notquiteold

Nancy Roman

The Good-Day Do-Good Checklist

One night many years ago I was lying in bed, waiting for sleep and reviewing my day. I hadn’t had a bad day, but I could not decide whether it had been a good day.

I realized then that my problem was that I did not have any standard for measuring the success of my day.

I needed a Good Day checklist.

Over the next several weeks I developed my test for the valuation of my days.

I decided on six criteria. It’s simple. I just need to do one good thing in each category. Just one. Not so ambitious. I found that even if I did something I really loved all day long – one single category did not give me that sense of satisfaction that comes from just doing something small in all six.

And I have been using this checklist for at least 20 years now. It works for me.

Each day is a Good Day if I:

1. Do something good for my home. Make the bed. Do the dishes. At least turn on the dishwasher.

2. Do something good for my body. Take a walk. Practice Yoga. Skip the donut and eat the apple.

3. Do something good for my mind. Read a book. Learn something new. Maybe even listen carefully to an opinion I don’t share.

4. Do something good for my work. Up to this point, my do-good list has been job related. To make sure I accomplish something worthwhile every day. You’d think I’d easily be able to accomplish SOMETHING at work – that’s what they pay me for after all. But I am sometimes surprised – and appalled – at how difficult this can be. But if I finish just one thing – that’s a good day. And now that I am retiring – my focus will be on my new in-process novel. I can’t wait to start checking this one off my list on a daily basis.

5. Do something good for someone else. Bring dinner to my mother. Compliment someone sincerely. Teach someone something. Perhaps just: ‘Don’t holler at you-know-who’ is enough some days.

And finally:

6. Do something good for sheer pleasure. Watch that TV show that I’m embarrassed to admit I love. Reminisce over old photographs. Dance in my underwear.

I’ll admit that there are days when I am on the floor at 11PM getting in a few crunches. Or saying, “You looked nice in that shirt today, Honey,” as I’m saying goodnight.

But most days – it’s easy. Really easy.

And I have a clean house, decent health, interesting conversations, a successful career, good friends – and a smile on my face.

dancin'.jpg

44 Comments

  1. It sounds like a great check-list. I hope you continue to have many more “good days”.

    Like

    • Thanks! Some days are better than others – but most days are “good days.”

      Like

  2. It’s a great idea and great list, mind if I borrow it? πŸ™‚ I think I accomplish most of these things daily but I like the idea of mentally checking each night. Thanks!

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    • The list really works – mostly because it just creates an ‘awareness’ that you should accomplish something and keep a balance.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I love this idea! And I love the list you came up with.

    Like

  4. Reblogged this on Strong Women and commented:
    This checklist is both simple and brilliant at the same time! I couldn’t improve it so I am reblogging it. Is that a word?

    Like

  5. LauraBelle

    That’s a great list. I had never thought about it before, but the days when I do all those things are good days.

    Like

    • Aren’t they though? There’s a certain satisfaction in the balance.

      Like

  6. Dana

    I don’t have energy to think of all those thi… zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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    • Well, maybe you can start with a 5 item checklist.

      Like

  7. I’m a little envious of your life balance, something I’d like to figure out myself someday. I could try to do a similar checklist, I just don’t know how disciplined I’d be in sticking with it.

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    • It’s easy, if some days you let yourself count TINY things. Did you eat a piece of fruit? Did you hold the door for someone?

      Like

  8. Lovely checklist! I’ve never thought of making one before but I’m going to this evening πŸ™‚

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    • Thanks… it’s pretty easy. Last night I used my husband’s “Ab-Roller” just before bed. Five minutes. Good enough.

      Like

  9. I love this. So simple! Thank you for sharing.

    Like

  10. Good list.
    We often think about the day in terms of good or bad. Good in that there was little pain for either/both of us, good if we did the shopping/laundry etc, good if we went out for a drive and subsequent walk. I’m glad to say that the occasional Bad Day is when we succumbed to the call of the doughnuts or other naughty things we shouldn’t eat. πŸ™‚

    Like

    • I never say never. If I want a doughnut bad enough – I eat one. Just not every day!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. That’s a great checklist! MJ

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  12. I’m copying and pasting your list to my computer! I feel every day you wake up is a good day, although sometimes the waking itself is pretty brutal. But a list helps keep you on task. Let’s task away!

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    • Good for you! And some days, just do the minimum… you don’t have to clean the whole house – just dust the computer!

      Like

  13. Holy Shit that is SOME story!!!! Wow!! What you went through is crazy and scary. I am so glad that in the end you have this beautiful child!!! πŸ’œπŸ’œ

    Like

    • hmmm…. wrong comment?

      Liked by 1 person

      • You are right! I am so sorry. I was wondering what everyone was referring to in terms of a list. It’s a fantastic list by the way. Just getting up and brushing my teeth is sometimes a victory in itself! Sorry about the wrong comment. πŸ™‚

        Like

        • I promise to write a post soon that your comment will be perfect for!

          Liked by 1 person

          • Ha,ha,ha! You’re awesome! πŸ™‚

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          • Ray G

            A little late to have a wee one, yes? Unless it’s a new kitten, of course.

            Like

  14. Sounds like a check list worth incorporating in my day to day life. Thanks!

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  15. I love your “do good” list and plan to copy it and paste it nearby for easy reference. I have done 2 of the 6 things so far (made the bed and crocheted a scarf for a friend), and half the day is gone. Hoping to complete the rest! πŸ™‚

    Like

  16. Awesome! I’m stealing your list!

    Like

  17. Wow, this is a great list! Can I steal it too?

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  18. Wonderful. All those things add up to a life well-lived. And the good news is just doing a little each day goes a long way.

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    • Thanks. It’s surprising how little things add up.

      Like

  19. First of all I would like to say awesome blog! I had a quick
    question that I’d like to ask if you do not mind. I was interested to find
    out how you center yourself and clear your thoughts prior to writing.
    I have had a difficult time clearing my thoughts
    in getting my ideas out. I truly do take pleasure in writing but it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes tend to be lost just trying to figure out how to begin. Any recommendations or hints?
    Appreciate it!

    Like

    • When I go to bed at night, I try to compose two sentences (or a paragraph if I am lucky) in my mind. I memorize those sentences. Then when I sit at the computer the next day, I have a little start – it gives me a jump.

      Like

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