Mental Checklist

I’ve been thinking about it (I told this to Matt and he exclaimed “you’ve been THINKING about this?”) and I have decided that I am better at being organized and Matt is better about remembering things when they are not organized.  Let me give you an example.  Matt puts his cell phone all over the place- the counter, the table next to his chair, his pocket, beside his bed, etc.  But he never ever forgets it, even if he has to look for it sometimes.  I keep my cell phone on my desk next to my computer, where I pick it up and put it in the car and then bring it back to the desk.  If it isn’t on my desk, I assume it is in the car and I leave the house.  And therefore, I sometimes forget my cell phone.  (You know, when it isn’t in the car but I thought it was and I leave.)

So, my conclusion is that I have put so many processes into place and rely very heavily on them.  And Matt has very few processes in place and therefore relies on his memory.  (My memory sucks for procedural things.)  And this causes a problem for me when there is a breakdown in the system.  For example, last month, we didn’t get the rent check from our rental house in Florida.  I didn’t notice because I deposit it when I get it in the mail and that is all that I think about it.  But Matt noticed that it was missing because he doesn’t use any outside processes to remember- just his BRAIN.  (I have since added a computer reminder in my task list (yes, I rely very heavily on my computerized task list) to remind me to check if the rent check has come.)

On my mental checklist, I check things off when my part in them is finished.  I get a reminder on my computer for Matt’s parents’ anniversary.  I remind Matt that his parents’ anniversary is coming up.  And then, my part complete, I never think of it again.  I don’t do any follow up to see if Matt and his brothers have purchased a gift and mailed it.  I totally rely on the outside process to complete the task and if there is a slip up, I am screwed.  (I can use this as an example because Matt and his brothers always remember to send a gift without me continuing to bother them, so I am not pointing fingers at anyone specific for being the breakdown in the system.)

I’ve said this before, but the main reason I am so outwardly organized is because I have to be.  If there is some kind of breakdown in my system, I am screwed.