Of Course! Wait...Really?

Lately, I've been moving several projects forward simultaneously. My days are packed with teeny incremental steps on several fronts.

I'm learning several surprising things. Some big. Most small. Like, for example, what I do and don't need to have handy.

Decades ago, I bought a Filofax planning system. (Influences: Thirtysomething and Alexandra Stoddard.) Ever since, it's held All The Important Things, as well as Most Things It Came With.

A couple of months ago, I decided I should use my Filofax more wisely, or not use it at all. To start, I asked myself some questions.

Do I really need to carry the addresses of all of my cousins (especially when we communicate mostly through social media)?

How about that fold-out four-colour map of the world, including time zones? Is that a "gotta have at my fingertips!" kind of insert?

What about the daily to-do lists from two months ago?

The answers: No. No. No. And answering those questions has made me face a few hard truths.

For example: No, I am not the kind of person who needs a map of the world at my fingertips. I probably never was, though it was kind of fun to picture myself sitting in meetings with the time zone in Nepal at the ready. If I had even remembered I had it. Which I wouldn't have. (Now, of course, we would all race to be the first to look it up on our phone.)

The questioning process has been useful. I've ditched a lot of paper, not replaced a lot of purported "necessary information," and generally simplified my Filofax--which I now consult multiple times a day, and which (mostly) helps me remember what I'm doing and what comes next.

I've extended the questions to other items I "must have." Like the extra glasses case with cleaning solution and wipes. Like the bag with five lipsticks, four of which I don't even like. Do I need both of those things in my purse? Of course! Wait...of course NOT.

At one time in my life, I might have wanted to be the kind of person who needed the time zone map and the five shades of lipstick. That time isn't now. Ignoring the voices of my Depression-surviving parents screaming "don't throw anything away!" I've now filed the addresses (for holiday cards) and parts of the to-do lists (taxes); I've left the eyeglass cleaning kit in the bathroom and tossed the lipsticks.

But I waffled on the time zone map. I'm trying not to save things for "someday," but still. I put it with the other maps in the stash of images I'm collecting "to do art collages with someday maybe."

Because at one time, I might have wanted to be that person. I might be still. Just not today.