The List

My friend PamPam Nelson, a dear friend and high school classmate, recently posted to her Facebook status a thought-provoking list of “to do” items that will make anyone’s life more meaningful. I was intrigued as to the source of the list, so I Googled a few of the list items and found several websites with a nearly-identical list of 39 items, including the items from Pam’s Facebook list. I have edited the list in a few places for increased clarity or meaning, and have included relevant sources where appropriate. I want to share the list with you on the eve of this new year. Some of the list items will resonate with you more than others. That’s OK. Pick and choose the ones that mean the most to you, and resolve to incorporate them into your daily journey. I pray God’s richest blessings on you and yours for a Happy and Prosperous New Year!


Physical Health

  1. Drink plenty of water. [1]
  2. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper. [2]
  3. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants, and fewer foods that are manufactured or processed in plants. [3]
  4. Live with the 3 E’s: Energy, Enthusiasm, Empathy. [4]
  5. Make time to pray. [5] (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
  6. Play more games.
  7. Read more books.
  8. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day.
  9. Get plenty of sleep (at least 7 hours each night). [6]
  10. Go for a walk every day (10 – 30 minutes). [7]

Emotional Health

  1. Don’t compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
  2. Don’t have negative thoughts about things you cannot control. Instead, invest your positive energy in the present moment. Focus on things you can control.
  3. Don’t over-do. Recognize your limits, and live within them.
  4. Don’t take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
  5. Don’t waste your precious energy on gossip.
  6. Dream more while you are awake.
  7. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
  8. Forget the issues of the past. Don’t remind your partner of his/her prior mistakes. That will only interfere with your present happiness. (1 Corinthians 13:4-5)
  9. Don’t hate … anyone … period. Life is too short to waste time hating. (1 John 2:9, 1 John 3:15, 1 John 4:20)
  10. Make peace with your past so that it won’t spoil the present. (You can’t change the past, so make amends where possible, and then move on. Focus on the present and the future.)
  11. You are the only person in charge of your happiness. No one can make you unhappy unless you let them.
  12. Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. Problems are simply part of the curriculum; they come and they go, but the lessons they teach you will last a lifetime.
  13. Smile and laugh more. (Proverbs 17:22)
  14. You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

Social Health

  1. Call your family often.
  2. Each day give something good to others.
  3. Forgive everyone for everything. (Matthew 6:12-15)
  4. Spend time with people over the age of 70 and under the age of 6.
  5. Try to make at least three people smile each day.
  6. What other people think of you is none of your business.
  7. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch.


  1. Do the right thing!
  2. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful, or joyful.
  3. God heals everything.
  4. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
  5. No matter how you feel – get up, dress up, and show up.
  6. The best is yet to come.
  7. When you wake up in the morning and you are alive, give God thanks. (Psalm 118:24)
  8. Your innermost being is always happy. So, be happy.

NOTE: For a downloadable, printable PDF version of “The List”, click here.

Paul O'Rear Signature


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