Recently I was told that I had adult onset attention deficit disorder. Now, I must admit, I’ve been told similar things. Like, I’m a “scanner”. I don’t know if that’s a made up word, but I know what it means because I distinctly remember the conversation I was having with a friend who told me she suffered the same symptoms. It simply means always getting excited about new opportunities. It means switching mental gears, it means putting more than one thing on your plate and it oftentimes means starting over and spinning your wheels and getting nowhere. It means I rapidly transition from one thrill to the next, always in high gear.
It’s true, I have done many things in my life. And, the way my mom would put it is that I get excited about something – a new career, product(s), whatever…… then I feel the need to tackle it. To learn it, get there and then she says I’m off to the next. So, that’s 3 people (including my mom) who have recently told me that I have these symptoms.
I’ve always had multiple things that I was doing and I always looked at myself as so so blessed. Why not? I have exciting things going on!! Bored? What’s that? I never see the bottom of my desk or my dining room table for that matter. Then there’s the corner of the kitchen. OK, you get the picture.
So, lately, I’ve been doing a lot of contemplation….. wondering what would it be like now if I had just stuck to being a realtor or just stuck to running that cleaning business or just stuck to that healthy direct sales company. I guess I’ll never know, but what I have come to realize of late is that multitasking is not working well for me. I seem to get lost and then the day’s over. And THEN, when my husband comes home and asks if I had accomplished a bunch today, I have to sit back and say, no… no I did not. And, that does not feel good. I’ve been half-tasking thinking I was being twice as productive. And all this creates stress. So, all these years, I’ve been creating stress. And, we all know what stress will do! Kill ya!
This morning I picked up a little magazine with a 2 page article in it about the hazards of multitasking with subtitles of “The Fallacy of Multitasking” and “A Culture of Unproductive Busyness”. Hummmmmm….. and all this time, I prided my self in doing such.
I read that our conscious brains cannot multitask; they can only switch back and forth… and both tasks suffer. Sounds like a waste of time to me.
And, the frequency of interruptions experienced by the average person throughout the day is 11 minutes. I believe this.
There are ways to reduce interruptions and sensory overload. First off, which is important to me is creating a space just for work. That meant going back to the office and working solely from that room. That meant turning off my cell phone while I write and during “work” hours, not doing anything else but work.
Now, if I want to multitask, I will pick one activity that isn’t “work” related. For instance, I might be listening to a podcast or replay of a call while cleaning the kitchen or doing laundry. I think that’s okay. What else I am as of today implementing is taking time away from work. Walking away from the desk and having a cup of tea and not in front of my computer. Regrouping if you will.
And, what yet another friend of mine told me this morning was she ONLY puts 3 things on her to do list daily. She does those 3 and does them well. If there’s time for one or 2 more tasks, she’ll do them but at the end of the day, she feels good because she’s accomplished what was on her list. What a great way to finish off a winner for the day! Now, with that said, I will NEVER have just “3” things on my to-do list. But, maybe if I can accomplish say 5 or 6 (good numbers for ME), I will also feel good when my husband comes in and asks if I accomplished a bunch. Less stress too! That will help me to breath more deeply!
I guess it’s never too late to switch things up and maybe even make up some time. If you’ve poked around my blog a bit, you’ll probably figure out that I’m about helping people help themselves. A self-care crusader. Don’t we all want to take care of ourselves? Don’t we all want to help our kids, grandkids? We NEVER stop wanting to be healthier, not just physically but financially as well. If you think it’s too late to set up a retirement, or if you think it’s too expensive to help your grandchildren through college, think again. It’s not! Heck, I just saved my friend over $1,000 a year on her home and auto insurance. That alone will start a sweet college fund.
If you’d like to know more about how I help people in the so many ways that I do, please drop me a line or better yet, pick up the phone! I’d love to chat with you and see what we can do to make up some time.
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See ya. I need to go draw a line through number 4 on my list 🙂
This by The Self-Care Crusader
(c) 2013 D.C. Brown