I’m a master multi-tasker. I can do five things at once. Maybe I should have been in the circus.
I can bake bread, while making tea, while talking to my best friend in Idaho, while sweeping up the detritus that gathers along the edges between the counter and the wall, while watching for the chickens to start digging in the mulch so that I can throw rocks at them to chase them away.
And while I’m doing this, I’m listening for the buzzer on the dryer so that I can run up and set it for ten more minutes because it’s never done entirely. On my way back to the kitchen, I will shoo the dog off the couch and snatch the brown leaves off the houseplant next to the couch.
My mind works like this – always looking for a task that can be accomplished enroute to or during another task. Get more done. Get more done. Get more done. Don’t waste time. These are the thoughts that torment my days.
This makes me uber efficient.
But it also makes me mindless.
One of the daily challenges that came in my e-mail from Kindspring this week, said – practice single-tasking today.
My initial reaction was – why? Aren’t we supposed to multi-task? I’m a mom, that’s what we do.
But the more I thought about it that day, the more I liked the idea.
I tried that day to do one thing at a time.
I did not pick up the phone to call Lou in Idaho when I pulled out the basket of clothes to fold. Instead, I folded clothes. I thought about my children as I did this, so maybe I wasn’t entirely single-tasking, but I’ve never been good at shutting off my mind.
When I let the dog in, I stopped to scratch her behind her ears and look into her liquid eyes. She seemed startled by my single-minded attention, and followed me around the rest of the day looking for it.
For breakfast this morning, I made waffles for the kids. They were happy (even though snow hadn't canceled school like everyone predicted). For once, I left all the mornings tasks lie, and poured over a new recipe. The waffles were divine. I did the dishes later, after the kids had left for school.
This week’s challenge is blatantly stolen from Kindspring – Try single-tasking. Focus on the task at hand and be present in the moment. Make laundry, cleaning, driving, listening - sacred.
I’d love to hear how it plays out for you. Send me a message through the website or leave a comment here to inspire all of us.
What is living intentionally?
Remember when you were a kid and you broke something or took something that wasn’t yours or said something you shouldn’t have said? When your mother pinned you down on it, your knee-jerk reply was, “I didn’t mean to do it!”
If you want to learn more about living intentionally, you can buy my book by the same title. It's full of challanges, in fact, I counted them and there are 270 challenges in all! Click here to get your own copy!