Posts Tagged ‘multi tasking parents’

Hitting the ground running

Robyn Cameron, entrepreneur, firedancer, self employed domestic worker, chef at home. Passionate about education, philosophy, music, nature, animals, crafts & South Africa. General manager and shareholder at Hire Education. You’ll also find her on twitter.

If you are in the same boat as me, 2010 has kicked off to such a rapid start I think I might have missed it altogether! Generally I come to the end of January and feel like I should have done more, but this year I’m feeling that if January was this crazy, look out for the next 11 months ahead!

I once read a quote which seems appropriate:

“Don’t worry about tomorrow. After all today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.”

Easier said than done? Right?

Maybe not. What I’ve learnt is that multi-tasking isn’t always best as we tend to divulge our focus. This leads us to complete a few things at once, but in double the amount of time and of a lesser quality, had we been concentrating on one thing at a time. Ever tried helping the kids with homework whilst trying to cook dinner? The outcome – homework that looks like a dogs breakfast or possibly dinner that doesn’t look much better!

So, for this year, my aim is to take things one at a time and worry less about what I’m not doing so that I can focus on what I am doing.

My first attempt at living in the present will be to compartmentalise (yes that is actually a word) my time. Oh wait, I think that me googling compartmentalise whilst writing this post still counts as multitasking? Anyway, most of you will have so many tasks to accomplish in one day that just trying to figure out what to do next will leave your head spinning. Whilst you are at work you might be thinking – I have to fetch the kids from school, then go to the shops – what do I need from the shops? Which leads to – what will I do for dinner? And then, before you know it, you have not progressed at all on the task at hand.

So, when you decide to do something, keep bringing yourself in check when your mind wanders. Even if it means turning off the phone, closing your email and anything else open on your computer. Allocate time to tasks – even set a timer on your phone! When that timer goes off stop whatever you are doing and move onto the next thing.

At first it may feel like you are leaving things open ended, but as time goes by you will get into a routine that works for you and start seeing the benefits of dedicating your focus on one thing instead of many. Once you train your mind to concentrate on the task at hand, you will soon start to have less panic running around in your brain about all the other things you need to do, which will lead to less stress about things you can’t change at that point in time.

What are your ways of coping in with this demanding, high paced society, where it’s now or never that seems to be ruling our waking hours?