AND so, the journey to single-tasking continues. It is a struggle, I tell you. As I said last Sunday, I am not a good multi-tasker. I try, but I really suck at it. I thought single tasking would be a breeze but no, as I realised it is even more difficult to do. Hehe. Sure, doing one thing at the time can be more beneficial. Being able to focus on one task at a time makes it easier to finish, or so I thought. In reality it is easier said than done. I have been used to doing so many things all at the same time (even if I don’t manage to finish everything), I am having a hard time adjusting to single tasks! Arghhh.
What gets to me is the fact that I keep getting distracted by the fact that I only have one thing to do. Yep. I keep thinking how I could do more(?) if I had more than one task to do! It is a vicious process really, because if I try to bite off more than I can chew, I would have left so many tasks unfinished. Which by the way, is usually happens with me. Haha. I thought about it and decided that I need to force myself to concentrate on fewer tasks so I deliberately leave stuff to do at home. Less distraction, less things to think about, more streamlined single-tasking! I would wake up and prioritize three things that I need to finish for the day. Believe me, it is a far cry from six to seven things on my old daily to-do list! Since I started last Monday, I have managed to do more than I set out to do mainly because I am able to concentrate better on my predetermined goals for the day. I really think this will work better for me in the long run.
I am less stressed this week and I guess it is because I have less to track. I found myself less overcome with panic that I still have so much to do because I did not attempt to stuff my day with too many tasks that are unrealistically achievable. It does take a lot of effort to not overdo things but when one tries to make changes one small step at a time, the results can be quite satisfying! My achievements are quite humble, but I see the difference quite clearly. Scaling down my tasks is still a gargantuan activity but I intend to get better every week. What did I manage to do?
Keep it simple! I use the least number of tools needed to get my chosen task done. Simply put, I stick to basics. For example, in writing this article, I only opened the only tool I really needed to write it, which is, the Google Docs on my Google Drive. I turned off all the usual programs that I keep running whenever I am online. I set out to finish writing this article first before doing word count as well as rereading the whole thing so I could edit out mistakes and correct typo errors. In the big picture of daily activities this translates to PRIORITIZING what really needs to get done first the simplest (or most effective) way that you have already proven possible. I know, it feels really cool when we are doing so many things at the same time right? I like the feeling of being busy, no swamped, with so many things to do! It makes me feel important in some weird way, quite honestly. However, that sinking feeling I get when I don’t get everything done can be a major bummer.
Take baby steps. The best thing I did this week was to spend time away from my mobile phone. Did I get anxious? Of course I did! A lot of my activities are tied to my phone! Hmmm. Which is probably why I usually end up trying to do all of them at the same time! It is quite amazing to realize how much more I was able to do when I actually learned to wean myself away from my mobile phone, even for just an hour! I will try to work on this more next week and see how increasingly productive I can get!
Give yourself time to really relax! Chill!!! I try to achieve this by not mixing business with pleasure. Meaning, I work when I need to work and I just relax when it is time to relax. I am currently relearning to REALLY just watch TV when I am watching television. I am trying my darnest not to surf the net, or chat with friends online or read up on work whenever I am watching my favorite shows on TV. Not only am I able to enjoy it better, it also improves my patience and seems to improve my attention span! Being less distracted has also allowed me to think things through. Now I am less likely to get lost in thought which often leads me to overthinking which as you may know, is never a good thing to do! I would like to think that after just one week, I am more able to sit still and do tasks one at a time better than last week; I guess you could say that I am ADHDing less these days and it feels really good, i think it really is worth a try!
Happy Sunday! :)
Published in the SunStar Davao newspaper on September 24, 2017.
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