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Multi-tasking is Not Good for the Soul…

08 Jun

For years my husband has been telling that he likes to finish one thing before he starts another.  In our business it is very hard for him to do that because he sells, buys and fixes vehicles.   He has many interruptions throughout the day and some days he feels that he hasn’t accomplished anything.   That usually means that he spent the day talking to customers about vehicles but has not completed the mechanical work he intended to get done that day.  My answer to him in the past years has been “Welcome to Motherhood”. 

When you are taking care of a baby or a family, in general,  it is a day and sometimes a night filled with many interruptions.  There are many days when you feel that you are farther behind than where you were when the  day started.  The house is messier, there is more laundry and dinner isn’t ready either.

I think that I am starting to come around to his way of thinking.  I’m finding it increasingly difficult to move from one thing to another without feeling agitated.  I like how I feel when I complete a project.  It seems that I have less completed projects at the end of my day than I used to have.  Maybe its my age or laziness.  My husband used to get frustrated with me because I would use commercials to go and do the dishes or laundry and never just sit through an entire tv show.  I used to pride myself on the number of different things that I could accomplish in a day.   Where is that pause button on life?

When I was learning to fly my CFI (certified flight instructor) was constantly reminding me to divide my attention from inside the plane and outside the plane.  You need to do that to remain safe.  Dividing attention keeps you aware of your surroundings and your instruments in the plane.  She said “I know that when you taking care of your grandson that you are doing more than just watching him.  You are probably doing laundry, cleaning, fixing a meal or maybe working on your computer.”  I reached a point in my life where I would like to just savor the moment. 

If I am gardening, I want to keep gardening.  I don’t want to stop and fix a meal.  If I am quilting I’d like to keep quilting until I am ready to stop and not be thinking about the laundry that needs to be done.  If I am reading a good book there are days I would like to read through the entire book if I felt like it without guilt.

Since I started my blog in January I have enjoyed thinking about different topics to write about.  I enjoy reading other blogs and hearing about different parts of the world.  I don’t want to divide my attention to different tasks anymore.  I  just want to devote my time and  attention to whatever is my interest is at the moment.  Could this be a glimpse into those possibly elusive retirement years waiting for me?

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4 Comments

Posted by on June 8, 2010 in Flight training, Reflections

 

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4 responses to “Multi-tasking is Not Good for the Soul…

  1. Linda Anderson

    June 9, 2010 at 6:46 am

    So true! I sure understand what you mean and oh, how many times do I share that frustration over not getting things done because something came and interrupted me. But I also want to be available and willing to be interrupted when God has other plans for me. That’s the rub! When I think I’m doing what I should be, what I really want to be doing, then something else crops up and demands my attention, I usually whine and complain that I am too busy with something else. I sure like that expression you use – “Where is the pause button on life?” Let me know if you find it!

     
  2. flyinggma

    June 9, 2010 at 7:17 am

    I agree about wanting to be available when things crop up. What I need to look at is not all things have equal importance. I remember a quote from years ago I read at a parts store and it went something like this “Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on our part” or something like that. I don’t want just anything to eat up my time. Am I sounding selfish?

     
  3. Thomas Stazyk

    June 9, 2010 at 2:47 pm

    Interesting thoughts. It may have something to do with having more control over your time and therefore being more possessive about how you use it. If you start the day knowing you have minimal control because of kids, customers or co-workers, it’s easier to deal with interruptions because you expect them. When those things aren’t such a big part of your day the unexpected becomes much more of an unwelcome intrusion. And no, not selfish.

     
    • flyinggma

      June 10, 2010 at 6:57 am

      It is definitely a time issue. I want more of it. I find myself up earlier or staying up later to grab some time for the things I enjoy. Our small business has a very demanding schedule. We are basically “On Call” 24/7 between our car sales and towing service. The 24/7 economy has made it difficult to compete. We don’t have the manpower to be open 24/7 nor do we want to be but it forces us to be very flexible in meeting our customers outside of regular business hours. Several evenings a week we meet customers after business hours and this week we have one we are meeting at 7am. Often we don’t get a lunch break because the customer that said they would be there before lunch is late and the customer that is coming just after lunch is early. There are days when we finally get home and then the phone rings and it is the sheriff requesting a towtruck. So off we go, these calls are not optional, usually an accident scene.

      When I was younger the frenzied pace didn’t seem so bad and at times the more things we could do in a day, the more exciting it was. Now I keep thinking “I don’t want to work this hard anymore”

      I start off everyday knowing I have minimal control. My husband and I have a certain number of things we have promised our customers we will do each day, warranty work or mechanical repairs. We have appointments for them but the unpredictable steady stream of customers that come in to shop cars or call to do the same is what makes managing our time difficult. Don’t get me wrong, I love our car customers but you can’t work at that frenzied pace trying to take care of everyone in a personal way without it taking a toll. I feel like I have aged 10 years in the last two.

       

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