Do you like to multi-task? For many people, including myself, the ability to multi-task is like a badge of honour, as if I’m saying, “Look how many things I can juggle at once! Aren’t I impressive and capable?” But increasingly, I’m finding that I don’t do any of these tasks particularly well. I can flit between several different things and think I’m doing something pretty special, when really, I’m not doing anything very effectively. It all becomes a bit tiresome.
Then I came across the phrase ‘single-tasking’, when only one thing is done at any time. By focusing on just the one job, it can be done efficiently; and increasingly, I’m finding that I enjoy it more too. I can relax out of the whirlwind of being ever-so-busy and lean into the singular task in hand. It’s a great feeling to corral my thoughts and actions into one task, staying focused and in the flow. It takes a bit of practice, but like all skills worth having, I need to put the time in. So, from now on, it’s one thing at a time.
I’ve been thinking a lot about this recently, about how life is all about choices. When you remove all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you respond to situations. You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood. You choose how people affect your mood.
This is where I stumble a little: it’s difficult when I allow other people’s strong (often negative) moods to affect my own – but I still have a choice. I can descend with them into a pit of despair, or I can decide to go my own way. It’s up to me and only I have the power to make that choice – no one else.
And the trick is finding what helps you make the right choice at the time, what helps you keep momentum and drive to be able to choose what’s best for you. It’ll be no surprise to regular readers that ensuring I have enough sleep is my ‘magical’ power, as my brain seems to suffer on too little sleep. So, if you find yourself being affected by others’ moods, consider what helps you function well and do more of that.
The bottom line: it's your choice how you live life.
In my day job, I come across a lot of people who strive for perfection. It’s something that I’ve noticed more and more in the teaching profession over the years, no doubt associated with the amount of testing, assessing, checking and re-checking (just in case things have changed in the three minutes since the previous assessment was made). I found this ‘perfect’ quote from Brené Brown, who is a research professor at the University of Houston, Texas.
“Perfectionism is armour. It’s not internally driven like healthy striving. It’s externally driven and fuelled by ‘What will people think?’ Perfectionism is a shield that keeps us from being seen. Here’s to a genuine, unamoured, messy, awkward, compassionate, less-than-perfect life.”
I love this attitude and strive for it daily, saying to myself that it really doesn’t matter what people think and it is perfectly acceptable to be seen. How about you? For more on the marvellous Brené, take a look at www.brenebrown.com.
(My idea of 'perfection' looks a little something like this - taken at Lake Windermere last week. Beautiful!)
Having spent the past weekend in Paris watching the final leg of the Tour De France (shameless travel-brag!), I was thinking about human endeavour and how astonishing our bodies and minds can be. After 3,351kms in 21 stages, it was remarkable to see people still able to cycle at over 60km/hour along cobbled streets and not look at all tired. I was exhausted just watching but I maintain that standing in the heat for hours is much more punishing than cycling…
Anyway, it was awe-inspiring to realise quite how much effort goes into such an achievement, physically and mentally. So this week, I’m celebrating human endeavour – the patience, the resilience, the tenacity and the triumph. What a remarkable feat!
(BTW, I’m taking a break next week so will be back on 15th August.)
Hi, I'm Joanna from Clean Well-Being.
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Clean Well-being ramblings