Does your brain ever feel too busy? Mine does. And I’m guilty of never giving it a rest.
In my quest to be productive, I always seem to be fitting something in, and I think I’m suffering for it. Even reading is now an activity I squeeze in while on the cross-trainer. Rarely do I enjoy a relaxing hour perusing a book in my favorite chair.
Got five minutes while I wait for water to boil or a web page to load? I can make a quick phone call. Ten minutes waiting for my son’s next track event? Time to check my email/Twitter/Facebook/Pocket!
Through the wonders of my smart phone, I can access all of my social media and the entire wealth of the web anyplace/anytime. But that doesn’t mean I should.
And when I do, I don’t necessarily feel more productive, just more busy, more frazzled, more overloaded.
Part of my “problem” stems from being self-employed. When I worked full-time for someone else, work was at work, and when I left I was done. I could relax at home without guilt because my workday was over.
Now? Not so much. Home is my workplace, and my day is interspersed with activities from both worlds. I savor that freedom and flexibility, but sometimes it’s hard to set boundaries.
I used to enjoy downtime, sitting and thinking or noticing the world around me. It’s good to not be entertained or “productive” every spare minute of the day. I know this.
One of the reasons I like running so much is because I can’t do anything else while I’m out there except notice the world around me, and breathe.
Multi-tasking is a fraud. Apparently, we actually lose up to 40% of our productivity when we force our minds to keep switching gears.
I don’t know about you, but I’d like to get some of that 40% back!
My goals for the rest of the year are to cut back on multi-tasking and allow for those moments of downtime in my day. I’ll try to focus on one thing at a time so my brain doesn’t have to keep switching gears—Scrivener’s full screen/composition mode is great for this—and maybe even block out some time to sit, relax, and ponder. Heck, I might even meditate.