Misused Multi-tasking

Multi-tasking is so 2011.

Let 2012 be the year of focus! (i proclaim as I jump off my ball to refill my teacup before typing the next sentence…focus fail)

I love, love, love technology but lately I feel like it’s destroying my ability to focus on one task at a time.  While I type a post, check a patient in, even read blogs I have like a hundred little tabs eyeing me, tempting me to abandon whatever it is I’m working on.   I try to tell myself that this is time management; while one page is loading I have time to read an e-mail, check my blog stats, and maybe even fit in a push up or two.   It’s not just web-induced distractions either, I am a “pro”at cooking lunch, brewing tea for later, unloading grocery bags, catching up on my favorite t.v. shows, and planning my dance classes all within a 15 minute time frame.  Does it save time?  Maybe sometimes but it’s also contributing to my diminishing ability to focus on one thing at a time and follow through with it.

Yesterday I put myself to the test.  My to-do list was long but I made myself start with the least pleasant tasks at hand and see them all the way through directly to the end: no throwing in laundry mid-thought, no extra tabs on the screen, just one single objective.  Temptations were everywhere but I did well and in the end I don’t think it took me any longer than it would have otherwise, it just didn’t include any internet shopping along the way ;).

Yoga is an excellent tool for practicing focus but even my yoga practices have started out distracted lately.  I lay out my mat and for the first ~10 minutes of practice I find myself filled with thoughts of being anywhere/ doing anything else.  It’s not that the yoga doesn’t feel amazing for my body but my mind is so accustomed to the stimulation of multi-tasking that it struggles to drop in to the focus of yoga and just be there.  After the initial confusion my mind remembers what it’s like to single-task and by the end of the practice (which is sometimes just 15 minutes) I feel clearer and calmer than I do any other time in the day.   Then I return to old habits.

My multi-tasking habits had me in such a tailspin yesterday that I did the one thing that I knew would force me to stop and do nothing. I booked an acupuncture treatment.  I don’t mind needles but that doesn’t mean acupuncture feels good exactly but it always feels like just what I need at the time.  And laying on a table alone with needles stuck into so many places that I can’t even move is a hell of a lesson in being present and focused on one task at hand.

I can’t wait for my appointment tomorrow!

Do you find yourself doing a thousand things at every moment?  Or have you found that you function better if you focus on one thing at a time?  What tips do you have to stay focused even while trying to complete many things at once?

Super Sunday

Yesterday was an almost perfect Sunday.

I woke up to a beautiful man making me a delicious breakfast, followed by a delicious yoga session in my living room.  The afternoon was spent with two dozen other dancers in a free workshop offered by the crew from The Unearthing, an amazing performance art extravaganza that is happening in Charlottesville.

Tate and I collaborated on a nourishing dinner of baked salmon, roasted pesto potatoes, and salad with Sweet But Not Refined Chocolate Tortes for dessert and shared the meal with two other couples.

The only thing my day was missing was a little more time outside but I did get some fresh air walking the mile to and from the dance studio.

I also spent the weekend sore.  My entire body got WORKED in a kettlebell class on Friday.  The class was awesome; fast-paced without an overload of swings, and it was a helluva reminder that I haven’t been pushing myself in my 2-3 times a week strength workouts.  Today, day three, I am just about back to normal!

Soreness is uncomfortable but I try to see it as information about my bodies strengths and weaknesses.   Soreness is also an opportunity for growth, literally.  The tenderness that we experience with Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness is a result of our muscles repairing themselves and growing bigger.  I am not interested in big muscles but I am interested my bones staying sturdy, keeping my metabolism humming, and my muscles remaining pliable and strong.  In order to achieve this I must challenge my body and occasionally make myself so sore that I feel it for three days.

I am really enjoying reading all of the recommendations for natural beauty and household products!  For those readers not in the United States I am super curious about whether you feel like this is relevant to you.   Are the standards for these products stricter in your country?