Women, it is said are better at multi tasking.
Men, we are told are better at concentrating on one task at a time.
The great Choreographer Twyla Tharp concludes in her book ‘The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life’
That no one can do more than one thing at any given time, not well, not badly just that the very idea is an anathema. For my part I tend to agree. I don’t know when the term first became common or indeed how its become common place, perhaps along with the notion of ‘having it all’ its taken on a convenient life of its own. The question is to whom.
Our lives are full of reminders, we are encouraged daily a thousand different ways to keep track of what we have to do, what we still need to do and what we’ve yet done, the frequent outcome, we do too much of the thing that others regard as important and not enough of what is actually important.
Squeezing in 5 minutes of physio exercises a day whilst you are brushing your teeth and answering emails whilst also checking the weather report might seem like a win, only one of these things will truly have your attention. whilst your brain does a phenomenal job of ensuring your body ticks along without you reminding it to, you might have two eyes but they are only ever looking in one direction, so whilst you were busy worrying about which shoes would best navigate the weather, you weren’t getting to all of your teeth and your ankle raises looked more like interpretative hula circles, as for the emails, do you even remember who sent what? At some point your physio, your dentist, your boss or your feet are going to feel you weren’t giving them what they needed.
The great Myth leads us to believe if we try hard enough and repeatedly somehow we will be able to cheat our biological reality which is that whilst our brain keeps all essential life functions going when it comes to activity we can still only do one thing at a time, and perhaps if we were to accept this fact and reality we would in fact become more and not less productive.
The saying ‘a stitch in time saves nine’ has never been more true, what we do today, we either pay for or reap the benefits from tomorrow. More Physio sessions, more complex and expensive dental work, and more emails explaining the previous emails metaphorically covered in tooth paste, aside from the time you’ll need to find to replace the shoes you wore in the rain when you didn’t realise you were looking at the weather update for Lisbon instead of Luton.
Concentrating on one task at a time requires discipline, you may be fantastically gifted with a variety of talents & skills, in fact you probably don’t even realise it so aren’t they worth giving them the time they need to grow and thrive.
Your Physio will thank, your dentist, your boss and your feet but perhaps most importantly your mind will thank you and isn’t that worth learning how to take care of.