Hello everybody. My name is Carol. I am a recovering multi-tasker.
Thankfully, the drive to juggle many obligations at once has diminished as I got older, and I’m grateful for that. Age does have it’s benefits. Before the word “multitasking” became popular, we thought of ourselves as efficient. And this was a good thing. I was proud of my efficiency and the compliments I got for being so “together”. Little did I know there was a price to pay.
Efficiency seemed like a virtue and served me well through mommyhood, volunteering, working, social arranging, and keeping the household running smoothly. But juggling all those hats at once imprisoned me in a “getting the job done” kind of existence, and the habit stuck hard after so many years. A habit amplified by thinking you have to do everything perfectly. Oh, yeah.
My epiphany came one day when someone asked what I really enjoyed in life. Unbelievably, the answer didn’t come right off the bat, and I had to think long and hard to pinpoint something specific. Getting over that accomplishment way of thinking has been a long road, but I know for certain it’s a better way to go through life. Living the good life is not all about how many things you can do at once. It makes perfect sense. Putting full attention to three things is far better than giving six a quick once over. Really, my goal is to put full attention on ONE thing at a time. But I’m a work in progress on that one. Just look at what I would have missed had my husband not insisted we take the day off from our extensive list to cruise the wonderfulness of autumn on Sunday.

This time of year is especially challenging. Along with an already full schedule, gifting, tempting sales, entertaining, family obligations, and decorating for the season all beckon. All this can be fun, but… doing it all is impossible. Oh, it’s possible, but please don’t make your body go through all the stress it brings. Tensions peak during holiday seasons and being an A-One multi-tasker helps to get it all don But there is no prize for doing 26 things at once, merely high blood pressure. And wouldn’t it be nice to actually enjoy it all for a change.

There are times in life when multi-tasking is necessary. Especially when we start having babies. Life can get crazy when parenthood collides with work collides with keeping a loving relationship vibrant. But change happens and the craziness is eventually replaced with a gentler way of seeing things. Old habits die hard, but they CAN be killed. Just need to be stomped a little harder.
Really, what’s so great about it anyway? There’s no Olympic medal for doing 10 things at once. It doesn’t make you better, just more tired.
***Warning label: Severe multi-tasking may be hazardous to your health.