My brain has too many tabs open

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Photo courtesy of Smiling Mind - https://www.facebook.com/smilingmind.com.au

Did you see this graphic this week?

I know it reasonates with many of you.

I shared it out via my facebook page, from the very clever team at @smilingmind - .

I then followed it up by sharing out this post on multi-tasking. I can confirm that I am most definitely in the multi-tasking is a myth camp. If you haven’t read the article yet - I recommend you read - Multitasking Can Damage Your Brain and Career, Studies Say  (from the Entrepreneur website) http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/244376 .

So back to the tabs.

You know when your computer gets slower and slower and ceases to do what it is meant to do? I find that this happens regularly to me when working - If you have seen my desk, you will know why!

I have 6 screens at my disposal - 3 I regularly use, 2 I refer too and one for show.

So you can imagine that from time to time, I have a million tabs open, all draining from the one power source, all making my PC run slower and slower until it ceases to do what I need it to, when I need it to do it! 

What happens next tends to involve a bit of swearing if a deadline is looming, perhaps a little banging of the keyboard, closing down multiple tabs and if things are really bad - a complete reboot and I start from scratch..

Sound familiar?

I am pretty sure that my brain was operating (and still can operate) like that.

Too many tabs open. Too much happening, jumping from place to place and slowely and surely getting worse at all of them.

Why do we do it to ourselves? Why do we think we can do everything, all at once, for everyone to the high and sometimes exactly standards we set for ourselves?

The truth, as I have come to understand it, is that whilst it might seem like we are successfully multi-tasking, we are actually not doing that at all. I think women in particular are kidding ourselves with this myth of simultaneously thinking and doing multiple items at once, well.

All we are actually doing is pivoting from one task to another and our capacity to pivot at the same speed, to divide the same attention to each task I think gets less and less the more external pressure we either place on ourselves or others place on us. 

So what am I doing to stop the rot?

Last week we made a recruitment decision within our business that will assist me to

  • be happier in myself
  • have more time to devote to more strategic thinking
  • have time to plan and follow through with the work I find most enjoyable within our company.

In effect I have created the environment that will allow me to turn off multiple tabs in my brain.

I am at the CTRL - ALT - DELETE phase, power down and start again. 

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A great source of sadness, frustration and guilt for me is when I don’t deliver high quality work for clients. This is also compounded when you get negative feedback from clients when you know you actually have delivered, however their concept of that outcome is not a match with reality. It can be a vicious cycle - one in which the good humour that you need to carry with you when working in a service based environment is sorely tested via depression.

Yep I am a control freak.

I work at a fast pace, expect a lot of myself and those around me and when I know I have too much on, I tend to push past it - get a bit manic, work ridiculous hours and those closest to me suffer the most. 

So just like how I have started to build good habits of mindfulness, I have finally started to let go of activities and clients so that other people can step up and fill that space. 

It is time for me to move into other areas where my desire to share knowledge, experience and have fun in this great industry I am in can be realised. 

I am very excited about this step, it has been a long long time coming….

I am well overdue to close down some of those tabs.