One morning as my teenage son and I were leaving for school, he looked up at the monotone grey clouds and said, “Someone forgot to paint the sky this morning.” Wow, I thought. What a simple and awesome statement. Glancing up at the canvas of clouds I thought he’s right, we can paint the day however we wish, it’s just there presenting itself in all its simplicity.
How do we paint the days? I know that sometimes I make things so complicated my head spins. Too many projects all open at the same time, the revolving office door, to-do lists, and home-life responsibilities that consume me. It really doesn’t have to be that way. I am a multitasker who welcomes challenge. Still, I do have the choice to paint the day in simplicity. How would that look?
First I would stop multitasking. I can hear you now, but wait! Aren’t you a craving multitasker with the ability to work in a fast-paced, multi-faceted job? Ah, true that but simplifying is appealing. What if I were to take the day down a notch? What if I prioritize each project according to deadline, shut my door at times, well at least to a crack, and concentrate on just one thing at a time, well that would certainly simplify AND provide greater accuracy (to which yes I admit mistakes have occurred, sadly yes).
Family member needs might be approached in the same manner. Helping my oldest with his resume needn’t be upon demand. How about scheduling time instead of being on 24/7. (Ok, I know I’m a mom, but I do have limitations!) Or when the middle daughter wants to sit and spill her guts just because she can and I’m sitting here writing, looking like I’m just playing on the computer. “How about coffee tomorrow honey? We’ll get a favorite latte and sit at the coffee shop.” Oh yeeeeaaah!
A conversation with a colleague about this very thing triggered movement. I was talking about the many tasks and detailed projects, she agreed too many details, then went on to say, “My hope is to simplify.” That one sentence did it.
“Simplifying would be fabulous. Totally and completely fabulous.” I responded thinking and I know how to do that, now I just have act. With a few last words from her I was hooked into making a change. She said, “I look forward to your next blog on the subject.”
You got me sister! Totally. And here it is. Paint the canvas of your day with simplicity. Choose to focus on the task at hand and leave the frantic multitasking to the adrenaline seekers. Take it down a notch, prioritize and remember you are just one person and that it’s O.K. to move from one task at hand to the next. Addressing one challenge at a time, be it in the workplace or in the personal arena, gives you the opportunity to meet each challenge and do it well. (Thank you my friend!) We are more than this…
“Our life is frittered away by detail…simplify, simplify, simplify!” ~ Henry David Thoreau