Stop messing with other stuff, and read this blog!

Seriously… Focus.

It is a challenge because we have become a distracted people—always juggling, seeking to be mentally present in multiple places. You can’t do it. It creates problems.
Habit #4 focuses on single-tasking. Remember: a habit is an automatic implementation of a behavior (or set of behaviors) in response to a stimulus. It is what you do when given a cue. You don’t have to think about it; it just happens. Previous habit blogs focus on the concept of habits, Habit #1: Expressing LoveHabit #2: Questions before Answers, and Habit #3: Sleep to Live.

Let’s talk about single-tasking.

Imagine traveling back in time to 1970. Upon arrival, you try to convince someone that we will have a major safety issue in the future—because people will be trying to write letters while driving their cars. They would think you were crazy! But ask any emergency medical technician, and you will receive a passionate and frustrated confirmation that it is a major problem. The primary task is to drive from point A to point B safely. The distractions are rarely important. But they are dangerous!

Multi-tasking can be physically dangerous. It can also be relationally hazardous. You have experienced the anger associated with talking to a presently absent person. They are absent because they are multitasking–focusing on something other than the person standing right in front of them.

We appreciate people who listen well, who focus on the conversation, who single task, who are truly present. Perhaps that is the point of single-tasking—to be present.
Let the distractions be a reminder to focus on the task at hand, the priority of the moment, the conversation you are in. Your single-tasking presence is a gift. Keep it intact.

Cue: Tech dings and shiny things. 

Old Habit: Multi-task and add another ball to juggle.

New Habit: Ignore the distractions and focus on the task at hand.

Reward: Increased productivity and better relationships.