I glanced at the recipe again… keep stirring for a few minutes. I could hear the washing machine whirring away in the background, recognising the final spin cycle and planning to hang it all out before dinner. Miss 9 was perched up at the bench writing in her notebook while Master 7 was lining his dinosaurs up for battle along the window ledge.
My phone bipped on the bench beside me, I checked the message and began to type a reply with one hand as I continued stirring with the other.
As I helped Miss 9 with the spelling of a word my distracted mind wrote the same word within my text. Mmmmmm now my message no longer made sense, delete, delete. Oh what was I saying?
“Mum, Mum have you seen my green dinosaur with the red eyes?”
“What! Hang on just a minute.”
Oh this sauce is such a pain. I cease stirring, needing both hands to complete my text message before I begin mentioning dinosaurs and red eyes.
I quickly hit send and in the same moment notice spell check had completely changed some of the words and in turn my meaning.
Damn why didn’t I check it properly?
“Mum what is a fancy word for yummy?”
“Let me think sweetness.”
Mum have you seen my dinosauuuuuurrrr!!!!”
“The one I just told you about?”
“Maybe delicious? Mum what do you think?”
Delicious oh yes, oh no the sauce!!!!!!
I am a chronic multi tasker.
I have often thought of multi tasking as a gift, a super power even, one many of us are born with. The high achiever within me agrees. How else would I get it all done? Exceed expectations and dazzle the crowd.
Not only can my fingers click, swipe, stir and write, my mouth can simultaneously move to hold down a conversation and all the while my mind is flitting from conversations, to topics and planning more tasks.
All at the same time.
Let me finish my story…… I did end up with lumpy sauce. I later sent several more text messages to clarify the meaning of the original spell checked disaster. Miss 9 gave up on the story and just as hubby arrived home from work I was berating Master 7 about the responsibilities of dinosaur ownership and how they are not Mummy’s to look after.
Moments later I found the infamous dinosaur perched on the laundry shelf. How did he get there? I recalled stopping to load the washing machine while talking on the phone and tidying up earlier that day. I had absent-mindedly left dear dinosaur behind.
I was multi tasking then too.
I wandered back into the kitchen ,with the dinosaur in my hand, to see my daughters writing book now sitting unattended on the bench, my lumpy sauce ready to be poured down the sink and my gorgeous son crawling under the couch still looking for his toy.
In that very moment I realised when I am multi tasking I am also dividing my attention.
I am short-changing those around me and I am also short-changing myself.
I want to stop multi tasking.
How about you, are you a multi tasked? Does it work well for you?