oh how I would love to drink my coffee and do nothing else! this is a shot from my session with Stella
I have this terrible habit of trying to do 10 things at once, and not succeeding at any of them. It's multi-tasking at its worst. Let me give you a concrete example from this week…
I struggle through the door and up the stairs with a baby on my hip and shopping bags on my arms. I dump everything outside the kitchen and think, "I really need to put a load of nappies on to wash." I get the washing machine started and then walk back to the kitchen to start putting away the shopping. I notice the mess on the counters and start trying to wash dishes as I put fresh food in the fridge. I'm hungry so I'm also shovelling bites of food into my mouth as I go. Then I notice that the floor is disgusting and I start sweeping up the remnants of lunch. It's at this point that I realise that I've forgotten about the washing machine, which is now halfway through its cycle with no nappies in it. Awesome. The kitchen is still a mess, the laundry pile is as high as ever and Clementine is whining for my attention. Utter fail.
I was recently re-reading Sara Avant Stover's book (as I tend to do at the beginning of each season) when this passage jumped out at me:
"Knowing the reality of these women's lives as wives and mothers, Dipa Ma offered the most practical advice she could: Practice mindfulness. Feel the cloth as you fold your laundry and hang it on the line. Notice the temperature of the water on your skin as you wash the dishes. Sense your baby's lips on your breast as she feeds. Turn away from your thoughts and become present to moment-to-moment sensations as you do your chores."
- Sara Avant Stover
It was just the advice I needed to hear. Instead of trying to do five things at once, do one, but do it mindfully. 'One thing at a time' has been the mantra I repeat to myself many times a day. I still find myself trying to multi-task but when I do, I pause, take a breath and commit myself to just one task. And when I do, I no longer feel like I'm running around like a headless chicken and I get more done.