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I love to read the little blurbs about psychology studies in the newspapers. It’s the type of stuff I find interesting, and it’s much less depressing than finding out which country is engaging in threatening military maneuvers at the moment. There was one blurb a while back on multitasking. It summed up as this: when you multitask you aren’t doing different things at the same time; you’re doing one thing at a time and just switching back and forth between things quickly.
I’ve spent the past couple of days working on 3 projects (1 knit, 1 crochet, 1 Tunisian) that are all due on the same day. I didn’t want to leave any one project till the end, so I’ve been switching back and forth between all of them in about 1 hr intervals. This is a perfectly logical way to act. I’ve made steady progress on each project. But the bottom line is it’s been a psychological and emotional failure. I’ve been working and working and working and yet I still can’t point to 1 thing that is absolutely completely done. Technically this shouldn’t make a difference. Progress is progress, and enough progress equals completion. But I’m still feeling discouraged.
In the book Switch, the authors discuss how, in order to encourage a behavior, you need to provide a win early on. Some sort of victory at the start to keep the ball rolling. That’s why organizing books tell you to start with your purse or a small closet: it’s a small project you can accomplish quickly. I need a victory. So I think that today I’m going to focus on just one project and plow through it till it is absolutely, completely, unequivocally finished. In fact, I think that’s my advice for the week: If you are getting discouraged (about work, life, or anything) pick one project or activity that needs getting done and do it.