I’m at the age where I walk into rooms, or get up from my desk, and in seconds can’t remember why I’m doing it. I sometimes don’t remember if I went to the bathroom or not, or if I ate or not. Medication might or might not be taken, and that’s never a good thing.

Come on feel the Illinoise
Paul Mayne via Compfight

I’ve been thinking about this type of thing more and more lately as I wonder if I’m missing out on something. Whereas multitasking used to come quite easily to me, these days it’s hard to get anything done correctly if I’m not really paying attention. Well, that’s not fully true. I can still listen to music or audio and get things done, but I’m not always sure I’m taking everything in when something gets a bit more complicated or when what I’m listening to hits a critical point and I have to listen more than work.

There’s this concept that’s been around for some years now that talks about “living in the moment”. In essence, the goal is to find more things that we kind of take for granted and instead focus on one thing at a time, even something we do without thinking, to feel it and to memorize it and to get it right. There was even a recent article on Huffington Post that talked about 15 Unexpected Side-Benefits To Living In The Present Moment.

This topic comes to me as I get to spend a little over a week at home for the first time since the Christmas/New Years holiday and I’ve found myself trying to remember lots of things that I need to do while I’m home, lots of things I want to do, and trying to manage things that pop up here and there that throw other thoughts out of my mind. Even Sunday night, as I was putting a list together of appointments and such (which is up to 19 so far and included writing this post with this title) I had to stop and go to the bathroom, and after washing my hands realized once again that I’d forgotten to put towels back on the rack since I’d put the others in the washer… 6 hours ago.

This time I stopped, because it was on my mind, went to the dresser and pulled out both a washcloth and a big drying towel and put them on the rack. I thought about what I wanted to put up because my last set was burgundy and I wanted to change to a different color, and went with dark blue. I hung both towels in the proper manner for me (my wife hangs things differently), stepped back to look at it, and came back, looked at the last thing on my list, and started writing this; powerful stuff, right? lol

Actually, it’s more powerful than one might imagine. By the end of my writing this post I’ll add an image, which you’ll see above, schedule when I want it to go live, and I’ll have accomplished something I can remove from my list. The list has allowed me the first steps towards being able to focus on what I need to address, but each item also allows me to live in the moment and work, as a leader, on parts of my business, since not everything on my list is personal.

Back in the days when I was an everyday director, I almost always had one thing I wanted to address for that day. It might mean putting together a report, setting up a meeting, or maybe even just sitting at my desk thinking about ways to improve or stay right where we were. Even when I had to help put out fires, I always had my one goal for each day to come back to, and in my own way I was living in the moment as a leader. Knowing what I wanted to address kept me on point and allowed me to actually be a leader as opposed to someone always fixing problems.

What’s funny is that, back then, even though I typed a lot, I also wrote more often. I loved pulling out a yellow legal pad and writing out ideas, because it was easier then to look at a pad and make corrections than it was reading a computer monitor. I loved writing things and practicing the art of writing, and producing work that was visible, not only to myself but to others. If I ended a day with 4 or 5 pieces of paper in front of me, even if it was all personal brainstorming, it looked impressive, and it felt impressive.

How often do you feel like you’re not living in the moment? Does this concept seem like something you might like to try, if you’re not doing it, or if sometimes you feel as though you’re not concentrating on something as well as you know you should? Let me know, and enjoy the process.
 

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