Thursday, 15 May 2014

From distracted to disciplined

Lately everything in my life and in my head feels like a giant ping pong game.  I can't seem to finish anything I start. I first noticed it in regards to reading.  It's completely normal for me to have three or four books on the go (different genres.)  But usually I finish at least 75% of what I start (I don't make myself finish something that isn't holding my interest.)  Lately I've started and abandoned so many books within the first couple of chapters, not because they aren't interesting but because I can't seem to stay focused.

I've also had several writing projects that I've jumped into and then left after a chapter or two.  I have some really, great solid ideas that I'm excited and passionate about and should leave me desperate for time to steal away and write.  But I can't stay focused.

I can't even stay in a two minute game of solitaire without jumping over to Sudoku.

I'm sure much of it has to do with the fact that I'm still getting very little sleep.  A couple of hours here and there leave me in a general fog.  Regardless, I'm tired of feeling so unproductive.  If these are the sleep-deprived, toddler overwhelmed circumstances in which I must work, then I must learn to do just that.

I have a strong feeling that what I need is some good old-fashioned discipline.  While being at home means that I have a never-ending load of work, it also means that I am my own boss, which leads to a laissez-faire attitude when it comes to deadlines.  I need to do the laundry but people can pull their clothes from an unfolded basket if I don't get to the folding.  That child that really needs some attention will still breathe and function if I'm too exhausted.  The toy room will look like a bomb hit it ten minutes after I clean it, and so it's easy to not bother.  But all this doesn't mean that I'm working as effectively as I can or should.

This is by no means a personal guilt trip.  I think guilt is useless and have never given it corner in my life.  This is motivation.  I want to be doing things more orderly and more effectively not because someone else is defining expectations, but because I believe in these expectations myself.

I'm not sure what the answer is just yet.  These are the early ramblings of desire without a plan.  My first stab might be just to simplify.  Stop multitasking and just focus one on thing at a time.  Discipline myself to stay with one task and see it through to completion.  We'll see how it goes.

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