By Dida Clifton
Years ago, I found this book on the clearance table that helped my marriage a great deal: “Men Are Like Waffles. Women Are Like Spaghetti.” The premise is that men do one thing at a time and rarely jump from square to square in the waffle of life. While women are more like spaghetti: a tangled mess. At least that’s what I took from it.
The talent of multi-tasking is one that we ladies are born with. We have many jobs: balancing duties of the household, raising children, volunteering, helping extended family, and following our dreams of a career or business ownership. With each generation, this list changes more and more. But dare I say, that no matter what some may think, men and women are just different.
As a military spouse, I worked in partnership with my husband. I supported his military career by taking care of the household, our daughters, and volunteering often. He supported us, took us to exotic places, and embraced all my crazy endeavors. I took immense pride in the fact that I could do many things at one time. My daughters turned out well, but I did burn a few dinners along the way and always seemed to be running behind.
Fast forward 20 years. Throw in smart phones, Bluetooth, text messages, email, employees, managers, and partners. I still think I’m the “bomb” for being able to multi-task; but recently learned that’s not true.
To do two things at once is to do neither.
— Publilius Syrus
Monotasking is the new buzzword taking over our world. Do one thing and do it well. I use this when working with entrepreneurs who are struggling with how to grow their business. I tell them to pick one thing, master it, and focus on just that.
What if we did that in our daily lives? Start every day by declaring three things you need to accomplish and focus on them. Then, choose one thing and focus on only that for a set amount of time.
It starts with telling yourself it is okay to do just one thing at a time.
It’s okay to just make breakfast with the kids and start the day in a happy place.
It’s okay to turn off the email while working on a project for an hour or two.
It’s working for me. Give it a try and let me know how it goes.Dida Clifton is the CEO of The Office Squad, which specializes in changing the way small businesses grow by providing extensive back office, administrative support to maximize efficiency. The Office Squad can be contacted by visiting theofficesquad.com or by phone at 702.649.3495.