Choosing Attention over Time Management

Well you may wonder, what this is?

We had always been told to manage our time probably right from our school days and which did seep into our work as well.

But come to think of it, time is evasive and it can’t be managed.

There were days when a particular task which I had set for an hour extended for another couple of hours, this led to irritation that the other tasks were incomplete and there my peace of mind flew right out of the window! And then I would feel guilty and anxious!

Sounds familiar?

Also, being stuck to a task for a pre-defined period of time, limited the joy of imagination, creativity and exploration!

In my own experience, I tried to manage time but it is only in the past couple of years that I have realized that I was trying to manage something which is not in my control.

Rapt attention posed by a Cat

In the recent past, I have hit upon the beauty of giving my attention to the activity at hand at that particular moment! Let me tell you that it is not only fruitful but gives one a sense of complete satisfaction and balance as well.

Are you curious to know, how?

Well, let’s go unravel this wonderful tool:

1.List down the tasks / activities to be completed on a particular day or in a week –

Make a note of all the activities; job related, household chores, hobbies, wellbeing activities to be done in a day or the week. Also, make a note of the chores that are needed to be done on that very day at a particular time.

2. Introspect on the times that you are fresh or when you are energetic- Could be the day or the afternoon or the night

For many, early morning is the best time to carry out tasks like Writing | Planning a Project | Working out the Balance Sheet. For some, they are wired to be extremely active in the night to work on the above mentioned tasks. So each of us have a different way of functioning at different times. We need to figure out what times we are fresh and energetic.

For instance, break down the tasks for the day and place them through the day depending on your energy as the ones that could be done at the start of the day, Chores- can be done in the afternoon or early evening, making calls -late evenings or work calls -can be at a fixed time in the morning or afternoon.

3. Don’t multitask-

We have always been told to multitask but this does not help in any way- it doesn’t bring in the quality nor the feeling of satisfaction because your mind is torn between 2 or more things. It is best to be utterly focused on one activity, finish it with elan and then move onto the next.

A deer with rapt attention

4. Be with the activity totally and completely-

It doesn’t matter if you are working on a presentation or doing laundry or cleaning your room- be utterly focused and enjoy the activity. Make it fun! You will be able to do this when you don’t take everything seriously and do what is needed to be done at that point in time! This may seem ridiculous at the start but as the days pass by, you will realize the beauty of this and everything seems to flow well together and you begin to enjoy your day and life!

This act slowly helps you to do things which are needed to be done at that point in time consciously! And your mind will stop to categorize tasks as important or non-important!

5. Art of Saying No-

You may want to help people with a task that you are thoroughly adept in but don’t give in only because it is an obligation. Look into your day and week, whether if it is possible for you to take on that task and execute it with utter involvement without hampering your tasks at hand. There is no harm in saying ‘No!’

6. Don’t worry about the result-

The tasks don’t seem to reach their end point or are unsuccessful because we concentrate on the result and not the task at hand. For instance, I used to always bother about the result all the time but the day I decided to focus on the activity at hand, things seem to change within me and also at the end of the activity it was a job well done! Even if there were a few loopholes, it could always be worked upon because the focus was on the activity in all its entirety.

7. Create an ambience-

It is always best to create a certain dedicated atmosphere where you intend to do the activity everyday. For instance, if you are practising Yoga and Meditation, it is best to keep a separate space away from distractions, could be people or gadgets or noisy streets. The same goes for Work, where you are working on your presentation or writing- keep the table in a well lit space and again keep it devoid of distractions.

Well, one of the ways to enhance your attention span, focus and also the joy of being involved in any task is through Yoga and Meditation. I vouch for this as I have been practising Yoga and Meditation since the past 4 years and it has helped me tremendously to enhance my focus and also I have experienced the joy of satisfaction when performing a task or an activity with utter attention and involvement. I don’t tend to categorize tasks as Important or Non-Important and I certainly don’t limit myself to activities where I think I am capable of. I have gone ahead and worked on activities where I have had no knowledge of or the skills but I have learnt them and completed the task successfully.

So, be ready to march on, everything is possible, it is all in the mind! Must tell you, Yoga and Meditation surely does help in bringing about the stillness.

For me it is Yoga and Meditation, for you it could be something else. Do let me know what do you indulge in as a part of your wellbeing routine!

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