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Multi-tasking

Multi-tasking (Photo credit: Donald Lee Pardue)

“You are going to hate me for this,” his lips split into a mischievous smile as he directs me to a blog post.

Fabulous, I think as read the words.   Conviction sinks a jagged bite into my soul and even though I laugh, I feel panic rising.  My husband is challenging my very nature, the structure of my day.  I breathe through it, thanking God for a husband who loves me enough to encourage me to try something different, something that will freak me out at first.

Multi-tasking, it is how I get through each day.  Each item on my check-list is often combined with another task:

Read my Bible while exercising.

Help the children with homework while making supper.

Look through my inbox while listening to a story.

Fold laundry while learning Romanian.

Clean the toilets while calling family members on the phone.

Update social media while watching television with my husband…

I’ve noticed the house is not as clean, the children are constantly pulling on me and calling my name, my husband sighs when I bring my mobile device to the couch, and the laundry seems never done.  But, I justify, this is my busy season.  I have young children, I’m launching a ministry and writing career while juggling the life of a pastor’s wife and mommy.  Without multi-tasking, how will I get to write, study, read, post, pray, clean, eat, and drive?   How will I ever get my work done if I don’t – but my attention is skewed, my focus is lacking, my worship is suffering.  If I truly believe that I should do all as unto the Lord, but I am not doing any of it fully, then I doubt this is the holy, fragrant sacrifice that the Lord will find pleasing.

It really didn’t take a blog post for me to recognize my need to reorient, re-strategize how I go about accomplishing tasks and loving my family. I saw a while ago that I needed to focus more on my Bible study, and I try to never multi-task that. I have recently adjusted the rest time with my husband at the end of the day; if I have not scheduled work-related posts, blogs, or tweets, then it is too late and I leave all mobile devices out of reach and only answer emergency calls or texts.  Being in the ministry, work is often 24/7, but setting some boundaries is necessary.  In both of these areas, when I am diligent with my focus, I am more fulfilled, more relaxed, more energized, and more productive.  So, knowing this to be true, it is time to reevaluate how I get done what needs to get done, and perhaps challenge you as well.

Over the rest of this week, I am making mental notes of what and why I multi-task.  Beginning next Monday, I will be doing my best to intentionally accomplish one task at a time.  There will be cases in which I will have to shift from one task to another before finishing, such is life, but I will do my utmost to do all I can and then shut down what must wait.

The truth is, I am nervous about this little experiment.  I am anxious about what this will reveal about myself, but I refuse to hide from myself any longer and would rather allow God to shine the light in the darkest corridors of my life so that I can clean out all that doesn’t bring Him the most glory.

How can you participate?  So glad you asked! 🙂  If you are so inclined, comment on what areas of your life you know are lacking focus. If you have a blog and would like to, you can add your link here or hop over to my facebook page http://www.facebook.com/jacquelinevaughnroe or http://www.facebook.com/veritaswomensministry and let me know how you are doing on this journey.

Here is the link to the blog that my husband referred me to:

http://blogs.hbr.org/2010/05/how-and-why-to-stop-multitaski/

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