“You don’t rush for anyone or anything,” one of my most favorite people in the world said to me. “Everything you do, you do in Barb’s own time.”
It was meant as an attack. Instead it was the biggest compliment that person could have paid me. I have strived all my life to live in the moment and enjoy what I’m doing at any given moment, instead of mindlessly rushing to finish so that I can move on to the next mindless task. Now I had confirmation that I’d accomplished it.
On the inside, I was doing the happy dance of joy. On the outside, I turned around, probably rolled my eyes, and walked away.
It was just one more reminder of how different people can be in their perceptions. And engaging in a rebuttal to defend myself would have been an argument waiting to happen. (In addition to not rushing, picking my battles is another requirement of living in Barb’s World.)
The best way to speed up, is to slow down. Speed leads to mistakes. Mistakes must be corrected. So in the end, it takes longer to do things if you rush to get them done. Not to mention the fact that you don’t get to enjoy what you’re doing it, when you’re doing it.
And then there’s multi-tasking. That state of kidding yourself into thinking you’re doing so many things that you are fast-forwarding yourself to the last thing you’re ever going to do before you start enjoying your life.
News alert. Multi-tasking — unless it involves the washing machine, dishwasher and pool vacuum working simultaneously while you sip an adult beverage on the patio — is excellent training if your goal is to win the gold medal in the I Do Things Half Assed category in the game of life.
I don’t like to multi-task. Sometimes my job as a not-famous-at-all journalist forces me to multi-task. Like when I’m writing a story about the latest shooting in South Florida and a producer comes by to tell me there’s been another shooting and I need to write that up too. Writing both stories simultaneously is so much more efficient when I’m using important words like “alleged” “suspect” and “still on the loose.”
But multi-tasking is right up there with Doing Things Fast to guarantee you’re going to do things very wrong.
Finally, there’s that God awful thing called Doing Nothing at All. It’s like if every minute of my day isn’t filled with some important task — you know, like watering the plants on the patio after it’s been pouring all afternoon — I’m in imminent danger of not fulfilling my life’s purpose.
I find that doing nothing at all once in a while gives me the energy I need to go slow and get things done fast when I’m busy not multi-tasking.
Instead of criticizing me, learn a lesson from me.
Slow down. Do one thing at a time. Do nothing at all. Enjoy the journey.
It really is the destination.