Something old is new again (it’s called monotasking)

something old is new again It's called monotaskingI have been outside as much as I can this spring.  Even though the vibrant colors and fresh air surround me, I continued checking my phone frequently. I admit I have a habit of checking my phone too often, diverting me from the experience and enjoyment of the splendor all around me.

Recently I read an article in the New York Times about the growing popularity of mono-tasking; reducing distractions and doing one thing at a time.  For decades, I had prided myself on my “multi-tasking skills”, now I realize that multi-tasking isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

Monotasking can be challenging and like any new behavior it requires effort.  Studies show that when you limit your interruptions, you get more done, make fewer errors, and increase your creativity and enjoyment.

It’s astonishing what you can ‘pick up on’ when you really listen to your spouse, child, friend or coworker.  Both in my therapy practice and personal life, I have noticed that distractions are often the source of family conflicts.

I’ve been turning off my cell-phone when I want to be more mindful. I continue to carry my phone with me. Shutting it off eliminates my tendency to take a quick peek and get sidetracked.

Hopefully this gentle reminder to pay attention will help you to be more attentive and optimistic.

Your optimism challenge:

What is one thing you can do to limit your distractions and help you focus more on what really counts?

I’d love to hear what works for you.  Share your feedback, questions or comments at

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