April 26, 2010- The Anti-Multi-Tasker
“Don’t multitask. Dividing your attetion leads to confusion and weakened focus.”- Deepak Chopra, Reinventing the Body, Resurrecting the Soul
For a long time, I considered multitasking the ultimate way to increase revenue, productivity and use time wisely. Nevermind that this approach left me drained and nearly brain dead. Obviously, how I felt really mattered not at all, just as long as I could get EVERYTHING done within my self imposed deadlines. More about self imposed deadlines on another day….
I was accomplishing a lot, of that there was no doubt. I was booking, promoting, working radio plans, distributing cds (I wonder how much of my life has been spent at the post office) counseling clients and managing a house (I’m a clean freak). But I was literally exhausted all of the time. There was not a peaceful night’s sleep as I mulled dead dates in the middle of tour calendars or worried over money. Because, despite my workaholic life, funds were still an issue.
March 2009 brought a revalation. I was reading Melanie Mulhall’s book Living the Dream: A Guidebook for Job Seekers and Career Explorers. Melanie presents a series of questionnaires throughout the book, pressing one to really get to the crux of the career and direction matter. One question stood out as if it were written in big read flashing neon letters.
“What is the one thing in your job that you do now that you wish to never do again?”
I closed the book. I didn’t even have to think. Booking. It was the facet of my work I found tedious, irritating and dreadful. It was a soul sucker, a non money maker when compared to the hours it took and it left me discouraged at the end of every day I spent doing it.
I called the two clients I booked and explained that I would not be booking fall tours. They were shocked, not happy. But when I explained the hours it was taking to land gigs compared to the money I was making, they surprisingly understood.
It was liberating to take booking out of the multitasking day. My life instantly became simpler, and I looked for other energy and time suckers that were not resulting in income. It’s April 2010 and I’m still simplifying.
What’s the one thing you could subtract from your multitasking life? I’d love to hear about it.