Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Too much information, too many tasks

“Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense.”
Gertrude Stein

It’s true. We’re overwhelmed daily. From remembering a multitude of passwords to the errands and tasks that fill up our working and home lives, we juggle thoughts like so many plates that sometimes fall to the ground.

I have a dear friend who uses his shower time as ‘thinking time’. Another plots on her daily train ride. I read murder mysteries and marvel at the insights into human nature to help me navigate elsewhere (not all characters are murderers).

But either we’re so busy Doing - or busier Thinking - that the ability to instinctively, easily walk through a task can be lost. We talk AT each other. We distrust the simple. We don’t have time to listen to our inner voice, our common sense.

When I’m tired I just follow these guidelines:
• It doesn’t have to be complicated.
• It can wait till later unless a life/livelihood is at stake.
• Listen before responding.
• Don’t jump to a solution.
• Assure the person in front of you that you’re there with them.

And often problems resolve, people stop spinning, and the obvious, sensible solution presents itself.

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