I had a good long think today about what my problems are when it comes to doing my work. I think I have several issues, all of which are related to being a scatterbrain.
- I start too many projects all at the same time and get overwhelmed to the point of not doing anything useful at all. I am usually very enthusiastic about each new thing until something equally (or more) exciting and shiny comes along.
- My brain tries to deal with too many thoughts at the same time and then feels overloaded so I end up doing passive procrastination activities to give it time to (supposedly) recover.
- My house is a mess. I try to tidy it and spend long periods trying to sort through various items of clutter only to then berate myself for not getting any work done. Then I sit down to work and realise that the chaos around me is not conducive to periods of concentration.
- I forget stuff. I have spent countless minutes and hours of my life walking into rooms only to find myself standing there looking like an idiot not knowing why the hell I walked in there in the first place. I figure it’s a huge time waster.
- I surf the internet in tangents. At any one time I am likely to have about 15 tabs open. Then, when I want to closed them I go through them all and can’t possibly get rid of any of them because they are all so important I can’t bring myself to close them. I will deal with them later, I think. No, saving them to my bookmarks doesn’t seem satisfactory to my brain right now. I don’t know why.
There are other symptoms. I think you get the idea.
But this post isn’t about what is wrong with me, or you for that matter. It might even be a good thing, according to various internet sources. I’m not sure if the sources are created by other, equally scatterbrained individuals trying to make us all feel better or if there is actually any real science involved. Regardless, I think it’s about time I got to grips with some of the more annoying side effects of my brain type.
Yesterday I had brain overload and felt almost helpless with brain paralysis. This is not good. So here’s what I am going to do:
Let’s go for the obvious one first: I’m going to write lists. I already do this but occasionally I forget (well, duh!) and on other days I write too many separate lists and leave them in different locations in the house. Instead of all this nonsense I am going to write a daily (manageable) list in one location – my new Life Planner (from Pirongs) that I love. Perhaps list central will help with any list issues I’ve been having.
The lists I am going to write can’t be too long, though. Oh no. That just makes life infinitely worse. They have to be manageable: the items need to be specific and attainable in a day and there can’t be too many things on the list. I’ll be ticking them off as I go along for that satisfaction of having got stuff done.
I’m also going to plan all sorts of stuff out in, wait for it, my Life Planner. That’s all my writing, my blog posts, jobs I need to do, appointments, you get the idea. Just don’t ask me what I will do if I lose the planner. (I know some of you folks might recommend Evernote or something similar to plan out lists etc. Trust me, I have tried this but I just end up with a whole bunch of haphazard lists in there instead and I kept forgetting passwords so couldn’t sync on different devices etc. For now, the Life Planner will do.)
Lastly I’m going to do is feature any useful apps, planning tools, books, ideas, etc on this blog! I’m constantly finding ideas and useful bits and bobs but I sometimes forget about them or lose them. I think if I write about them in my blog it will make it easier for me (and maybe some other scatterbrain writers) to find them! Hooray!
To all you scatterbrains out there, don’t change how you are. It’s probably how you come up with so many ideas. Instead, learn how to manage that scatterbrain activity so that it doesn’t get the better of you.
If you have any suggestions of your own that help to manage the erratic thought train in your mind, let me know!