Anything I Can Do I Can Do Better…x2Posted: January 17, 2011
There are those of us who can only do one thing at a time. We do that thing to the utmost of our ability, and then we move on to the next task on the list. Then there are those of us who feel like the only way to be productive is to do a minimum of two things at once (and that’s on a slow day). We go about life simultaneously (so we think) getting things done. We are taking care of business times two. Or three. Or four. It all depends on how daring you want to be. But in the process of undertaking the role of WonderWoman (or SuperMan, whatever the case may be) are we really accomplishing what we think we are?
Is it better to accomplish a lot of things in a mediocre way, or should we focus on fully and accurately completing fewer tasks on the list?
I waver. Sometimes I feel like the only way to get done what needs to get done is to multitask. There are household chores and responsibilities that have to be done simultaneously to keep our lives in working order. Then there are days when I feel like the only logical thing to do is to expend all my energies making sure that a few things get done just as they should be with no corners cut and no shortcuts taken.
I blame graduate school. It would have been virtually impossible to complete graduate school without the gift of multitasking. No one can read that many books one at a time and write that many papers one at a time in the time frame of a semester. If you can, I want to know your secrets. Actually, I’m not sure that blame is the right word. I think graduate school is responsible for honing an innate skill.
I’m sure there are people who would suggest that championing the ways of a multitasker is wrong. But I am equally as certain that there are multitaskers who would claim that there are not enough hours in the day to accomplish things the old fashioned way. I suppose in cases like this the only thing to do is to decide for yourself, leaving all matter of scientific data in the dust.
Now excuse me. I have to finish the breakfast I’m cooking while I research data on how to save the world from itself while I pay the bills while I answer the phone…