Are you easily distracted? Do you have a tiny attention span? Do you get bored very quickly? Do you find yourself lost in thought in meetings?
Well, you know what? Concentration is SO overrated. Unless of course, you are a yoga guru.
And you know what else? It isn’t about being unable to concentrate. It’s about not wanting to concentrate.
Personally, I consider meetings, massages, yoga, a long movie, or anything else that imposes relaxation or long periods of concentration torturous. “Dude”, I’d be thinking, “I need to check my email, go buy bread, call my mother, try to think of a creative solution for some work-related project, wonder what the best route back home is, if I have enough cash…”
Want to torture Roba? Sit me down and make me listen to things I find boring.
When I was very, very young, I did not know how to handle my need for distraction, and I did not do well at school or have many friends. Not that that’s a surprise, society shuns any one with different needs. I was constantly day dreaming, drifting off to random thought, getting bored after a few seconds. People naturally thought I was stupid.
Then, when I was in 4th grade, I learned that the secret to doing better in life was to embrace my need for distraction- doodling during classes helped me concentrate, doing a million things while studying allowed me to remember what I was reading, watching TV while playing a game let me get through both, taking a minute off work to tweet helps me refresh.
And that was that. And today, I am the queen of productive distraction.
This little, and perhaps boring to read, post was inspired by this Wired article (I love Wired). Some excerpts:
Wired.com: What does it mean to be distracted?
Jackson: Literally, it means to be pulled away to something secondary. There’s also an a interesting, archaic definition that fell out of favor in the 18th century: being pulled to pieces, being scattered. I think that’s a lovely term.
Our society right now is filled with lovely distractions — we have so much portable escapism and mediated fantasy — but that’s just one issue. The other is interruption — multitasking, the fragmentation of thought and time. We’re living in highly interrupted ways. Studies show that information workers now switch tasks an average of every three minutes throughout the day. Of course that’s what we have to do to live in this complicated world.