New Year’s reSOLUTIONS: Be All There

Jaclyn Crawford Foresight, New Year's reSOLUTIONS 1 Comment

Author and speaker Erik Wahl vows to put multitasking aside and make 2014 the year of experiencing the moment.

Lincoln lincolnIn 2014, multitasking will be dead to me. Like you, I’ve read the statistics. Driving while talking on a cell phone is the equivalent of drunk driving. Texting while driving makes us 23 times more likely to get into an accident. When we are distracted by incoming emails and phone calls, our IQs drop 10 points—the equivalent of losing a night’s sleep.

For long enough I’ve fooled myself into believing that I can or even need to be an artist, an entrepreneur, an author, a husband, a father and a friend simultaneously. I’ve suckered myself into the “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” mentality. I’ve even bought into the notion that I’m somehow immune to the scientific studies that say multitasking makes us approximately 40 percent less productive than if we focused on the most important task at hand.

In the new year, I will live out the confession that I’m less effective—sometimes far less effective—as an artist, entrepreneur, author, husband, father and friend when I am not singularly present in the moments of each day. I am also less satisfied.

This is not a confession that I will no longer be all those things. It is a commitment that I will be the most of every one of them at each appropriate moment. All artist when on stage. All entrepreneur when in a meeting. All dad when in the backyard. All husband when after hours. All friend when on the town. These roles are who I am. And I am all of who I am when I am only one at a time.

Liberty with broom

I will not lose all other roles for the sake of one no more than I can lose my ears for the sake of seeing. I will simply choose to focus rather than juggle, to fire arrows rather than shotgun shells. It is the only way I will hit the bullseye without simultaneously destroying the target.

I’m done trying to answer emails, calls and texts when I’m being a husband or father; done rethinking yesterday’s conversations in the midst of the present one; done worrying about tomorrow’s innovations in the middle of delivering today’s. Just the thought makes my spirit soar higher.

The zeitgeist of our age is to always be on, always be available, always be making rain. But the reality is that we rarely stop to look at what our rain is actually growing. I’ve taken inventory of my harvest, and while it’s not dead, it’s not all it could be. I want a richer harvest from my days. The only path is being present in my moments. Wherever I am, I will be all there.


wahl 2014 publicityErik Wahl is a speaker and author of “UnThink.” He contributed to Issue No. 7 of Forefront.

Comments 1

  1. Shirley G. Perry-Church

    As always, Erik Wahl never ceases to amaze. I am in total agreement with his self assessment. I love where he will hit the bulls eye without destroying the target. I am also all over the place in my thoughts and actions. I cannot sleep because my mind never stops planning for current and future events. I am certainly going to do all that I can to follow this advice to be most appropriate at the designated times. Thanks so much for your commitment to your followers, your family, and your life. It is well received.

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