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Uni-tasking?

Posted Jun 08 2011 1:30pm

Thank you for all the kind comments on Liam’s birth story — I’m still digesting the whole experience and cannot believe I have an almost 6-week old baby! Scarily, he’s already growing like a weed; he rolled over tummy to back the other day and is finally outgrowing his newborn outfits. He’s going to be in college before I know it! :)

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Now, onto a question for you all: how do you settle down and uni-task? I am typically the queen of multi-tasking — I even wrote a guest post on Rose’s blog with my best multitasking tips — but these days I really need to stop, breathe and take on one thing at a time. Aside from wanting to take full advantage of every waking second I have with my little man while I’m on maternity leave (dear self: reading blogs while nursing doesn’t help mom and baby bond), uni-tasking is also beneficial for other parts of my life.

Multiple studies have shown that people who eat at the table without TV, computer, cell phone, etc. distracting them eat more slowly, recognize their fullness signals better and eat less, and as a result lose weight. Just think about the last time you sat in front of your favorite show with a snack, only to look down what feels like seconds later and find an empty bowl? Replace show with random surfing on the internet and snack with ice cream, and you’d have my morning yesterday :-/

I’ve also found that multi-tasking affects my personal relationships, especially with Matt. We only get a few awake hours together these days, and if Liam’s asleep when Matt’s home or he’s handling baby duty, I’m running around like a chicken with my head cut off, trying to do dishes, shovel dinner in my mouth, and read, all while attempting to have a meaningful conversation. Doesn’t work. And phone calls made while nursing/cleaning/rocking a fussy baby should barely count as correspondence; I’m not giving full attention to anything I’m doing and it shows.

So, how do I transition from a multi-tasker to a uni-tasker, especially when the to-do list piles up and my time is seriously limited? I’m going to start by shutting off my laptop as much as I can at night in favor of family time. I’m also going to start a checklist of tasks that should get done each day so I can plan my nap breaks around them (and also shuttle some off to Matt when he’s home :) ). Any other suggestions?

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