Being Organized Allows Attention for Multiple Goals

Whole lot of time on my smart phone during travels:

Things can change in the blink of an eye.   In fact they always do.   I want to look a bit closer at how the ability to organize and manage tasks can prevent problems in goal-pursuit (in everyday life).  Organization and division of attention seem to play a key role in keeping a person functioning across life domains.  A person may have several areas of life that operate as distinct systems.  For example:  home life, work, school, and other parts of social life can all be domains that a person operates in, with attention and levels of focus that are differentiated between each of these parts of life.   Once the wheels are in motion – and a goal is set, the drive towards a goal can develop inertia.   When a person has developed a holistic perspective and is able to manage many goals at once – individual goal- drives can keep on rolling – even when a person’s focus is not necessarily on that specific goal.  Organization and preparedness facilitate the progress and advancement of multiple goals.   In pursuit of a specific goal: strong ability to reason, optimism, courage and good-planning can propel you toward that goal, even when your focus is alternated to another goal.  Better overall organization can help allow for the pursuit and attainment of many goals at once.

Co-operation is often needed to both plan and carry out tasks.  The amount of cooperation needed tends to be directly proportionate to the size of a person’s agenda.  The correlation in this relationship becomes most pronounced and can really have an impact when tasks become greater than what one person can handle on their own.  Good people-skills make an attribute that can help a person organize others.  Alternatively, intimidation can also play a role in organizing, but I believe that this is a less favourable device in a system that I think should have more utilitarian value.   In a less aggressive, more co-operative system: the ability to delegate tasks becomes easier largely based on trust and confidence.  A person is influential when they are able to harness this power (of confidence), acquire help in achieving goals and can in turn set goals in motion without the need for acute focus.

A holistic sense of organization requires sufficient attention.  For smaller operations, such as cleaning a closet – one person should typically manage, but for an entire set of current lifetime responsibilities or for example: a business or profession – organization usually requires teamwork and leadership.   Co-operation can allow attention to be spread as a group: to a larger range of tasks.  When organization is failing: it seems to become more likely that problems can occur.  A sequence of events can unravel very quickly if a person has not planned sufficiently.  This can also depend on work load and the cooperation of others- up to an including the efficient functioning of entire networks and society.  Such a broad scope is a look at the macrocosm (in some ways) whereas the microcosm of one person’s day to day challenges still are affected by the holistic functioning.

Organization can be crucial.  Just as chance favours the prepared mind, the opposite seems to hold true when there is a lack of planning and organization.  For example – even though everything is going well in one area of life – if the big picture has not been taken into account, responsibilities that are left unattended can turn into a problem when you least expect it.

Recently, I had been putting off repairs to our bathtub.   It just seemed less important to me – partly because it was functional as is!   This task was important to other members of the family, and by putting it off, or procrastinating – really I had let my responsibility slide. Then when I started to work on the project (by removing the caulking) I found myself forced to complete the project in a rush.   I had too many commitments at once.  I already an engagement with other members of my family – outside of the chore.  Also another set of events at both work and school were already unfolding.  This was a bottle neck – as mentioned in the poem below.  This is actually a critical time and I believe that balance can be maintained if a person does not over-react to problems, but instead learns from them, has patience and carries on.

I had spent the day accompanying the kids to the fair as I mentioned in the previous blog.  When I arrived home, I had plans to go out for dinner.  In between this I had great pressure to repair the bathtub.   I had half an hour to complete a two hour job. That procrastination led to a last minute search for the bathtub repair supplies.

I searched high and low for the gear. In the garage – trouble waited.  Everything from camping supplies to seasonal decorations filled the garage… No cars, but couches, recycling, guitars and everything else the family has collected.  My ‘desk’ with my lap top was actually a shelving unit that seemed to be working out.  I began looking for the tub repair supplies.  In my hurry to find the caulking tube – I did not notice that a heavy grill was sliding off the top shelf of this cabinet.  Unceremoniously, the grill fell off the shelf and smashed my laptop directly below it.  It seems fate was saying, “pull your socks up – more attention needs to be spent on this big piece of the puzzle: organization at home.”  The garage needs to be cleaned on a regular basis.  The tub repair task should have been taken head on.  Either of these tasks could also have been advanced by delegating the chores.  It is these moments that organization must be assessed.

It seems that I was not prepared, and perhaps had let some responsibilities lapse.  A more accurate reason for these problems may have been my inability to delegate or find co-operation. The household organization is everyone’s responsibility, and I am not home all day.   Finding the right tone and charisma to encourage co-operation is not always easy.   I find that to encourage co-operation it is important to have a good sense of trust and have built credibility through hard work.  When this doesn’t work – perhaps that responsibility will still need more personal supervision.  And when I searched the shelving unit for the repair supplies – within this disorganized part of my house (microcosm) – chance was not in my favour, because I was not prepared.  This added to the test of my determination.   Because I maintained a calm attitude and did not start blaming people, I had a chance to re-organize.  Now I was able to see that I must address these responsibilities head on, and also through calm and reasonable conversation.  I was able to make progress and carry on with my goals with new determination and organization – even though I have had to do a lot of typing on my smart phone for this blog!

Things were not quite set to spend the time I wanted on my laptop- and chance let me know this.  In the waiting period for the keyboard to be repaired, I am partly left to rely on other faculties of my organization: like my phone and my family PC.  More importantly I am encouraged to look at the bigger picture.  This is HUGE.  To me, it is so important to see how all goal-pursuit is taking place, and where more attention is needed.  Sometimes it takes a slight lapse to point to the need for more attention.  Planning, even in point form in a document can be effective.  It is important to be able to rely on your network, and how you access that network, what parts you address, your attention, your focus and your collective integrity.  If you have a reliable network and people co-operating with you, organization can be much easier and more effective.  A greater awareness of how this organization is running can provide the opportunity to adjust and better align you with success.

The optimum confidence seems to be found when we have first taken care of all our other important responsibilities.  This allows full concentration and focus on the goal at hand. To be effective in many individual goals – it is necessary to give each goal attention – even if that is through the co-operation of others.  Confidence and a genuine attitude can help convince people to be on your team and cooperate.  When organization is effective- problems are less – and ‘chance’ seems to be kinder.  It is important to be caring, with focus and attention to the microcosm AND the macrocosm.

Bottle Neck

Subtle motion influences my mood,

Stupid decision changes my day,

In one small step, a life shuffles,

A word is said, as this twist stays,

Get to the next emotion,

Provide it,

Embrace it,

It’s good.

Silent notion persuades my mind,

Stupid equation takes up my day,

In one short breath, a life suffers,

A word is said, as this prayer pays,

Get to the next emotion,

Strive for it,

Praise it,

It’s good,

We are all confined,

Economy, Society, Personality,

Give it all strength.

Concentrate in less than a second.

Please remember that I consider this poetry in some cases to really be just words thrown together- meant to generate interest, through expression but not necessarily portraying an absolute… Sometimes just one viewpoint at one fleeting moment. Other times: Yes I am trying to say something more absolute: definitely meaningful and that I full-heartedly believe in.

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