Sunday, March 05, 2006

An A.D.D. World – or : An A.D.D. America, Revised

I have discovered that we cannot get frustrated or in the least bothered by the A.D.D. in our co-workers, partners, family folks, etc I believe we all are, to some extent, somewhat A.D.D. Think about it?! It's the society we live in that REQUIRES us to be that way: you hardly ever see a job ad in the paper that does not require us to be "multi-tasked". Well, you cannot be multi-tasked unless you're paying attention to 10 things at the same time: answer the phone, while reading a new e-mail, while opening the postal mail, while talking to your boss who's giving you yet a new task and all these have to be done efficiently and fast, so that we all can meet the deadlines! And it doesn't stop there: we drive home and the cell rings while we have to drive, and yield, and look for a jay-walker or another jackass driver who's cutting us off, and grab a snack from the purse since our blood sugar is low from spreading ourselves too thin in the first place, and we need an afternoon jumpstart, because we're driving to school, after a 10 hour work day! Then we get home, and we have to feed the pets, while opening the mail, and turning the TV on to see what else has been going on in the world, while the phone rings and it's our friend Alice who wants to go out for a drink tonight or maybe Saturday, and we're listening to the news while trying to figure out what in the world is on our calendars for Saturday anyways, while the cat decides to flip the water bowl and make a mess on the carpet, and oh, shit! we have a "sales" party tomorrow with a bunch of "fancy ladies" and the carpet is now wet and stained"Sorry Alice, let me call you right back"! It makes my head spin just to think about all this, although it's pretty much an accurate description of my (and many of the people's I know!) daily routine. And our brains get "trained" to constantly LOOK FOR the next thing to do. Never for the "what's here and now", but for "what else" I need to be doing to keep up...
The opposite of A.D.D. is focused, but you cannot be focused on ONE thing alone anymore: you would be stampeded on by the world, run over and left behind! The only way we can keep up, we think, is by rushing onto the next thing on the list while still doing the one before. I wonder sometimes where and if all this will stop one day?!
You know, Napoleon was so unique because him doing 5 things at one time was really a RARE, and indeed special talent: it's not customary for the human brain to function like that! (I am obviously not a doctor, but I don't think it is). By pushing our bodies in this manner, to make something so rare be part of our usual life, we're defying nature in the first place, and something, somewhere, is gotta snap! And therefore, we're all "diagnosed" nowadays! (man, wouldn't Freud be proud of me??!!). We should all be, anyways. Should we all be on Ritalin then?!
I go to Yoga class, and I lie in Savasana and the instructor says "let go" and you're supposed to LET THE HECK GO and just focus on breathing and just being and I am thinking: "Shit! Bills need to be paid tonight!" and "I haven't vacuumed since 2 weeks ago" and I hate myself right then and there. And yet I move on. Gotta catch up!
The only thing we don't do while doing other things that "have to" be done is relax, and breathe. We never think of that as a part of our "multi-tasking", and it's a shame. I read in one of my Yoga books one time, that "the giant turtle breathes 4 times a minute, and is calm, and lives many hundreds of years, whereas the dog and the monkey breathe 40-60 times a minute, and are restless and excitable and live 10-15 years only." It seems to me, we all have a lot to learn from the quiet and calm turtle. Don't you think?! Happy new week, everyone! And PLEASE, remember to breathe, amongst all the other things ...

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