Sunday, June 21, 2009

Exploration: Embracing Distraction

vine Some people find A.D.D. to be an affliction, but I think of it as a life style to be embraced. Why does this work for me? I am an explorer. I create meaning in my life by charting new territories, this may mean hiking, kayaking, or surfing the web. One day I read Sartre, the next a textbook on biochemistry. In between it all I am developing maps from one place to the next and noting connections that may turn out to be of benefit.  Of course there is a balance to be struck between following new pathways and being totally scattered. Here are three questions to consider.

  • Do you complete your projects? If your answer is no, then you may need to develop habits for noting areas to investigate. If you are not worried about losing a connection that occurs to you then you can return to your current activity right away and stay on it to completion.
  • Do you spend most of your time context switching? Many people think they are multi-tasking when in reality there are always in-between tasks rather than making progress in any of them.
  • Do you spend the first 10 minutes of each business meeting coming up to speed? This may be a hint that you have too many items on your plate at once, and you may be pulling your colleagues down. Only attend meetings where you are ready to add value on minute one.

If you find that you do complete projects and do add value in meetings and spend more time on task than not (even if the number of endeavors is high) then you may be managing the different threads of your life just fine. In this case you are a functioning trail blazer. If not, a few tricks of the trade can help you embrace your inner explorer.


  1. Another work of genius....

  2. Hi Dave dear,

    What a great post - It is timely for me as i have just put in an application for a second board position. I would only want to be a highly functioning trail blazer!

    However, who can resist asking for your tricks of the trade????

    Love what you are doing here

  3. Thanks for the inspiration about being ready to contribute from minute "one."