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  • Writer's pictureTammy Arlene

Automation to Get More Done vs. Mindfulness

Have you felt conflicted lately? I feel like I am constantly surrounded by contradictions! I'll share my thoughts on one that has come to the forefront for me.

We are told to use technology to get more done. To use apps, multi-task, sign up for auto renewals and rely on our smart phones for most everything so we can free up time - to do more stuff, and make ourselves busier! Are we helping ourselves by doing this? Or just creating a more frenzied life that is too stuffed full of tasks that drain our energy? Phew, I am tired just typing that.

As a contradiction, a new wellness trend is a focus on mindfulness. Experts say we need to slow down, be in the moment, aware of what is going on in our lives at all times. Focusing on our breath, feeling each footfall as we walk, meditating and listening to our bodies creates a happier and healthier life is good for us. So, should we walk around in a daze or sit criss cross apple sauce all afternoon? Nap our afternoons away as we contemplate how our heart beat works?

Can we balance the two? Is there a happy medium?

Let me give you an example of how I should be more mindful. I've been automating, relying on technology and living a frenzied life lately. I felt like I was getting more done, but truth is, I was getting lots of things half-done!

Last week while rushing from one work meeting to another, I ran out of gas! My handy automated gas gauge and "miles to empty" gadget malfunctioned. I received notice a while back about a recall on the system that I ignored because I was so darned "busy." I ended up waiting on the side of the freeway, other cars swishing by at 75 miles per hour, until a good friend (Thanks Deb!) arrived with a can of gas. Had I been more mindful, I would have realized that I drove for over a week, and many miles, on that tank of gas without the needle moving on the gauge. Better yet, I would have taken my car in for the necessary repair when I received the notice! I wasn't mindful, I was too busy rushing around from place to place and this incident caused me to slow down (or literally STOP) in my tracks to think about how much I rely on technology. The car is going in for repair Saturday, by the way!

Yet, I do have a lot to accomplish with my job in management/insurance sales. Then there is family to care for, finishing my BA, and finding time to work on writing! Setting up automatic bill pay has been a big help, I no longer write checks to mail out. And, I am thrilled to have discovered a wonderful bit of household technology that I have come to rely on. This may sound silly to many, but I asked for a robot vacuum for Christmas. This gadget has saved me so much time. Sweeping and vacuuming have never been mindful acts to me, and I am happy to automate them. Coming home to clean floors is such a treat.

I have decided to compromise. Yes, I will continue to automate. At the same time, I will focus on slowing down and completing one task at a time. Most importantly, if automation saves me time during the day, I will use that time to take a breath (or five) instead of filling every minute with tasks that may or may not be important. I will take time for "me" and my health by not working or using my phone while I eat scheduled, healthy meals.

In the next post, I'll share what I am doing to get things done more efficiently. I am a work in progress, and glad you have joined me on my journey.

P.S. Have you had a chance to read my book? If you have read it, I would appreciate if you would give me a review!

It is on sale now! Hardcover, paperback and ebook are reduced on Amazon! Search "Tammy Arlene Coming Home" to find it! I'd love to hear your thoughts.

All my best,

Tammy Arlene

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