When we’re engaged in any activity – whether it is checking email or eating dinner with the family – we often find ourselves feeling like we should be doing something else.
By thinking about whatever else we feel like we ought to be doing, we aren’t fully engaged in the moment.
We might think that by not being fully engaged (letting our mind wander to our to do list, for instance), we conserve energy.
But the problem is that emotions like guilt and anxiety (the emotions that cause us to pull away from full engagement) drain dramatic amounts of energy, as does the process of multi-tasking.
If we spend the time we’ve decided to spend on email feeling guilty or anxious about all of the other work that we have to do, doing our email will make us more exhausted then if we had been fully engaged.
If we instead fully commit to whatever we are doing in the moment, and tell any thoughts of guilt or anxiety that come up that they can wait, we are actually more likely to have the energy to eventually tackle all of the things that we want to.