Trying to do too much? Nothing gets done.

I was talking with a client recently about the idea we have too much on our plate and are trying to get too much done at once – which, unfortunately, leads to nothing getting accomplished. It made me think about how we can do a lot of things in our lives, but only a few things really well.

Say you have 17 vases lined up on a table. Each vase represents something you are trying to get done. In your hand you have a pitcher of water. You fill up your pitcher and begin moving down the line pouring a little into each vase as you pass. Every so often, you have to run back to the faucet and fill up the pitcher again. Imagine how long it will take you to fill up those vases. Forever! It is so much easier to pick just a few things (vases) and focus on those. Line up two to three vases and pour water into them. They are much quicker to fill and you can then go back and select a few more vases to work on.

You can approach life the same way. Pick two or three things to be your primary focus. Pour your energy into them until the tasks are completed. Bask in your sense of accomplishment for a while and then move on choosing two to three other tasks. Your energy cannot support too many activities at once – you are more likely to grow frustrated and give up. Accomplishment takes too long. Success is too far away.

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