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Bending Space and Time : Five Time Bandits

Five Time Bandits

By Tom Evans

Time SpiralingThe normal human mind can only have one thought at a time.

Just think about what you are thinking about and the thing you are thinking about gets replaced with the thought you are having about that thought.

Just read the above sentence again, pause from reading this article and just check the validity of this notion.

So armed with this new knowledge about the way we think, this gives us the most amazing insight when it comes to our time management.

If we are focused on anything else other than the task in hand, time will slip away from us.

When you ponder this statement, Five Time Bandits emerge …

  1. Switching away from the current task
  2. Being diverted away from the current task
  3. Fretting over the past
  4. Worrying about the future
  5. Thinking about something else

If you read conventional time management books, they will be awash with tips and techniques that will help you with the first two Time Bandits. They help you to priortise better and how to stop interruptions.

There is nothing much out there that deals with the last three Time Bandits though.

Bearing in mind you can only have that one thought at a time, if you are working on a task and your through stream gets interrupted by the past or future, you immediately drop to less than 50% efficiency.

More insidiously, merely running any internal dialogue, or inner commentary, is enough for you to stop your flow. Try this simple exercise out.

Think about a short sentence you can write say of 10 or so words. Form the sentence in your mind and say it internally. Now write it down and try and think of what you are doing tomorrow at the same time.

You can’t right? By the way, if you can do this, please get in touch!!

We can either think about something or do something. Multi-tasking in a single instant is beyond the current state of human consciousness.

To banish those Time Bandits, we have to develop discipline to stop external interruptions but also to reduce our inner interruptions too. In the same way nobody can breathe for you only one person can write your masterpiece. If you inner dialogue is active, your creative muse cannot get a look in. •

Tom Evans Renaissance Man and Imagineer Tom Evans is the author of four books and counting about creativity. More »

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