Why Single-Tasking is Good for Your Soul: Your Daily Good

Originally published Wednesday, 22 October 2014.

It's a new week and maybe you're thinking like me. 

I don't know what to do. There's so many things I want to to do, but which one is the right thing to commit to?

Time is precious and there's hardly not enough of it. So, we often freeze up. We always hear time is money, so we're afraid to spend our time... on ourselves.

Soul care.  Soul care is allowing ourselves to be loved by God.

And one of the hardest things for me is taking the risk to choose -- what's good for my soul.

The nearness of God is my daily good.

So, how can I bring God into my world, to bring Him close to me?

I've found one movement in soul care that has been my daily good:  single-tasking.

Single-tasking is a source of water for my soul, to keep my soul fresh and hydrated.

I've found when I multi-task -- I'm really afraid to choose.


Your Soul Quotient

I squander the time that God wanted me to enjoy -- that He gave me as a gift to enjoy -- by splitting my heart and my head in all different directions. And I miss out on touching that spiritual whitespace where my soul can just be replenished and rest.

I read a very convicting article on called How and (Why) to Stop Multi-tasking by Peter Bergman in the Harvard Business Review:

 A study showed that people distracted by incoming email and phone calls saw a 10-point fall in their IQs. What’s the impact of a 10-point drop? The same as losing a night of sleep. More than twice the effect of smoking marijuana.

Doing several things at once is a trick we play on ourselves, thinking we’re getting more done. In reality, our productivity goes down by as much as 40%. We don’t actually multitask. We switch-task, rapidly shifting from one thing to another, interrupting ourselves unproductively, and losing time in the process.

You might think you’re different, that you’ve done it so much you’ve become good at it. Practice makes perfect and all that.

But you’d be wrong. Research shows that heavy multitaskers are less competent at doing several things at once than light multitaskers. In other words, in contrast to almost everything else in your life, the more you multitask, the worse you are at it. Practice, in this case, works against you.

It made me think -- forget about IQ -- what about my SQ -- Soul Quotient?

Our Soul Quotient -- how much we experience the nearness of God -- the presence of God -- is what's at stake when we are afraid to commit our time to what's restful and soul-feeding.

When we single-task, we are choosing to make room to our souls and care for our emotional needs.

Our Soul Quotient allows us to feel, to love, to be present with ourselves, with God -- and with those who need our Soul Quotient the most: our spouses, children, friends and those we want to be fully present and love with kindness, patience, joy and gentleness.

We can't do that if our heart is split up with self-doubt and soul-neglect trying to be somebody, doing things that we feel others can point to and say, "Look, she did something."

In contract, as people of faith, we want to be someone who others can say of, "I feel loved when I'm with you.  I feel accepted.  I feel heard and seen."

And we can only become people like this, by choosing the life of the beloved.

A New Heart

When we single-task, we become single-hearted. We experience God's love by choosing God's nearness -- by resting in the discovery of who God made us. Jesus told us  ---

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind." matt23:37

We often think about loving God with our mind -- study, analyzing, understanding, thinking about God's love and God's will and God's truths.

But, the soul is where we experience God's love, God's will and God's truths.

Since I've had my panic attacks and am now recovered, I have a new heart. It's awakened, but I can't do life like I did before.

My heart can't multi-task. My new heart does not allow me to be torn.

If I try to multi-task, I experience a lot of anxiety. This is hard, because I'm used to knowing I'm accomplishing. But, I like this new me more: awakened and alive.

Your Daily Good

I want to keep singing my new song. So, I'm learning to choose my daily good. To be the beloved.

Don't put yourself last on your list. Do the opposite.

When you feel torn and undecided about how to spend your time, choose what is good for your soul.

Be bold. Choose your daily good.

Commit yourself fully to be present - enjoy pursuing the nearness of God - by spending time in ways that nurture who God made you --  even though you have no idea where any of it will lead.

Choose the joy of rest and don't turn from it.

Make room for God by making room for you.

Say yes to rest.



Do you find it hard to single-task?  

I hope you enjoy this week's {Yes to Rest} #spiritualwhitespace prompts below. 

Pull up a chair. Share  a comment below.  

This is a restful place to sing our song.


 For inspiration on creating more room in your life to breathe, order a copy of Finding Spiritual Whitespace: Awakening Your Soul To Rest, which has garnered starred review praise from Publisher’s Weekly.  This memoir-driven guidebook for rest is for anyone longing to create space to draw closer to God. Learn how a life-long dream unexpectedly launched Bonnie into painful childhood memoires to discover a better story of rest. Visit TheBonnieGray.com to learn more. 

"Whitespace is soul grace. Bonnie Gray ushers weary women into the real possibility." - Ann Voskamp, NY Times bestsellng author of One Thousand Gifts

"If you want to hear Jesus speak more tenderly to your soul than ever befrore, this is the book for you." - Lysa TerKeurst, NY Times bestselling author of Unglued

"We live in a culture that brags and boasts about being busy. Into that reality steps Bonnie with a new idea.
Whitespace is an important concept and Bonnie has captured it perfectly. 
-Jon Acuff,NY  Times bestselling author of Start!

Bonnie Gray is the soulful writer behind FaithBarista.com serving up shots of faith for the daily grind.  She is a contributor at DaySpring (in)courage, her work spotighted by Christianity Today, Relevant, Catalyst Leadership and Publisher's Weekly named Bonnie of the Top 6 notable new religion authors. After graduating from UCLA, Bonnie served as a missionary, ministry entrepreneur, and Silicon Valley high-tech professional. She lives in Northern California with her husband, Eric, and their two sons.

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{photo credit: faithbarista reader @michelleviscuse on instagram from the #spiritualwhitespace community.}