Since you're certainly not going to change the diet that has brought you to a state of physical perfection, you will have to find other ways to work around your inability to work. Fortunately, professor Killeen has some ideas on this subject, too. "One of the first keys," he says, "is to recognize that you have a finite attentional window."
No surprise there. Your supervisor has been pointing this out to you since your first day on the job.
Given your finite -- or as scientists would put it, "itsy-bitsy" -- attentional window, you must "structure your workflow to be congruent with that capacity." In other words, focus your peak workload on the time when you are best able to concentrate on a project. For me, it would be the time right after my lunch and right before my afternoon nap. Really, you'd be surprised what a dynamo I am in those 12 seconds, which is a good thing, since the other 28,788 seconds in the day are pretty much a waste.
And you'll be very happy to learn that "to be our most productive and most creative we need to unplug throughout our workdays." I know you like to unplug -- to detach yourself from the workday grid and surrender yourself to the arms of Morpheus. But this is not quite what the researchers have in mind. "As banker-neurologist John Coates notes in 'The Hour Between Dog and Wolf,'" napping isn't the only option: "Other research has shown that switching tasks can defray your mental fatigue."
I like this idea. Next time you find your mind wandering while trying to resolve one gigantic, fouled-up screw-up, turn your attention to a different gigantic, fouled-up screw-up. Fortunately, at your company, there's never a shortage.
Another way to cope with workplace ADHD, according to the scientists, is to "step away and start thinking in nontraditional ways. What if the project was a chipmunk?"
How did they know?
Bob Goldman was an advertising executive at a Fortune 500 company, but he finally wised up and opened Bob Goldman Financial Planning in Sausalito, California. He offers a virtual shoulder to cry on at email@example.com. To find out more about Bob Goldman, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate web page at www.creators.com.
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