My Word of the Week: Juggling

jug·gle – verb \ˈjə-gəl\

: to keep several objects in motion in the air at the same time by repeatedly throwing and catching them
: to do (several things) at the same time
: to make changes to (something) in order to achieve a desired result

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By now, we all know that multitasking is a myth, right? Science has proven that our brains really aren’t capable of focusing on multiple things at once and instead are constantly moving among the activities we are doing, what researchers have called “switchtasking.” And not only is switchtasking bad for productivity, it’s bad for accuracy and creativity and even for relationships.

Why do we keep doing it, then?

Not only do I try to multitask to the same inefficient end that science has proven, I also have another organizational flaw which my husband has lovingly dubbed, “schedule crowding.” If I have a free hour, I think of everything I have to do that would take, oh, say an hour, and then, I decide to do them all. In just the one hour! I’m constantly setting myself up for failure.

Now, fast forward to this week. We are finally moving and doing all the things that go along with that: painting, packing, mowing, weeding, cleaning, unpacking, shopping, fixing. And, I’m working, trying to keep up with client needs and book details and diminishing deadlines. Then, the activities of our normal lives just keep happening: youth group and soccer practice and homework and dinner. (Oh, dinner, she remembers, adding it to the to-do list.)

For chronic multitaskers who also happen to be schedule crowders, weeks like this don’t go well. It’s amazing that I’m still upright and typing.

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But, even with all the juggling going on, God is good and we are thankful. The end is near, amazingly. There is a light at the end of the tunnel—and other cliches of hope that keep me going. Plus, my mom has come to help, which always makes everything better. She also brought some delicious homemade rolls for breakfast. After our two-week grocery-buying moratorium leading up to the move, I’m just happy to have some normal food.

And speaking of multitasking, I have one other thing I want to tell you.

Today is launch day for Michelle DeRusha’s book, 50 Women Every Christian Should Know. I’ll be writing about it on the blog soon—and even offering a giveaway—but don’t miss out on the chance to pick up a copy today. It’s a wonderful book, written in 50 short, easy-to-read chapters, and it will give you a glimpse of religious history you probably won’t get anywhere else.

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WORD COUNT: 383

Photo above by Criss Cross Circus!, via Flickr, used with permission under the Creative Commons License. Definitions of my word of the week are from Merriam-Webster Dictionary Online.

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Charity Singleton Craig

Charity Singleton Craig is a writer, author, and speaker, helping readers grow in their faith and experience true hope in the middle of life’s joys and sorrows. She is the author of My Year in Words: what I learned from choosing one word a week for one year and coauthor of On Being a Writer: 12 Simple Habits for a Writing Life That Lasts.


  • Laura Brown ,

    I do that schedule crowding thing too. I am chronically overly optimistic about how long anything will take to do. Thanks for letting folks like us know we’re not alone.

    That last definition? It sounds a bit like forming new habits. May you achieve the desired result.