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source: Justin Grandfield

“Just One More Thing” Syndrome

"Just One More Thing" Syndrome at
source: Justin Grandfield
Do you often find yourself trying to do just one more thing? Do you leave your family waiting in the car while you do one more thing before leaving the house? Do you get distracted from a task by one more thing you want to take care of really quick? Or do you consistently put off bedtime because you just want to get one more thing done before turning in for the night?

If so, you might suffer from “just one more thing” syndrome.

Believe me, it’s a syndrome I know well. I can rarely leave the house without getting distracted by one or two (or three or four…) things that I can do really quick before we leave. I almost never finish the main task at hand without stopping to do one or two (or three or four…) things along the way.

We’ve talked about the dangers of multitasking before and how trying to divide your attention between mental tasks can make you less productive, and although I’m mostly referring to physical tasks today, I’m not sure this is really that different. But I also hesitate to leave a task for later that I know I could take care of really quick on my way to do something else.

There are benefits to this syndrome, such as the fact that we rarely come home to complete chaos and disorder since I clean up all of those little piles around the house on my way out the door. It also means I don’t have to set aside a large chunk of time to straighten or clean because I’ve taken care of all the little things as I go about the rest of my day.

On the other hand, I’m sure it’s frustrating for my husband and my children when they’re waiting for me to do something and I keep saying, “Okay, one second. Let me just take care of this first.” And that’s the part that concerns me. I mean, productivity and having a neat house is good. It’s great to want our homes to be a haven for our families, but if we’re frustrating them in our efforts to achieve it, are we really meeting that goal? Or are we just being selfish in our pursuit of order and perfection?

I don’t really have an answer to that question. I think there are elements of both in my own life, and I hope that by being conscious of the struggle and aware of its effects on my family, I’ll be able to find the right balance!

Do you suffer from “just one more thing” syndrome? Do you think it frustrates your family?