I know there is a saying that goes something like this: "Once is a mistake, twice is stupidity." So I’m a bit embarrassed to admit this.
Twice this week, not once, I went to an ATM to take out money—only I forgot to get the money. I walked away believing I had completed a task only to discover later when I opened my wallet that it was bare. Somebody walking past the ATM must have thought it was their lucky day.
The first time I did it, I forgave myself. The second time, I beat myself up. I wondered if I have some early onset neurological disorder. I got angry at myself; I was disappointed and embarrassed. I may sometimes find the TV remote control challenging (much to the eye roll of my kids when I try to use voice activation), but I do know how an ATM machine works.
After thinking about my odd behavior, I realized I’m forever in a state of multitasking, withdrawing money while working out if we need milk, do I have time to walk the dog before work, did I wash that shirt, and what exactly did that email mean? I’ve stopped single tasking. I’ve stopped being present, being mindful of the moment.
Being mindful doesn’t need to be reserved for sunsets, strolls through rose gardens and, I don’t know, chanting on a rock. Being mindful and present helps you get through the mundane stuff too—without messing it up.
It was the kick in the pants I needed. It’s time to change a few bad habits I’ve fallen into. I’m lucky it was money that gave me a shove rather than something where the consequences were much more permanent and traumatic.
I’m trying to make myself stay on task and then move to the next one. I’ve downloaded a mindfulness app (I swear I'll use it soon).
When I’m talking to my kids or friends, I’m trying to really listen to what they are saying—in that moment. Sounds pretty obvious, but I need to refresh my listening skills.
I know so many people do this but I’m also joining the digital detox club—as a casual member. When I get home from work, I’m leaving my phone in a different room from whatever room I am in—it distracts me.
My husband was lovely when I told him about my ATM walk aways. I did lay on my fear of having some medical issue pretty thick though, to deflect from money literally being lost.
"You don’t need to see a doctor," he said.
"Just slow down and take the money out, and next time, give me a call and I’ll talk you through how an ATM works."
May you all know how to use an ATM properly, and if you don’t, give me a call and I’ll talk you through it too.
This post originally appeared on Mamamia, Spring.St's Australian sister site. You can read it here.
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