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  • in reply to: Being Interrupted #198645

    Yes, indeed–me, too! While it bothers me less if a person interrupts a verbal conversation, (and I don’t like it), what bothers me more happens fairly often at home when I’m trying to get something routine (and boring) done. It takes me a lot of time and effort to just get “going” with routines of housekeeping, for example. I might do a little work (an hour, split up into smaller segments, with a break or two in the midst), and then I notice the clock and it’s early afternoon. I probably haven’t eaten a meal yet since arising around 8 or 9 AM (because I’m a very late “night owl”), so, I pause to get something to eat.

    After eating–and sitting down, and probably also turning on the TV–to give myself something to watch or think about while I “sit and eat”, I am probably going to stretch that sit-down into 30 minutes to an hour. That’s okay; I don’t stress about that. I can get up when the program is over and start back with the (boring, routine) tasks I had before.

    HOWEVER, if my husband happens to come home from his office at any time earlier than, say, 4:30 or 5:00, it totally throws me off. I can’t get back to what I was doing before, even after he changes clothes and leaves for the gym or a long outdoor walk–his “afternoon thing” to do, every day, as soon as he can get free for it. For my husband, his routines and “schedule” make perfect sense. For me, it FEELS like being verbally interrupted in the middle of a conversation. I feel “jolted” or something. Whatever I happen to be doing, when Husband walks in the door, I stop. I STOP, because I simply cannot concentrate at ALL on “doing the work” when someone is moving into, out of, or around the space I’m working in. It doesn’t help to move to some other room–that feels like being shut up into a closet or something. I have to stop, and (sometimes), I can’t get BACK to the thing (mentally focused on it) even after he leaves.

    The same thing is true if *I* have to leave the house in the middle of the day for an appointment or meeting or any “time sensitive” activitiy. I feel I’ve switched gears and can’t get back to the “working flow” mode when I return.

    When this “switch gears” thing happens, I simply give up with the previous task and effort–until late at night. Then, my focus returns. I tend to stay up REALLY late, because that seems to be one time when I can concentrate on some of the boring “need to be done” activities I normally can’t do during the daytime. There are no interruptions, unless I get unavoidably very tired and have to go to bed.

    The next day, it starts all over again! It’s not being interrupted in conversations, but feeling interrupted while trying to stay on-task that irritates and frustrates me the most!

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