Proofreading and Nature?

I’ve submitted my final exam for Caitlyn Pyle’s General Proofreading course!

Actually, I submitted it a few days ago and already got it back. I missed some errors, so I had to correct and resubmit, which I just did. Ahh!

I was afraid that I probably missed something, but I was pretty darn embarrassed by the tiny, idiotic mistakes I missed. It got me thinking a bit more about the book I’m currently reading, though.

A few days ago, I started reading The Nature Fix: Why Nature Makes Us Happier, Healthier, and More Creative by Florence Williams. (Here’s a link to the Goodreads synopsis.) As the title clearly states, this book explores the relationship between people and nature.

Now, I’m only about 15% through this book according to my Kindle, but I’ve already learned some interesting facts. Plus, it’s already making me think and evaluate my lifestyle. Of course, if you’re discussing nature, technology will be brought up at least once, and that’s what I’ve been pondering.

The book mentioned how our ability to focus seems to be a bit impaired by the constant stimuli around us . . . a lot of which is thanks to urban living and technology. When we’re in nature, we’re bombarded with less information; thus, we can focus more and actually come up with better, more creative ideas.

I 100% agree with this notion.

I feel like I’ve become more engrossed in technology throughout the years. (I don’t even consider myself an avid user, though!) And I truly believe that it has affected my ability to work. For example, if I’m grading essays at home, I can’t grade as many before my mind starts wandering and I’m having to reread the same paragraph numerous times. Then, for some asinine reason, I decide that I need to multi-task because grading is taking too long. Thus, I decide to turn on the tv (a little Lifetime or Hallmark, anyone?). Big mistake!

Obviously, I know this is going to make my grading take longer, but I feel like I’m “accomplishing” more with my weekend than just work. In reality, it would be more beneficial to just be able to focus on my work and enjoy my weekend in a way that’s actually enjoyable. (You know, not necessarily by watching idealistic Hallmark movies or crazy people kidnap/stalk/murder others on Lifetime. I do have a soft spot for these movies, though . . . *sigh*)

On the flip side, there are days when the weather is so nice that I absolutely have to be outside even if it means grading outside. I actually finish my work more quickly because–duh!–there are fewer distractions!

Bringing this back to my proofreading adventure, I realized when I missed those aforementioned tiny, idiotic mistakes on the exam that my focus isn’t what it used to be. If I sit here and think about it, I can recall stopping mid-paragraph because I got an email or a text or I wanted to look up lunch boxes. (Don’t judge! I really need a new lunch box!)

How can I expect myself to be successful if I’m constantly letting myself interrupt my own work?

I don’t think I can.

But I’m aware of the issue; therefore, I’ll work on it. This proofreading gig is something that I really want to make work, so I’ll do what needs to be done to break this technological habit I’ve developed. Maybe the remaining 85% of The Nature Fix will give me some guidance.

P.S. The Nature Fix is my introduction to Florence Williams. She seems like she’s got some good stuff out there. Check her out. 

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