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Napoleon could focus on one thing at a time, despite a million things going on. Even in the middle of a battle, he was known to dictate letters back to home.

He could open and close threads of thought at will-sometimes dictating multiple letters to multiple aide-de-camps at the same time, turning to one to continue a thought, stopping and going to the next one, then returning to the original.

“Different subjects and different affairs are arranged in my head as in a cupboard,” he once said. “When I wish to interrupt one train of thought, I shut that drawer and open another. Do I wish to sleep? I simply close all the drawers, and there I am – asleep.”