Can you eat and talk at the same time? No right, in a similar way doing multiple things at the same time is impossible.
According to a study, it is said that doing multitasking either slows down the ongoing tasks or you’re going to start making mistakes.
I watch Tv and at the same time eat food which messes up everything. The plan of my day messes up. I cater 30 minutes for food according to my To-Do list which usually goes up to 1 hour. Doing two things at the same time is impossible and takes a lot of time than expected.
Not only this there are many cases where I tried doing multitasking but it never worked.
- Watching mobile and tv at the same time: This will be common in every home. People on the Tv and watch mobile and when someone asks they say they are doing multitasking. But if you would have observed yourself during that period you would have been completely into your mobile and ignored tv or vise versa.
- Checking your phone and email while doing other tasks: This is not called multitasking this is called distracting yourself from the important work.
Multitasking has a severe effect on the brain:
1)Impacts your short-term memory: While multitasking you have to focus on more than one task which can severely affect the brain.
2)Depression, anxiety, and decrease productivity:
Trying to multitask produces changes in the brain that can cause depression, anxiety and decrease productivity. In short, multitasking is bad for your overall mental health.
3)Causes more mistakes :
Multiple studies have found that multitasking causes people a long time to do tasks and can even have the same negative impact as losing a night’s sleep.
Some researchers suggest that multitasking can reduce productivity by as much as 40%.
Well, there is a very famous saying “When you talk to someone and do one more thing same time, you indirectly are giving that person less importance”.
When you give some time to think about the quote, it is so true right.
Let me share with you what I think. I have read a lot of books on this concept and there is one thing that many people are not aware of.
Do you know there is nothing called multi-tasking?
You either have “Switch task” or “Background Task”.
So let me just brief you on the same.
Switch tasking as we all know is when our attention is on different tasks that are not directly related to the same outcome. Our brain does not do so well switch tasking and there is a real cost to it. We always enjoy work in a state of flow because it no longer feels like work. This practice slows down a lot and kills productivity also.
Background tasking is when something automatically occurs in the background of an activity. This gets the maximum productivity. Let me give you an example of starting a load of laundry while you answer Email. Since the laundry doesn’t require your attention and is happening in the background.
In the present generation even though we try to do single-task but some situations force us to do multitasking. Let us see few situations where we don’t realize and do multitasking:
1)Reading emails and On a call with Colleague.
2)Listening to the training and taking descriptive notes.
You can try reducing this at your workplace by following these few tips.
1)Delegation of work
2)Use a machine for background tasking
Even though we can’t completely erode multitasking we can reduce this by putting some limitations:
1)Make a to-do list:
Create a daily schedule by putting a non-negotiable time for your work.
It can be as short as 20 min to as long as 70 min. By doing so you are putting a finish line to your task.
“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligence, planning, and focused effort.”Paul J. Meyer
2)Schedule multiple breaks
Avoiding multitasking doesn’t mean avoiding breaks.
You need to have a break in the middle so that you can refresh yourself and refocus.
It’s very refreshing to go away and take a break, to clear your head, and just get into something elseFrancois Nars
3)Make it clear that you won’t be distracted
No matter what make sure to stay focused on your work.
Keep yourself away from mobiles until you finish your deadline.
4)Designing a peaceful environment
Creating a peaceful work environment is beneficial to stay away from all the distractions beside you.
5)Block distracting websites-
While you are seriously focusing on your work there may be notifications popping out from websites that may be distracting. Therefore before starting work make sure to block all the notifications from the distracting websites which can increase your work time.
The advantage of single tasking over multiple tasking:
1)Helps you focus more
2)Takes less time
4)Makes you more creative
5)Be more productive
As we’ve seen multitasking affects our brain and kills our productivity without even knowing it. If still not convinced let’s try a small activity.
Take a notebook and pen and write this:
- S W I T C H T A S K I N G I S A T H I E F
- 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
For the first time write the complete line at once. Like the first line “Switch tasking is a thief” and the second line i.e. numbers from 1 to 20
Again repeat the same but now first write one letter on top and corresponding to one letter in the bottom. For example, write the “S” on the top line and then “1” on the bottom, “W” and “2”, “I” and “3” etc.
Check the time for both the activity and you will understand how multitasking just kills our time and decreases our productivity.
Therefore let’s try to minimize multitasking as much as we can to live a happier life.
Let me know in the comments the time you spent on both the activities. Also, share your ideas and views and pass them to all the multitaskers who think they are doing something great.