Multitasking is a Myth. If you think you can multitask well, think again.
Doing more than one task at a time, especially complex tasks, actually reduces productivity, efficiency and performance. In fact, research shows that switching from task to task can cost you up to 40% efficiency.
You are better off focusing on one thing at a time and doing that one thing well.
If you think you’re good at doing several things at once — reading and listening to music, driving and talking on the phone, texting while sitting in a meeting — think again.
Recent neuroscience research reveals that the brain doesn’t really do tasks simultaneously, as we thought — or hoped — it might. In fact, we just switch tasks quickly. Each time we move from hearing music to reading to talking to texting, there is a stop/ start process that goes on in the brain. And that start/stop/start process is rough on us: rather than saving time, it costs time (even very small micro seconds), it’s less efficient, we make more mistakes, and over time it can be energy sapping.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed and you think becoming a better multitasker is the answer, guess again. And join me for my free training on 10 Keys to Help Working Women Regain Control (without guilt). It will give you some much better tools for managing your work–and your life.
In the meantime, try working on just one thing and giving yourself sufficient time to complete it. Then, take a quick break, breathe, stretch, move around, drink some water and focus on the next thing. If you do this throughout the day, you will actually accomplish more. I was quite surprised at the difference this made for me.
Besides, when you actually pay attention in the meeting, instead of texting and answering emails, you may be surprised at what you learn that will be helpful to your overall career goals!
I’d love to see your comments. Please share your experience with multitasking.
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