I feel like single-tasking has to become a thing.
For the longest time, people have prided themselves on being multitaskers.
Women even wear this badge as a badge of honour that they’re able to do more than one thing at a time.
But just because you can do more than one thing at a time, does that mean that’s a great way to work and get stuff done?
It depends on the situation but most often than not, I feel like the would be no.
If you’re doing any creative work or work that demands thoughtfulness, you definitely shouldn’t be multi-tasking.
I’d go as far as to say that regardless of the kind of work you’re doing, you should never multi-task.
You might feel like you’re being efficient but you’re not. You expend a lot of energy just getting your brain and muscle-memory to re-adjust to a new task — energy that could easily be spent on the current task at hand. Not to mention also the adjustment time it requires to refocus on something new.
From my experience, multi-tasking is bad for productivity in the same way that checking email and scrolling Facebook is bad for productivity when you’re trying to get stuff done.
What should you do instead?
I use the pomodoro technique a lot.
Whenever I sit down to a piece of work that is mentally taxing, I straightaway open Pomodone and work in bursts of 25 or 55 minutes.
Everything goes off, phones go on Do Not Disturb mode (thank God for that feature), emails are on pause and I’m completely immersed in what I’m creating — at least I try to be.
I don’t always do this perfectly but it’s less about being perfect and more about getting into the habit of focusing on one thing at a time and going hard at it till it’s done.
Read this book for some added insight.
A lot of people might disagree with this approach, but from my experience this has to be the approach that I’ve found to be most effective.