Why Not To Multitask

Multitasking is a skill listed on many CVs and quite often a sought-after one on many job specs. When done well it’s a great skill to possess, but when done badly it can have detrimental consequences – imposing unnecessary stress on the individual.

So, how successful are you at multitasking?

Are you giving your job, your family, your friends or the tasks you undertake the attention they deserve? Or, are you putting a bit of your energy into a lot and not really focusing on anything?

The fact is that many of us are spreading ourselves way too thin. How do we avoid this? How do we get through our day and everything that’s packed into it, without attempting to do ten things at once?

The first and most important step is realising that at any one point in time, we have in fact only one task to complete. Concentrate on completing that one task in front of you. Stop trying to rush ahead to what you have to do tomorrow or next week. That won’t get it done any quicker – believe me I’ve tried!

So, how do we do it?

  1. Make a to-do list – include what has to be done today, and today only. If it can wait until tomorrow or next week, let it wait.

  2. Reduce the to-do list – stop putting your time and energy into the unnecessary, unproductive or unprofitable tasks.

  3. Prioritise the to-do list – first, the urgent and important tasks, then the urgent but less important. Urgent meaning, it has to be done today. Nothing else makes the to-do list. It’s either for another day, or not at all.

  4. Distractions happen – you’ll get interrupted or pulled away. Accept that that’s ok. Stuff happens and now you have a new task. But only if it’s urgent and/or important.

  5. Schedule your meetings and stick to the schedule.

  6. Schedule time out and stick to the schedule – efficient machines don’t run on empty fuel tanks.

  7. Be strict and selfish with your time – don’t allow others to use it as and when they wish.

  8. Stop being a people pleaser – trying to please others or worrying about not offending is one of the main reasons why our day can slip away from us. Put your attention on what you need to achieve for yourself first, and then serve others

Posted in Blog.