As I sit here totally consumed – reading post after post on all of my favorite personal finance blogs, I suddenly snap out of it. “What the hell are you doing?” I think to myself. I have no kids tonight and at least ten things I have to get done.
“Screwing two things up at the same time isn’t multitasking.”
I started the night out on my laptop. I had planned to write a couple of articles for this site, one for my other site, and finish up my last bit of laundry. I had worked all day and now had some spare time to get things done.
I decided to multitask…………………
When You Multitask You Lose Focus
Multitasking gets way too much credit. When you multitask you never get anything done to the best of your ability. Take me for example. I started writing and 100 words deep I decided that I needed to check my email. After checking my email I needed to check Twitter. I had a new follower on Twitter so I had to check out her blog. (Which was great by the way.) Her blog led me to another, which in turn led me to another. A vicious cycle had now started and 1 hour flew out the window.
Multitasking Prevents You from Doing Anything to the Best of Your Ability
When you try to do more than one thing at a time, nothing gets done to the best of your ability. You cannot give a project your full attention when your head is cluttered with other tasks. Had I remained focused on the chores at hand, I would be sitting here with clean laundry and three blog posts. Given, laundry requires zero effort. But had I put my focus on writing excellent articles instead of reading excellent articles I would have felt accomplished and less stressed.
The Few Times When Multitasking is Productive
The few times that multitasking is actually beneficial is when you are doing something that require little to no effort. For instance, walking on a treadmill and reading a book, folding laundry while watching TV, or opening mail while eating a sandwich. If it takes much more effort than that, then you are losing time and productivity.
Can You Stop?
We live in a fast paced society. We try to do so much that we do not even realize that we are multitasking anymore. If we stopped trying to do everything at once and instead put the majority of our focus on the important things – one by one, our effort would produce phenomenal results.