My desk is a mess. My desktop is full of icons. My in-box is overflowing. I have a list of people to get in touch with. I have what feels like a hundred decisions to make…. does this sound familiar? I have a horrible case of Multi-tasking-itis…
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I don’t know what has happened… work seemed to creep up on me… like the grey hairs invading my scalp!
It feels like I’m working three or more jobs. Paperwork, administration, design, accounting, writing, marketing, coach and local tech consultant.
While it is great to be ‘busy’ and to have lots of things on the go – I’m not complaining – one thing has become clearly apparent… MULTI-TASKING IS A WASTE OF TIME!!
I know that this is not a breakthrough discovery, however, it is a great reminder – we produce mediocre results when we don’t give things our full attention.
Moreover, we waste time as we move from one task to another… losing our place… avoiding aspects of a ‘boring’ task… procrastinating… wearing down our enthusiasm… brain farting… building up stress etc.
If you want to do great work, avoid multi-tasking and focus on one thing at a time. Finish it and move on to the next thing.
Yes, it means some things aren’t going to get done as fast as some people may want. It means some people aren’t going to get your full attention for a while. But producing a lot of mediocre work, or making a heap of poorly considered decisions just to get through the pile isn’t worth it.
Stop… take a break… stretch… walk around and then come back to finish one task – then give yourself a pat on the back and move on to the next one. You will feel better – I guarantee it!
7 websites (in no particular order) to help you slow down, get focused and prioritise…
- Zen Habits: Leo Babauta writes incredibly well about productivity, health and wellness, and most of all about living the simple life. I’m a fan of the website’s simple design as well – what do you think?
- Steve Pavlina’s Personal Development Blog: This is the number 1 self-development blog on the internet. I’m not a big fan of the design, however, Steve writes eloquently about entrepreneurship, especially working online, and the tools and attitudes that make it work.
- Simpleology: The Simple Science of Getting What You Want by Mark Joyner. Over 600 thousand people have simplified their complicated lives using this system. It will help you focus, prioritise and produce results.
- Becoming Minimalist: Joshua Becker’s blog follows his family’s journey to become minimalist. It is written to inspire you to live with less. And find more life because of it.
- Think Simple Now: Creativity, clarity, and happiness — what could be better? Think Simple Now covers the tools and techniques to get there.
- The Slow Movement: Slow down! What’s the big rush, anyway? Find peace, happiness, and even greater productivity (in the things that matter to you most) with these tips on living life in the slow lane — or off the road entirely.
- Simple Productivity Blog: LJ Earnest is a blogger constantly on the lookout for new ways to be productive and simplify life. The premise behind the blog – Simpler = More Productivity = More Time For YOUR Stuff.