In praise of single-tasking

“Multitasking” used to be thought of as the key to getting everything done. But if trying to do 10 things at once leaves you feeling frazzled and defeated, take heart. New research shows that multitasking really doesn’t help us be more productive. It ends up just stressing us out.

Welcome to single-tasking! Yep, it turns out that we’re more efficient when we actually focus on one thing at a time. If you’re out of practice, then here are a few tips to help you get focused:

Prioritize. Yes, we all have plenty of to-dos on our list(s). But keep making those lists anyway. Only pull out the top one or two most critical tasks and focus on doing them first. That way, you won’t get sidetracked by less important projects.

Avoid distractions. One of the hardest things about multitasking is feeling like you’re being pulled in many different directions. With single-tasking, aim to focus intently and remove as many distractions as possible. Turn off the ringer on your phone, log out of your email – whatever will allow you to think more clearly (and feel less stressed).

Take a break. Facing a tough task? Step away for a few minutes every now and then to boost your brainpower. You’ll return with a clear head and a calmer attitude.

 

Here’s to taking care of business – one task at a time,

The Healthy Lifestyles Coaching Team