When was the last time you enjoyed a cup of coffee? Do you ever remember having coffee without reading the paper or scrolling through your social media? Multitasking is something that people do on the daily yet do not know its cost.
A study entitled The Cost of Interrupted Work: More Speed and Stress concluded that an individual task-switches about 400 times a day which takes a toll on their focus. It also showed that when people are constantly interrupted while doing something, they tend to do things faster to compensate with the time they lost. But working faster costs higher workload, more stress, higher frustration, more time pressure, and effort.
No One’s Really a Multitasker
One important question is asked to candidates during a job interview: Are you a multitasker?
Companies look for people who are able to juggle tasks, believing that this would allow employees to perform in full productivity. Multitasking isn’t really for everyone. In fact, scientists say that the human brain does not really multitask but switches its attention from one task to another. The idea of humans multitasking came from the advancement of technology where you can tend to lots of tabs all at once.
A multitasking individual is not really a multitasker but a quick task-switcher.
Monotasking is the Real Multitasking
Task-switching can be draining. While dealing with a lot of stuff, you need to keep track of each task every time. Next thing you know you haven’t really done enough to finish major tasks.
Monotasking is a productivity hack that encourages you to focus on one thing at a time. This means opening just one browser window and finishing that one article before you watch related videos or writing that report without music playing in the background. This habit allows people to put their total focus on tasks and do excellently that would lessen cramming behavior and low quality outputs.
You Can Do More than Just Getting Things Done
Although it is dubbed as a great productivity hack, monotasking is also a way to keep your peace of mind. Because your brain does not give too much effort keeping up with a number of tasks all at once you can take things slow and savor moments as mundane as just drinking coffee or listening to new music.
It’s similar to the principle of stopping to smell the flowers. You can manage your time by scheduling so that you can focus on one thing and do not have to miss major tasks.
You can also build stronger and better relationships with the people you love. Multitasking involves a lot of technology usage. Having dinner with family is now incomplete without taking photos and videos of your food and checking Twitter from time to time. Focusing on your time with your loved ones will allow you to really be present and relate to them in a deeper level. These relationships also build up your confidence and communication skills.
Monotasking is beyond getting things done. It is a way to improve the quality of life. The next time you notice yourself opening a whole bunch of browser tabs or switching from one app to another, keep away from your gadget and rethink how you can go about your tasks. Awareness is always key in changing habits that do not really help you live your life to the fullest.