I have written before about how multi-tasking in general it does not work. That’s when I came across this definition of how I tend to naturally work, even if I don’t always succeed: “single-tasking or mono-tasking”.
Definition of single-tasking or monotasking
Doing one thing at a time to help you get more done because of how efficient this system is.
Single-tasking does not mean that you have to spend the whole day on one task. Doing that is often counter productive. Single-tasking means that you give the task at hand 100 percent of your attention.
There are times when multi-tasking is the way to go as I wrote in my article “does multi-tasking really save time?”
Examples of where multi-tasking works:
- Walking and chewing gum
- Folding laundry while talking on the phone
- A clown riding a unicycle while juggling brightly colored balls
But in more complex situations multi-tasking is more of a hinderance than beneficial.
We live in a multi-tasking world and tend to get bored of doing one task for a long time. This is why I recommend that you schedule all your tasks. By that I mean, that you set a start and end time for each task. Once the time is up you can decide if you want to move on to the next scheduled task even though you are not quite done with the current one or finish it. That usually means to move on to the next task to give you a change of “scenery” and then when one tasks takes less time than scheduled during the day, you go back and finish the task.
How to keep are narrow focus?
- Stop all distractions is the key.
- Turn off your phone and let it go to voicemail.
- Log off your social media sites.
- Stop your email so that you don’t hear the notification sound.
- If necessary put a ‘do not disturb’ sign on your door.
Scheduling your day also means to schedule your breaks, your phone time, email time and social media time in addition to the tasks you just have to do. Without a system it is hard to stay disciplined.
Links to articles and books about single-tasking to help you stay focused:
- A friend just introduced to me to this new book by Devora Zack ► Singletasking: Get More Done-One Thing at a Time
- Forbes ► Why Single-Tasking Makes You Smarter
- Entrepreneur ► Forget Multitasking. Real Productivity Comes From Singletasking
- Lifehacker ► A Case for Singletasking: The One-Task-At-a-Time Method
- Iris Reading ► Single-Tasking (PDF)
- Forbes ► Optimize Your Performance By Singletasking
- Computerworld ► Single tasking
- Buffer ► Single-task Your Way Through Your Day: How Focusing Unlocks Extreme Productivity
Do you need to help setting up a schedule?
Let’s get started, I would love to assist you.
Leave a comment below and tell me if you find single-tasking more productive.