MarketingIcons_CoverI have always considered myself to be a decent multitasker. In fact, I have worked pretty hard to develop my multitasking skills to increase productivity throughout the day. I never missed a beat during classes in school while I simultaneously took lecture notes and did that night’s homework. With the amount of devices, social networks and apps out there to play with, you pretty much had to learn to multitask if you wanted to play games and take good lecture notes at the same time.

The other day I was going about my super multitasky ways when I stumbled across an article with the words “single tasking to increase productivity” in the title. I was immediately intrigued by this foreign idea so I read on.

Turns out:

  • Multitasking can actually decrease your productivity if you are not careful.
  • Trying to do to many things at once can add to stress and anxiety to your life.

Since then, I have been seeing the words “Single Tasking” pop up everywhere. The more research I did about the poor effect multitasking has on your productivity levels, the more I realized it’s time to try and develop some new habits. I also came across something called the Pomodoro Technique which involves using a timer and breaking your work intervals into 25 minutes separated by short breaks. I’m going to be honest, this actually really works if you can stay true to the task at hand for 25 minutes. I found this nifty little app called Pomotodo which combines the Pomodoro technique with the GTD (Getting Things Done) Method in a simple and helpful way. I highly recommend giving this web app a try if you like to make task lists for yourself and you have a short to average attention span.

Of course, everyone is different and everyone has their own methods they use to accomplish tasks. But I honestly did not realize how much of a time suck multitasking can be for me during the day. It’s sort of an addiction, and I’m sort of over it. If you are intrigued by the idea of single-tasking you can always try what people are calling Tabless Thursdays. Believe it or not, people actually go through their day with only a single browser window open. Yes, you did read that correctly. I have tried it, and it’s not easy, but it does keep you focused on the task at hand as well as discourage distracting tab hopping.

Think of it this way, instead of putting 100 percent of your brainpower into accomplishing a single task it gets divided by how many tasks you are trying to accomplish at once.