How to stop multitasking and stay focused
What exactly is multitasking?
I was always very proud to call myself a multi-tasker, I was at least 45 before I realise that this was not a good trait to have. I wonder sometimes if as you get older you have more things on your mind and your attention is spread far too sparsely.
Jumping between one project and another not only slows down the time it takes to do each task but also significantly reduces the quality of the work that you produce.
Multitasking actually slows you down and stops you from moving the business forward!
So how do we make a change when multitasking habits can be so ingrained in our life. I’m going to give you five suggestions, tips that I have learned from others and found that work for me.
1. Be tactical with your time
Arrange face to face meetings all on one day. Holding one meeting, on one day can disrupt the whole of the rest of your day! Try and book meetings in advance on one or two days per week so that when you leave your office you have back-to-back meetings planned throughout the day. This means that your follow-up work can be done over the next few days whilst you are in one place. Personally, I found that leaving Monday and Friday's free really help me to get through a greater volume of work. Monday is my planning day I’ve often put something together on Sunday night, I know roughly what I’m going to be doing and I put my plans into action on Monday. Friday is my podcast day, launching the weekly podcast, finishing off any outstanding client work and if I get finished early I take the afternoon off and go for a walk
2. Batch your work
Batch your work leaving at least 2 to 3 hours for each set, this could be for a particular project or an individual client or a course you’re planning or piece of learning you want to catch up with. Devote your full attention to this making sure you turn off all distractions, put your phone on silent and turn it screen side down, turn off your email notifications and solely concentrate on the task you set yourself.
3. Set daily goals
First thing every morning set yourself a list of three things you want to achieve during the day and put these in order of priority. Even if it’s something that you’ve been procrastinating about or putting off, put the most important things that are driving your business forward to the top. Tackle it don’t put it off even if your top priority takes you all day, plough through, make a commitment and finish it.
Sometimes the things you’ve been procrastinating about aren’t as difficult as you think when you actually put time and energy into it and commit to finishing it.
4. Get savvy with your social
If anything on your list involves social media only open the platform when you are ready to do the work! You may be planning to make a Facebook ads campaign, a new post or a video. Remember this is a purposeful and planned piece of work, be very careful that you don’t end up mindlessly scrolling - OPEN do the job CLOSE the platform down
5. Take a break
Just like focusing on your work, plan the break, maybe a walk or just getting outside for a short while, take the time and refocus before you begin your new piece of work. I know this may sound clinical but it is remarkable how much work you can get done and produce really good quality outcomes when you start multitasking and you start focusing.
It feels so much better to have achieved something during the day, than ending the day feeling that you’ve not done anything and where’s the time gone.
When you work in this way it also means you can take more time off!
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