The Fallacy of Multi-Tasking

By Maria Pesin | Productivity

 

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As a business owner and single mom life is pretty complicated. So in order to get as much accomplished as possible in the shortest amount of time I bought into the whole concept of multitasking. I proudly tackled projects and chores while taking calls, answering emails, keeping an open door policy for staff, and spending time with my children. Generally multitasking to the Nth degree. But am I really getting more done or in fact less?

 Gloria Mark PHD and Professor in UCI’s Department of information was quoted saying “we found (in her research) about 82 percent of all interrupted work is resumed on the same day. But here’s the bad news — it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to get back to the task

Would I be better off letting calls go to voice mail, emails not being read and closing the door in order to have uninterrupted time to concentrate on the job before me?

According to John J. Medina Author of Brain Rules and a developmental molecular biologist. “Multitasking, when it comes to paying attention, is a myth. The brain naturally focuses on concepts sequentially, one at a time. At first that might sound confusing; at one level the brain does multitask. You can walk and talk at the same time. Your brain controls your heartbeat while you read a book. A pianist can play a piece with left hand and right hand simultaneously. Surely this is multitasking. But I am talking about the brain’s ability to pay attention… To put it bluntly, research shows that we can’t multitask. We are biologically incapable of processing attention-rich inputs simultaneously”.

Probably doing laundry when you are with your children is a good way to multitask as laundry is a low concentration activity and you can spend quality time with your son or daughter talking. They don’t need to be entertained all the time. What I do now is block out time and actually use my phone timer to where I allow uninterrupted time to focus on a particular job at a time. It is working for me and I accomplish more in a shorter time.  Think about working smart rather than working hard.

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About the Author

Maria Pesin knows fashion, especially the business side of the fashion industry. Do you know how Manolo Blahnik got his start in the industry? How he leveraged a paltry 3 grand into one of the world’s most famous luxury brands? While she doesn’t take credit for Manolo’s success, Maria has walked a similar path on numerous occasions. The world of fashion is not silicon valley, and it has nothing to do with Madison Avenue marketing. In this industry there is ALWAYS room for something new and exciting, but you have to have your ducks in a row. If that’s what you need, believe me, Maria is the General Patton of fashion ducks!

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