Do you find yourself doing more than one thing at a time?
I recently heard one of my favorite people, Katie Hendricks say "I can do what I am doing, because it's all I'm doing". That struck me in that moment, she was coaching one of my peers and what she meant in that moment was that she was fully present and paying attention to what was going on in that moment, nothing else was happening in her mind. She was able to be the most effective because she was literally only processing one thing at a time.
Since that moment I have been thinking about the concept of multitasking, and evaluating how often I do more than one thing at at time.
The outcome... I am a multitasking junkie! I simultaneously do many things at one time, almost constantly.
I did some research and I want to share with you what I found on the subject, does multitasking work, or are you hurting yourself by playing along with this addictive way of conducting your time?
The answer, NO! Multitasking is wildly ineffective. My favorite article that I found on the subject was one featured in Forbes magazine.
Unfortunately, our brains just aren’t equipped for multitasking tasks that do require brainpower. Our short-term memories can only store between five and nine things at once.
When you’re trying to accomplish two dissimilar tasks, each one requiring some level of consideration and attention, multitasking falls apart. Your brain just can’t take in and process two simultaneous, separate streams of information and encode them fully into short-term memory.
When information doesn’t make it into short-term memory, it can’t be transferred into long-term memory for recall later.
If you can’t recall it, you can’t use it. And, presumably, you are trying to learn something from whatever you are doing, right? Instead of actually helping you, multitasking works against you. It’s making you less efficient, not more.
Here is what I have concluded:
My iphone is a large contributor to my addiction to multitasking, I can complete anything, almost anywhere while doing other things. I am guilty of doing this almost constantly unless I am engaged in direct conversation face to face. The action I am taking?
I am going on a multitasking diet, and I am inviting you to join me!
Multitasking is a direct line to adrenaline, largely driven by fear and I have decided to interrupt the pattern to see if I can actually accomplish more, by doing less at a time.
My plan is to write a follow up to this in one month to let you know how it worked.
Are you like me? are you addicted to doing more than one thing at a time? Try bringing this topic into your awareness today, you might be surprised how many simultaneous activities you are engaged in at one time.
Good luck streamlining your tasking!
Lindsey Rainwater is an experienced consultant and coach to the fitness and wellness industry. She specializes in business development and leadership. Currently she is working with the Fitmarc Team helping club owners all over the south central region of the united states propel their business forward via group exercise solutions. For more information about lindsey, follow her @lindseyrainh2o