Why Multi Tasking Is Bad

9 Comments Posted in Personal Development

multi-tasking-optimized

Image courtesy of totalaldo

The Modern World Of Multi Tasking

Multiple tabs were opened and you are surfing multiple websites at one go. Your phone rang and you are talking to your friend on the phone while chatting with multiple people on MSN. Does this sound familiar?

As the pace of the modern world increases, we are multi tasking with the belief that it will help us to be more productive but is it really true that multi tasking is the key to enhanced productivity?

My Productivity When Multi Tasking

In the past when I work on my blog, I would open up multiple tabs which consist of my blog, other multiple blogs that I frequently comment on, forums, Youtube, news site and my email web page.

I will then craft out my new post but in the mean time I tend to have the bad habit of clicking around the other tabs and checking my email in one instance then reading articles of other blogs and this keep on going over and over again.

This multi tasking habit had caused me a great decline in productivity because I am wasting time whenever I went on to do other things when I should be concentrating on my blog post and it is also hard to get myself back into the “writing mode” which result in wasted time again. I had also tried to write an article while listening to music and the result is disastrous because I found it hard to concentrate on 2 things at the same time.

Will Multi Tasking Make It Easier For You To Achieve Your Goals?

Did you set multiple goals for yourself with full of hope that you will achieve them but at the deadline you find that you did not achieve any of the goals that you set for yourself? This is a case which happens frequently when people set too much goals and chasing all of them at the same time.

Setting goals is important because it help us to see the end line but having too much goals is self sabotaging. I find that it is hard for me to reach multiple goals in the same time because my focus is pulled in many directions and I cannot direct all my energy into one area.

Multi Tasking And Health

Multi tasking takes a toll on our body by releasing a stress hormone cortisol which will cause health problems such as mental burnout, depression or heart conditions. Multi tasking also greatly increase our accident prone rate and examples such as this…

multi-tasking-into-water

Or this…

bike-crash-optimized

may happen.

Parting Words

In many cases when I tried multi tasking, I found that my productivity dwindled and I couldn’t achieve satisfactory results but there are people who swear by multi tasking. So does multi tasking works for you?

Cheers

Vincent

Bad at multi tasking blogger

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9 Responses to “Why Multi Tasking Is Bad”

  1. Vincent says:

    @Hi Bonnie,

    It seem that we are quite similar in some sense. I hate it when I lost my focus due to interruption and I got to waste time to refocus again to my previous task. It seem like a waste of time.

    @Hi ICE,

    I believe one man’s meat is another man’s poison. 🙂

    @Hi Clinton,

    I prefer using sequential methods to get things done too. One thing at a time is definitely the way to go for me too.

    @Hi Ian,

    I understand where you are coming from. There are people who can multi task well and kudos for them but I believe I’m more suited to single tasking. 🙂

    @Hi Broderick Allen,

    I try to cut down on opening multiple tabs as it tend to distract me. For example when I am working on my new article, I wouldn’t open multiple tabs with facebook and such to prevent me from clicking it. I found that this new habit help me to keep my focus and in the end I could finish the article sooner than expected.

    Cheers
    Vincent
    Personal Development Blogger

  2. Broderick Allen says:

    I would agree with Clinton. Usually when you’re multitasking, the quality of your work suffers with each task. Then there are sometimes where you have to multitask. I try not to do it, but sometimes it gets hard not to with things like the multiple tabs like you mentioned in the article.

  3. Ian Peatey says:

    This is so true for me. I’m always trying to do several things at once and fail to any of them really well of efficiently. And you must have seen my computer .. your description of multiple tabs is an exact description of mine!!!

    I’m not sure I agree though that it’s a universal truth. I know plenty of people who are terrible at multi-tasking and plenty who are really very good at it. I think it’s a masculine / feminine thing (I don’t mean men/women) with the feminine being to hold attention across a wide number of different things and the masculine being more narrow and focused. Just a thought.

    Ian

  4. Another great post Vincent!

    Yes, it’s true that multitasking dwindles your productivity. Sometimes it doesn’t seem like it, but when you look closer you can see that nothing is getting done. It’s also hard to regulate progress because things are spinning. As you said, it’s also not to great on your health either.

    I find that multitasking completely cuts your productivity in less than half. Just think, you have the TV on, and you’re also coding a complex script. Your mind isn’t being split evenly, 20% of your attention is on the TV, the other 20% is on your code and the rest(60%) is battling for control.

    However another ordeal comes up. It’s not always as easy as turning off the TV. Sometimes you’re in a busy place, people are constantly making noise. It just gets hectic. Sometimes you just have to do your best to stay focused.

    Other times you NEED to multi task just to get through a day. However it is rare. If I have a lot of stuff to do one day, I’ll plan it sequentially, instead of trying to do everything at the same time.

    I try never to multi-task because I get so much more done when I’m focused. Sure it seems like lots is getting done, because you’re busy. But at the end of the day, nothings been accomplished. So it’s best not to multi-task, if you can help it.

    Great post, really enjoyed the read!

    Regards
    Clinton Skakun

  5. ICE says:

    It depends on what kind of tasks you’re doing at that moment. 🙂
    I’m a multi-tasker.

  6. Hi Vincent!

    I wish more people would realise that multi-tasking isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

    I’ve worked in administrative roles for several years, something which many people think requires an aptitude for multi-tasking but I find I work best when I single task & work sequentially through a list of priorities, and if I’m interupted by a phone or urgent email, I’ll just focus on that for the amount of time it requires and then re-focus on what I was doing before. When I’ve attempted to multi-task I’ve found that I’ve been more prone to making mistakes, like posting something to Australia by accident 😀