Picture this. You’re working on a client job. Out of the corner of your eye you see an email come through. You sneak a peek and see that it is something you can answer in two seconds so you do so.
Then another email comes through and it has a quick action item attached to it so you figure you may as well get that done so you can clear the email out of your inbox.
Then your phone rings. You take the call while returning to the job you were working on before and then realise you can’t do both things so you idly muck around on the internet while you’re on the phone.
The phone call finishes but your attention is still on that cool blog post you saw on twitter and once you’ve read that blog post at the bottom is a link to something else that seems interesting …
Does this sound familiar?!
I think many of us pride ourselves on our abilities to do several things at one time. But have you ever considered how much this is affecting your overall productivity? It probably means you are not actually doing anything well because your attention is not ever 100% focused on the task at hand!
And by skipping quickly from one thing to another, you overlook important details or worse, forget to finish something you started!
Try this and see how you go. Start a task … and then finish it. Do not have a look at that email that just came in. Do not take that call that can be returned later. Do not “give your mind a rest” and have a quick browse on facebook!
Then repeat … continually throughout the day. You might be surprised just how much more productive you are.