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Want Better Results? Multitask Less

Ryan Bryant on August 22, 2018

Want Better Results? Multitask Less
It’s not possible to focus on too many things at once, even when it seems necessary. Multitasking can lead to reduced attention, and can annihilate both your energy and productivity.

So what can you do? Read on to keep both your productivity and sanity high:

1. Unplug

When you’re diving into a project, do you really need to keep your email open? Is that Skype window absolutely necessary?

Each time you stop what you’re doing to respond to an email or send a quick message, you completely derail your attention to the task at hand. It can take a while to get back into the groove, and you may make simple mistakes if your focus is in multiple places.

Consider only checking emails at pre-planned times of the day (for example, one member of the Levant team checks email at 8am and 5pm—and that’s it!). This will allow you to block off time to focus on your work without the distractions inherent in modern living.

2. Work in a dedicated space

Many of us work from home nowadays, which is super convenient. But this convenience comes at a price: if you’re attempting to work from your comfy couch, odds are you won’t get much done. Most of us are conditioned to relax in our homes. If your couch is where you lounge in your pajamas while you binge on Netflix, you’ll be a lot less inclined to finish that important spreadsheet while you’re sitting there.

Have a dedicated space for your work, somewhere with minimal distractions you can leave behind at the end of the day. Whether it’s your desk at the office or one in a guest bedroom, use that workspace to its fullest potential.

If your workspace is too comfortable or associated with non-work activities, create a space that is work-friendly and allows you to focus. You’ll increase your productivity, and be less affected by inevitable distractions.

3. Kill your notifications

Push notifications on your phone can crush your productivity. If you’re constantly getting pinged by Instagram and Snapchat all day while you’re trying to write, for example, it will take you much longer to finish your work than it would otherwise. Throughout the day, notifications divert our attention, and hold us back from finishing important tasks.

Take advantage of your phone’s Do Not Disturb functionality. Check those app settings and turn off notifications. Not only will you get more work done, you’ll likely feel less oppressed by the technology in your life. If you’re experiencing apps of your own volition instead of when they demand your attention, you’ll develop a healthier relationship with the technology that makes life easier.

4. Keep a list

It might sound rudimentary, but keeping a daily checklist of all the tasks you need to complete can do wonders for your productivity. A list will keep you grounded, and ensure you’ve got your mind on the task at hand. Plus, it’s psychologically satisfying to cross something off a list.

It doesn’t have to be a complex list—a short rundown of your daily or weekly tasks is enough to keep you grounded. Lists encourage you to focus on one task at a time, which boosts focus and discourages jumping over to other projects. Plus, if you combine your daily list with the other productivity tips, you’ll notice that your daily list will get smaller and smaller as time goes by.

Don’t let your work drown in the muck of multitasking. Get your focus back and do your best work.

Now, go work on that project you’ve been putting off!