Argh-multitasking. We think we have it all under control. We’ve Got this.. Um, NO we don’t. So-I compiled the creative’s guide to getting shiz done.
Us creative types have some interesting traits. One is that we are always trying to multi-task. Sometimes, it totally back-fires and then we get stifled and nothing gets done. The struggle is for real. I deal with it frequently. I compiled a few things that heave helped me focus more and thought that I should share them with my fellow creative minds.
People are finally waking up to realize that multitasking is not really a thing. The human brain doesn’t have the ability to truly focus on more than one thing at a time and do it well. Outside of the automatic functions of your brain (such as walking, talking, and breathing), you cannot do serious work or even play with your kids right if you’re trying to do more than one thing at a time.
The human brain just can’t multitask. That’s a fact found out by studies conducted by many scientific organizations and educational institutions like Stanford University. Accept that fact so that you can learn to be more productive and break the multitasking habit.
* Turn Off the Noise: Noise is anything that distracts you from the thing that you’re currently doing. Turn off your cell phone, turn off your email, turn off the TV and truly focus on that book you’re trying to read. Turn it all off and truly focus on that work you’re doing for your clients. Turn it off and really focus on playing with your son for fifteen minutes. And for goodness sake, turn it all off while you’re enjoying dinner with your family. OK, for me, I must have music playing in my headphones as I work because it drowns out the chatter of the kids playing and arguing. I found an app called Focus@will though that I really like.
* Create To-Do Lists: When it comes to stopping yourself from multitasking, the best friend you have is your to-do list. Include everything you need and should do in a day on your to-do list so that you can know what you’re facing. I have personally started adding like everything to my lists, like I mean every thing! You may find you do not have time to watch that rerun of Friends or spend all that time on Facebook.
* Prioritize the Lists: Once you create a to-do list it’s important to put it in order of priority. Anything with a due date is easier to put into priority but remember to put yourself up at the top of the list. Your health, your family, and your life are more important than anything else. It’s important to understand this as you set up your avoidance systems to multitasking.
* Set up Schedules and Systems to Avoid Multitasking: Use your list to set up a calendar and task reminder system that will help you see how productive you are. You want to actually track the time you spend on each thing so that you can get really good at saying yes or no to new things because you know how much time you really have.
* Learn the Most Effective Way to Use Your Calendar: Your calendar isn’t just for work or doctor appointments. Your calendar can be used as a to-do list. Use something like Google Calendar so that you can easily see everything at a glance for any given day. You can even set up reminders for yourself. Schedule personal and business items on the same calendar, remembering how important it is to put yourself first.
* First Things First: When you look at your calendar, make sure you set things up by time. Always give yourself more time for each thing than you think you need. A good rule of thumb is to work out how long you think it will take and multiply it by 1.5 to get a better time. If you finish before your time is up, that’s great. Take some time out to walk around, throw a dance party,read a book, and clear your mind.
* Practice Makes Perfect: The more you learn to tune out interruptions and stop trying to do everything at once, the more you’ll like focusing on one thing at a time. You’ll find that you get more done, have more free time, and improve your outlook exponentially.
Multitasking is not something you want to do. You cannot become good at it. Don’t tell people you’re a good multitasker; you’re not. No one is. You just think you are. Try putting the things in place that are on this list and track your progress, and you’ll see that you are far more productive when you break the multitasking habit than you were before.
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So, what tips can you add?