Do you believe in multitasking? Numerous studies have proven that multitasking is a myth. You don’t actually get more done. In fact, you probably work more slowly because your brain has to continuously re-focus on each task. Scientists have discovered that the human brain can only focus on one thing at a time which means that multitasking should be called rapid sequential tasking or something along those lines because you’re really shifting focus back and forth to different tasks.
So why do people continue to multitask? Because it makes them feel good, and productive. According to a study conducted at The Ohio State University one study showed that multitasking often gave students an emotional boost, even when it hurt their cognitive functions. Segmenting your work day, may be another way to achieve the same satisfying benefits and get more accomplished.
What Does Segmenting Your Work Day Mean?
Segmenting means to divide into parts. In this case the parts are hours, or minutes. You probably do this to a certain extent when you schedule appointments on your calendar. You estimate that an appointment will take thirty minutes. However, most people don’t segment their daily work tasks. For example, they may sit down to write a blog post and write until he post is complete. Or, if they get satisfaction from multitasking they may write a blog post and check their email at the same time.
Why Segmenting Works
Segmenting is effective because it forces you to focus on the task at hand. For example, if you’re writing a blog post and you’ve allotted thirty minutes to write it then you’re not going to be as likely to surf the internet, check y our email or any other distractions or multitasks. You know you have thirty minutes to finish your task and you’ll work to achieve it in that length of time. It’s also quite satisfying to hammer through a task list and check things off. You’ll likely find that you get twice as much done in half the time.
Making Segmenting Work for You
To make segmenting work of you, you need to be able to do a few things. First, you need to be able to accurately assess the length of time it will take you to get something done. In the beginning, it’s wise to overestimate time so that you don’t get behind and discouraged. Additionally, you need to have some degree of self control to stick to your day’s plan. This can be helped by adding an incentive to the day. For example, if you get everything on your task list done on time you might treat yourself to an hour off to do whatever you’d like to do.
Segmenting your day can take some time to get used to, especially if you’re a long time multitasked. Give it a try. You’ll probably discover there’s a better, more enjoyable and more efficient way to spend your time.
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From Deanna Maio – Systems & Implementation Strategist http://DelegatedtoDone.com