What is multitasking and how does it affect your performance?

If you check your email while shopping at the store, talk on the phone while driving, edit two file reports at the same time, chat with a friend while studying, and you are multitasking. These are all examples of multitasking.

What is Multitasking?

Human multitasking is simply the act of doing more than one task at a time.

What happens in the brain during multitasking?

Neuroscience says that our brain is designed to focus on one thing at a time and to be able to do one thing. Man is not a multitasking creature, he just shifts his focus quickly between different tasks and tasks. In fact, we do not do things at the same time, but move forward by changing and replacing them quickly. According to studies, only 2.5% of people can use multitasking efficiently and effectively.

Academic studies show that when we try to do two or more things at the same time, we will have less efficiency and productivity, and we are more likely to make mistakes. If these tasks are complex and require more attention, these possibilities increase.

Of course, this is probably not the case for multitasking in daily routine. For example, listening to music while walking or arranging clothes while watching TV. But the more complex the tasks, the greater the negative effects of multitasking.

Multitasking actually divides our focus and senses. Therefore, we can not focus all our attention on one subject, and as a result, the quality of work decreases. In one study, doing various things while driving was shown to have a negative effect on a person’s performance while driving. Other research has shown that people who try to do several things at the same time, even when they want to focus on one thing, are more distracted and find it harder to focus. Experts believe that the more we work on multitasking, the less we achieve. Because we slowly lose the ability to focus enough to learn.

Do women perform better in multitasking?

The short answer to this question is “yes”.

According to research and experiments, women perform much better in this area than men. In a recent experiment, participants were asked to walk on a treadmill and rotate their right hand (which uses the left half of the brain), while being asked some mental questions; Images of color cards were displayed, each color with the name of the color written on it, and some of the color names and the color of the card do not match. Participants had to identify these cards as soon as possible. The results of this experiment showed that women performed much better.

However, experts believe that multitasking still has a negative effect on people’s performance and it is better to avoid it.

How to strengthen our multitasking capability?

In the first place, it is better to avoid multitasking, because it is not really an ideal approach. Try as much as possible to never get used to doing this. Also, never sacrifice effectiveness for efficiency and effectiveness. Multitasking may sometimes allow things to be done faster, but it is likely to reduce the quality of doing things. But if for any reason you have no choice but to use it, we recommend that you use the following strategies and strategies to improve as much as possible and reduce its negative effects.

  • Plan

The first step to multitasking is to plan and set goals. You do not want to be frustrated if you cannot get the right pitch so invest in a good capo.

To begin, write realistic and logical goals for yourself. If your goals are too big and unattainable, you will get undue stress and anxiety. It is better to divide these goals into shorter and more accessible sections. Then, set aside a reasonable amount of time to reach each of these goals.

Make a list of these tasks and schedules and prioritize them. You can write this list in applications such as Trello or Excel. Because they help you focus. In other words, try to get everything ready before you start, and when you start working, you no longer need to plan any further. There is nothing worse than noticing the mistakes of planning and scheduling in the middle of work and having to re-allocate some of your time and focus to it. Remember that this issue itself imposes a kind of Multitasking on you!

  • Put similar tasks in a group

Multitasking itself is a very complex process and has a very negative impact on people’s performance. But to master it more, it is better to choose things that are of the same nature and related to each other. In other words, the topics you work on should be similar to each other. Because if your mind is going to move from one task to another, it’s better for them to be similar and have more in common. Your short-term memory can not hold very large amounts of different information. So, try to do tasks from a project or tasks that have a similar process as multitasking.

For example, if you are doing multiple projects for different clients. Carry out similar projects for each client. In this case, your mind is more efficient and things go easier.

  • Eliminate distractions

Distraction is your enemy. Distraction can be harmful, even when working on the simplest projects; Therefore, when you do several things at the same time, these factors can have catastrophic effects. There are many ways to combat them. But in the first place, you need to identify these factors well. Closing the office door may solve your problem. It may be best to work in the company’s empty conference room for a few hours. Shutting down your laptop, turning off your cell phone, and more can all be ways to increase focus. You may also want to listen to music to increase focus. It all depends on your personal technique.

Remember the law; Your mind has a limited capacity to focus and focuses on only one subject at a time. To do several things, the mind must switch from one task to another. Therefore, the fewer these jumps, the better the performance.

Naturally, after a few hours of focusing and working, your mind wants to be free to think about other things. That is why it is very important to be careful that no external factor contributes to this issue. Multitasking requires all your senses and concentration and you should not let anything get in the way.

  • Keep track of progress

In the first step, we explained that you need to break things down into smaller sections and plan and schedule them. You should return to the same schedule every few hours and review them. If you succeed in achieving all your goals and plans on time, you are on the right track. Keep in mind that everything is going according to plan. In general, we recommend setting short goals that are easily traceable.

There are great software and websites for managing applications and they can help you a lot. Tools like Trello can help you do this better and more efficiently.

  • Rest

Continuous work for a long time during the day is not recommended at all. Brain function and efficiency decline after a while and it needs rest. So be sure to plan your breaks regularly at work. These breaks do not have to be long. A few short breaks during the day can have a dramatic effect on improving your performance. Because multitasking requires a lot more focus and energy, not only do breaks become more important, but you may even need to increase the number.

  • Take time to review tasks

When all the big and small goals are done and the project is completed, you need to take the time to pay attention to the details. At this point you need to review everything again. This may seem unproductive, you may think it is a waste of time. But the review process is one of the main and most necessary steps of any project. This is especially important when you are multitasking. As errors in this method are more likely to occur, re-examination becomes more important.

Not all people do multitasking in the same way, because the abilities of our brains are all different. But since the human brain is not capable of complete and successful multitasking, we need to use the above tools and strategies to improve brain function in this process. With a lot of repetition and practice, you can get rid of this weakness to some extent and improve your multitasking performance.

14 golden tips to enjoy life as you get older