We frequently feel pressured to do more work in less time in our fast-paced, tech society. I'm sure we've all been in a meeting where you're supposed to participate while simultaneously checking emails, alerts, scanning reports, and putting our calls on hold. And for housewives? Cooking supper while on the phone, cleaning up, and watching the kids, etc. are all examples of multitasking at home. Is this fast-paced manner of life and work bringing out the best in us, or is it causing us more damage than good?
Well, let’s look below to find that out.
What is Single Tasking?
Single-tasking refers to doing one job at a time with the least amount of interruption and no distraction. It's connected to the concept of doing less to get more. It's a way of living and working smarter, putting our effort where it pays off rather than wasting it. For example, if a person is watching a movie in the cinema, he is fully concentrated, and there is less or no distraction. That person is single-tasking as his concentration is high on a specific target.
What is Multitasking?
The simultaneous performance of numerous tasks over some time is referred to as multitasking. Instead of waiting for existing tasks to finish, new ones come out. Multitasking, or attempting to accomplish many things at once, is both stressful and ineffective. The world we live in is consumed by the desire to do more. However, when we try to multitask more, we end up doing less.
For instance, if you observe someone in the car next to you eating a sandwich while also talking on his phone and driving, that person is multitasking.
Which one is better? (Single-Task VS Multi-Task)
While it may be relatively simple to chat on the phone while still clearing your inbox, what is the cost of balancing several cognitive tasks? Since the human brain was not built for multitasking, the American Psychological Association discovered that when people attempt to do more than one activity at a time, they perform poorer on both activities. Not only does the value of the task decrease, but it also takes longer to finish since the person takes longer to switch between activities. It takes an average of 25 minutes to continue work after being distracted, according to statistics.
Our brains were designed to focus on one task at a time, so single-tasking allows us to do just that. Rather than dividing your mental energy, you focus on one cognitive activity at a time and give it your whole attention from start to finish. Yet, in a society that values multitasking so highly, it can be tough to convince ourselves of the benefits of doing one thing at a time. Unfortunately, our working surroundings seldom offer much to reduce distractions, and our to-do list continues to grow. So it's best to choose the style that suits our way of working. If you can do one task well at a time, go for single-tasking, otherwise vice versa.