Jul 15, 2019

How to Multitask Without Losing Productivity

We have such limited time on our hands after we’ve factored in sleeping and being stuck in traffic. Those things are part of your day no matter how busy or lax your schedule is. Your remaining working and functional hours need to be used wisely so that you will not run behind on your tasks and stress over achieving your personal goals.

Naturally, one of the solutions that come up is multitasking. However, if you do this the wrong way, you might lose time--without achieving anything at all. Here’s how to multitask in an effective and productive way.

Don’t Multitask Work at Night

Your productivity takes a nosedive if you don’t have time for yourself. Then, you’ll feel burnout and not want to do anything at all. Combat this by multitasking work-related tasks during the day and leaving your nighttime open for some fun activities for yourself. You can still multitask at night, but make sure nothing is work-related, so you will be ready for bed relaxed. What can you do, then? If you’ve already bought your face mask online, it’s the perfect time to put them on while you catch up on your favorite Netflix show. You can also do general online shopping during this time. If you meal prep, this is the perfect time to prepare next day’s lunch. You’re doing things that will make the next day better, but you’re not overloading your brain with work until you fall asleep.

Choose Background Tasks Wisely

There are no two tasks that require the same amount of brainpower. Remember this when you’re choosing two things to multitask. The truth is, you’re not getting two things done at once; you’re task switching very quickly, and this might result in you not getting important tasks done on time because it competes for another task’s attention. Multitask better by choosing your main task, finishing a portion of it before you switch to a less important task, then switching back to your main task to finish another chunk of it. If you’re stuck writing a 5000-word paper, take a break when you reach 1500 words to answer your calls or emails. Then, go back to write another 1500 words before you take another break to have your lunch delivered. By the time you finish the last 2000 words, your food should be ready and you can celebrate by eating.

Spend Each Minute Wisely

You’re multitasking to save time, but what are you doing with the free time you have? If you have two minutes to spare, arrange your shoes or do the dishes. You don’t need to wait until your favorite show is on and call it multitasking. You’re only productive if you’re using every minute you have wisely. And that’s not what’s happening when you cram all your tasks in your “busy” hours but procrastinate the rest of the time. Give yourself time to relax and just focus on one thing--even if it’s not work-related. Use every minute to lessen the number of tasks you need to do so you don’t feel overwhelmed.

No matter how much time you have, if you’re not using it wisely, you’ll still feel overwhelmed. And though you can multitask to get most tasks done, your productivity shouldn’t suffer.