Do you pride yourself in your multi-tasking ability? Think again!
A study carried out at the British Institute of Psychiatry found that multi-tasking reduced workers’ intelligence and that those distracted by multi-tasking saw a ten-point fall in their IQ, over twice the impact of smoking or marijuana use.
Bottom line, multi-tasking makes you dumber and less productive.
How could that be?
A couple of reasons, says the study. First, multi-tasking is less efficient, due to the need to switch gears for each new task, and the switch back again.
Multi-tasking is more complicated, and thus makes you more prone to stress and errors.
Multi-tasking causes distractedness . . . so you never really learn something well in the first place.
Your brain can only make one decision at a time. When distracted while performing a task, it takes a certain amount of time to begin the new task, complete the new task and get back on track with the original task.
If you are trying to simplify your life this year, reduce multi-tasking. Even just for today. Let’s see if it makes a difference. Let me know what you think.
It’s really about being “more present.” These two words can make a huge difference in simplifying life. Living here and now, in the moment, keeps you aware of life, of what is going on around you and within you.
It does wonders for your sanity.
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I read this study too. It was fascinating and logical. I can believe that multitasking can lower quality of work. My prior job required multitasking to the extreme and I found I had to rewrite reports due to the distractions in found in my job. I had to be very diligent when editing reports. Love reading your blogs. They are so interesting.
For years I worked at a factory where multitasking was used . I found myself on a team of 4 to 6 people where we were required to work on every opperation to assemble the product. A worker was required to work on 3 pieces at a time. On each of those 3pieces we were to stat at the beginning and assemble the first opperation. Then take the three pieces and move on to the next opperation and continue on with your pieces until you got to the end of the line. There would be someone working on your heels on the opperation behind you and they might be faster than you were. They’d be pushing you to hurry up. Then at the end of the line you would have to pack this finished product and put it in the box . If the box was full you would need to stop and make a new box . This was very stressful and a person was on their feet the whole time. If you had to go to the bathroom this upset the whole line. If you had machine trouble you had to run over to a line set up as substitute lines with every machine. If someone else was using the machine you needed you were out of luck and your line would bottleneck and go down. It was supposed to cause less corporal tunnel and other work related issues but it only seemed to make things worse as people got stressed out and tempers flared. But it was the latest things and it was there to stay.
When I look back on it now I’m so glad to be retired. After reading your comment everything you say makes a whole lot of sense and I hope these company CEOs read these facts too.