It’s probably not on your mind to learn how to stop multitasking, but it should be. You might think that the ability to multitask is essential for an entrepreneur like yourself who is trying to start or run a business. Not so! Multitasking is actually one of the least productive ways that women use when trying to succeed with their business efforts.
In this week’s newsletter, I shared with you why multitasking is such a waste of time. Now I’d like to give you a few ways to combat the urge to work on several things at once, and trust me, your business will thank you!
Ways to Fight the Urge to Multitask
We all want to text our friends back, update our Facebook statuses and check out photos on Instagram while we finish an email to a prospective client and start writing a blog post for our new website. But which of those things actually sounds like it’s going to get done? Probably none of them. Here is what I recommend doing instead.
- Choose five to ten minute time slots throughout the day to check your phone and social media. Keep your phone turned off or on silent, put it in your desk drawer and don’t look at it until its time slot arrives. Stay signed out of Facebook on your computer to prevent the urge to pop it open in your browser every time you get bored.
- Reward yourself for finishing a big project. I realize that the prospect of completing one daunting project without stopping to complete little tasks like emails and phone calls is rather unsavory to most of us, so I have no problem with a little self-rewarding when it comes to such things. Make yourself a cup of hot chocolate, take a ten-minute walk outside, or even watch a YouTube video to take your mind off of your duties.
- Learn to turn off your mind to other projects. This one is perhaps the hardest of all. Few of us can really concentrate on one subject without letting our minds wander to tomorrow’s doctor appointment, Sarah’s soccer game, Fluffy’s vet visit or Friday’s dinner company. But if you truly want to complete each task in your business to its utmost potential, you need to give it 100% of your attention.
- Don’t start five projects at once. Tomorrow, when you wake up to 50 new emails, 10 texts and three missed calls, don’t try to get them all answered at once. Unless your business depends on replying to clients or customers within a few hours, you don’t need to bog yourself down with replies. Believe it or not, they can wait. Designate about 30 minutes of your day (and preferably not the first 30 minutes of your actual workday) to answering emails, then work on other projects for a while. If you find yourself with free time, go ahead and tackle them again, but if you try answering them one after the other, you’ll find that’s all you get done in a day!
These might sound like unattainable tasks, but they’re not. All you need is a more streamlined focus! However, most of us do not possess this skill naturally; we must train our minds to select this laser concentration.