One Thing at a Time
Harvard Business Review on the “magic of doing one thing at a time”:
[B]etween 25% and 50% of people report feeling overwhelmed…. It’s not just the number of hours we’re working, but also the fact that we spend too many continuous hours juggling too many things at the same time. What we’ve lost, above all, are stopping points, finish lines and boundaries.
Do you answer email during conference calls (and sometimes even during calls with one other person)? Do you bring your laptop to meetings and then pretend you’re taking notes while you surf the net? Do you eat lunch at your desk? Do you make calls while you’re driving, and even send the occasional text, even though you know you shouldn’t?
Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.
[W]hen you switch away from a [task] you’re increasing the time it takes to finish that task by an average of 25 percent. But most insidiously… you’re relentlessly burning down your available reservoir of energy over the course of every day.
I’m working on this. Hard. But also hard is trying to do it when the inherent setup of computers and work days and expectations work against it.
I’ve been reading up to try to find hacks and helps (here was not so helpful for me, but here makes some sense, for starters).
Are you good at doing one thing at a time, or have you gotten better at it? What helps you?