Multi-tasking is a hoax. In fact it’s one of the worst developments associated with the personal computer revolution. It robs us of time, reduces focus, and has a negative impact on reaching deadlines adn getting stuff done. So here is my top 10 list of ways to avoid the multi-tasking hoax:
- Only have one computer application open at a time
- Only check your emails at 2 designated times of the day (say 9am and 3pm)
- Don’t write long to do lists (guilty). Instead write down the answer to this question: ‘The one thing I must finish today’
- Close your eyes while taking phone calls to ensure you listen to the other party.
- Learn to say ‘no’. Tell the other person why, you can’t do it, or offer for them to pick something to drop off.
- Meditate daily. Think about long term goals
- Focus on depth of activities, not number of activities completed. Do less things, better.
- Never tell anyone you are busy. We are all busy. It leads to pin balling around stuff instead of finishing.
- have defined goals for the year. Ask yourself each morning how your are moving towards them.
- Add your item for number 10 in the comments.
Startup Blog says: Multitasking is your enemy. Avoid it.
I’ve had to very quickly pull together a social media straetgy for a project I am working on. The timeline I had was a few hours. I’m certain that only due to the fact that I’ve been an avid blogger for a few years was I able to meet the deadline. Blogging creates great habits. It forces us to consider our chosen topic deeply and regularly. (startups & marketing in my case) It forces us to respond to our ideas quickly, to trust their value and publish them anyway, before tomorrow comes. It’s a personal newspaper and our readers want to know what’s new everyday. They’re not looking for perfection, but inspiration.
Whatver we do, are interested in and regardless of our industry, blogging is a must for those of us wanting to get better and faster.
If school didn’t start at 9am what time would we turn up?
If tax returns didn’t have to be done by a certain date, when would we do it?
If childbirth was possible at any age, when would we conceive?
If our stomach didn’t have an eating deadline, when would we feed it?
Nature is smart and builds in deadlines for us.We ought understand the nature of deadlines.
Quite often in startup land we try to shun the usual behaviour of more established institutions like schools and corportations. And in many area this is a valid concept. But as far as deadlines are concerned this is something we should adopt. We should be strict on deadlines in the same way we had exams, and due dates at work. It’s a simple and vital discipline.
Work expands with the time allowed for it’s completion. So the time must be stamped. With an agreed deadline, we must cram to get it done. We must be accountable and our business will benefit.
If we don’t embrace the simple discipline of deadlines our more astute competitors will evolve much quicker, and more quickly make their stuff awesome. Deadlines ensure we continue to make our company, product or website awesome. Because each deadline is an incremental improvement. Without deadlines all we end up with is awesome and ever evolving blueprints, which our customers never see, or gain any benefit from.
Startup blog says – embrace deadlines and win.