There’s good data that shows none of us are as good at multitasking as we think we are. Actually we’re terrible multitaskers. We do our best work when we do things one at a time.
You might disagree. I didn’t believe it when I heard it from the folks form University of Washington that taught me Dialectical Behavior Therapy. That’s a therapy that does in part a good job of operationalizing common sense. The truth is that we never really multitask meaning that we don’t really do two things at once. We do them one at a time whether we know it or not whether we believe it or not.
When we think we’re multitasking we’re actually moving our attention from one thing say the person we’re having dinner with to another say the phone on the table next to our plate.
It’s natural for our attention to jump from one thing to another. Somebody once described our minds like puppies. They’re curious, well-meaning, and easily distracted. Don’t kick your puppy.
So let’s give up on multitasking and adopt intentionality. Let’s do one thing and then shift our focus to the next thing and do that next thing. Go slower. Remind your puppy to be good. You’ll enjoy the good things more. The bad things will not be worse. Go slower as often as possible.