Why Multi-tasking is a Myth?

This blog post is about how “doing it all” at the same time gets nothing done.

Before you read this, take a minute to grasp this. How many tabs are open on your browser right now? How many books on different subjects are in front of you? How many WhatsApp threads are open?

 

If you’re like most aspirants, you probably have a lot of each of these!

In this digital age, multi-tasking is so deeply entrenched into every aspect of our lives. It is not only unhelpful and inefficient, but also absolutely counter-productive. Let us see how

“Multi-tasking” is actually a lie in describing what it is. A more accurate name would be “switch-tasking”. Meaning, we basically split our time into fragments and switch between one task to the other, actively or passively.

 

Let’s take this example, you might have made a great start to your day by picking up a Hindu Editorial and been in the process of making notes from it, but “Tring” you immediately pick your phone to see whose message it is and open the phone to reply. Now back to the editorial. It will take you AT LEAST a few minutes to remember what point you were on, in the editorial. And while you are thinking… another “Tring.”

 

This is why switching between tasks is ultimately inefficient and a waste of time. Because you need to stop one train of thought to start another.

So, how to avoid switching between tasks? Aren’t these interruptions a fact of our lives?

Avoid interruptions by making a schedule of how you spend your time every-day. If you’re spending 7–8 A.M reading The Hindu, you do ONLY that. No phone, messages, WhatsApp, dreaming.

 

Likewise, split your day into zones that don’t have one interfering with the other. For example, 7–8 A.M The Hindu, 9–12 A.M Optional, 2–5 P.M writing practice and so on.

Don’t think about the optional when you are doing GS and vice-versa. After all, you can even dedicate a part of your time each day strictly for Whatsapp or Facebook (If you so REALLY need it) and in that time do nothing else but that.

 

So, budget your time every-day and allocate time-based on priorities. Be constantly aware of what you have decided to do in the assigned time to ensure you don’t go astray. Imagine how much impact this can have if you did this over ONE LONG YEAR.

 

More than smart-work, what separates a topper from the rest is the mental discipline to do what one should do at any given point in time.

 

Try this simple exercise to prove to yourself that multitasking is inefficient and a terrible waste of time.

 

Take a pen and a piece of paper.

Now prepare yourself to write this sentence “Multitasking is a myth” and have a timer next to you.

For every letter, write a number underneath that letter, starting with 1 and proceeding in that order.

Like,

M U L T I T A S K I N G

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11

  1. Now, start the timer and write M, then write 1 underneath it, then U, followed by 2 underneath it and so on.
  2. Next, start the timer and this time, write the full sentence first and then write all the numbers underneath each letter.

The results will be clear. Just like that of a topper and the rest.

 

Published by

Officers IAS Academy

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