I’ve posted a few times (here, here and here) about my inability to focus on one thing at a time for longer than about 10 seconds. The short recap is that supposedly I lose 2.1 hours a day in productivity because of my propensity to do 15 things at once. Check out my desk today – piles, mounds, and dead flowers abound; and that’s an improvement from yesterday. But, to be fair, I just got back from 2 weeks away and my mail stack was literally 6 feet tall (that’s not an exaggeration). I still have about a foot of it left to go through.
Well, it turns out that maybe I will be vindicated for my desk-piling ways! There’s a new article out from Inc. magazine that says
Focusing on one task to the exclusion of others isn’t even an option anymore.
Ha! Take that productivity experts! My messy desk, my 20 open emails, my 5 different Mozilla screens open are a necessary evil in today’s fast paced busy world. I feel like starting a new task just to celebrate!
That doesn’t mean that I’m not going to take some of my lessons from last month’s experiment of working on my Top 5 things every day and integrate them into my work life. I really liked having a clean desk for a change. And, I did make it through emails faster when I worked on them in one-hour increments, rather than flitting back and forth to them in-between tasks.
But, I’m not going to beat myself up quite as much now. After all, as the Inc. article states
We need to appreciate the ways in which multitasking and interruption have become essential to meeting the increasingly nonlinear demands of our jobs.
I couldn’t have said it better myself.