Sunday, July 4, 2010

How (and Why) to Stop Multitasking (via Harvard Business Review)

I'm always multitasking and I might want to stop doing that. This article shows why.

"A study showed that people distracted by incoming email and phone calls saw a 10-point fall in their IQs. What's the impact of a 10-point drop? The same as losing a night of sleep. More than twice the effect of smoking marijuana.

Doing several things at once is a trick we play on ourselves, thinking we're getting more done. In reality, our productivity goes down by as much as 40%. We don't actually multitask. We switch-task, rapidly shifting from one thing to another, interrupting ourselves unproductively, and losing time in the process.

You might think you're different, that you've done it so much you've become good at it. Practice makes perfect and all that.

But you'd be wrong."

Read more: How (and Why) to Stop Multitasking - Peter Bregman - Harvard Business Review