Saturday, July 29, 2017

Multitasking is an illusion that causes people to fail

Attention Span of Modern Humans is Less Than a Goldfish’s

In 2000 an average person could concentrate on a task without becoming distracted for 12 seconds. In 2015, it was down to 8.25 seconds – just under that of a goldfish.

This is a big problem and the medical community is increasingly alarmed by modern-day lack of concentration. The average worker loses 2 hours of productivity daily due to distractions and lack of focused work. This issue costs the U.S. 588 billion dollars a year!

What’s going on, why can’t we focus?

Brain Power is Determined by Behaviors & Boredom

Did you ever think that you behavior might affect your ability to concentrate?

Contrary to a widely held belief, multitasking is counterproductive. Scientific research now says monotasking (doing one thing at a time) is the best approach at work and home.

Multitasking means you are jumping from task to task, this is counterproductive because you're training your brain to have a shorter and less efficient attention span!

By changing your behavior and taking 10 or 15 minutes of focused time to do just one thing you will begin to notice a big improvement in your ability to stay focused. By doing this you may be able to finish one task, and that’s great. Then, move on and complete another. You will start to feel accomplished and productive.

Another behavioral concern is being plugged into different devices simultaneously. Laptops, computers, applications, and cell phones are constantly monitoring the information & social highways. With the bombardment of notifications, pop-ups and ads that fight for your attention it’s no wonder you are in a mental fog. Try turning your devices to mute, schedule a time to check them if you need to, for example, every 30 minutes, or hour depending on your situation.

Boredom is another culprit to lack of focus and concentration. Chronically bored people aren’t engaged with life. Their ability to focus, concentrate, and be productive is diminished to a detrimental level causing problems on the job, at home and in relationships.

Taking control of your boredom can be done by changing your mindset about what’s boring you.

If you find yourself constantly watching cat videos at work and not engaged in your job, ask yourself, “If I could change anything about my job, what would it be?” Or, “The tasks I find the most mundane, how can I make them more fun, or easier?”

Be creative, focus on others when possible. Search for avenues to make the job environment more exciting and stimulating.

A splendid example of this is reflected in the caring and creative acts of a janitor working in a cancer ward. He noticed how stressed the nursing staff was so he started using colored trash liners, unusual colors, and no two trash cans looked alike. This tickled the nurses and he told each of them to raise the liner and look inside. At the bottom of the trash can was a sticky note with a clue to finding a hidden treasure on the unit. So, he started a scavenger hunt for the nurses once a week. This simple act brought excitement, fun and a much-needed distraction.

Struggling with Mental Hiccups - Maybe Your Body Needs Attention

Can’t find your keys again?

Do you struggle to just get dressed and out the door in the morning?

Fatigue is concentration’s worst enemy. If you have an ongoing problem with getting quality sleep you will experience routine and pervasive concentration problems.

Stress is a big killer of our ability to focus. The longer your to-do list is, the more stress you will feel. Stress causes major problems with focus and concentration.

Do a personal inventory; are you constantly multitasking? How can you reduce the amount of stimuli from technology? Are there areas of your life that you’re completely bored with? How can you reduce fatigue and stress? Making simple changes in these areas is a powerful start to positive change.

The results you will enjoy from these small steps will make monumental differences in the quality of your life.

And, your life will thank you for it!

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