Cut off the in­ter­rup­tions

HWM (Malaysia) - - FEATURE -

You can ac­tu­ally get more done to­day in the same time to­day with one sim­ple life-hack: Cut off all in­ter­rup­tions when you’re do­ing your work. Eas­ier said than done, I know.

Re­search has found that mul­ti­task­ing ac­tu­ally makes us less pro­duc­tive. Our brains can’t multitask, what it ac­tu­ally does is rapidly tog­gle be­tween tasks, rather than process them all si­mul­ta­ne­ously.

The fancy word for this is “con­tin­u­ous par­tial at­ten­tion.” When peo­ple do mul­ti­ple things at once, they per­form more slowly and less ac­cu­rately than if they fo­cused on a sin­gle task at a time.

Con­tin­u­ous in­ter­rup­tions are as good as “con­tin­u­ous par­tial at­ten­tion.” When you’re in­ter­rupted, whether by a col­league drop­ping in at your desk, or by you check­ing Face­book for “just a minute”, your fo­cus is bro­ken from the task at hand.

There’s no app to help you lock your of­fice door, but there are other ways to lock out in­ter­rup­tions. In real life, you can go some­where se­cluded to do your work (if you have the lux­ury).

If you can’t es­cape your desk, try a pair of noise-can­celling ear buds that block sound out, like the Bose Qui­etCom­fort 20.

To block off all on­line dis­trac­tions, try the app Free­dom. It lets you block In­ter­net con­nec­tions for a pe­riod that you choose, so you can’t even go on­line to watch cat videos when you’re sup­posed to fo­cus.

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