Multi-tasking is a myth. It sounds like a great idea, but it doesn’t work. Single tasking (or “solotasking”) is the “it” kid right now for good reason: your productivity explodes when you narrow your focus to one thing at a time. And while you may not realize it, chances are good that your to-do list is secretly eating away at your sanity.
Every time you take a look at that list, your mind starts working on every item simultaneously. So while you’re hard at work trying to focus on the first item, your brain is processing, “wow, how am I going to do X, Y & Z all by five today?”
The following is a simple, pen-and-paper solution for actually getting important work done now. I call it StackTask:
Step One: Make some cards
You can use anything you can write on, but I recommend using something substantial like 3×5 cards (cut into smaller pieces). I happen to have a ton of leftover cardstock I’m re-purposing and it works perfectly. I cut the sheets into 1″ x 2″ cards.
Step Two: Write each of your top-priority tasks on one card
Try to keep the total between five and ten. If you blow through all of these tasks early, just start this process again with the next tasks. Make sure the tasks are specific, measurable and short enough Continue reading