Let’s take a trip down memory lane. Let your mind your wonder back in time… Think back to a time when a mobile phone was made simply for talking. A time when you only got online was from the big clunky computer sitting on your desk… Do you remember? Believe it or not, it wasn’t that long ago.
In the last decade or so, the technology genies brought us the wonderful inventions of smart phones, tablets, wireless connectivity, hotspots and a host of other awesome devices – all designed to keep us connected. Combine this with the introduction of social media and we have a way to stay connected with friends (and strangers) around the world. We can make connections and facilitate business deals with anyone whether they are next door or across the globe. All of this access should make us more productive right?
WRONG! Research shows that most of us are not as proficient with multi-tasking as we think we are. We tend to do better and accomplish more things when we dedicated times and spaces to specific tasks, responsibilities and activities. I know. I know. I know you are thinking, “Yeah, but Empress, I am the exception to the rule. Having my emails come to my phone makes sure I address issues as they arise while I’m on the go. Having my social media accounts open while working allows me to me to be accessible to clients, allows me to network and deliver advice and content at a moments notice.” How did I know what you were going to say? It’s because at some point, I’ve said the exact same things.
Then one day I decided to try something… I stopped the phone notifications for all of my email accounts on my phone (right now I think I have about 6 of them I actively monitor). During the work day, I did not log into any social media accounts. I also did not stay logged into my email accounts from my computer for the entire day. I only checked them once an hour. And I have to admit, my productivity increased dramatically!
As someone who teaches workshops on time management I knew what the research said. Shoot, I teach people the techniques they need to make the most use of the 24 hours we’ve all been given. But I wasn’t applying them to my own life. Why? Because just like countless others, I thought I was the exception to the rule.
Well, I’m not and most likely neither are you. I don’t say this to be rude or crude. But let’s face it; everyone claims to be a great multi-tasker and reality most people aren’t. As a general rule you can do one thing at a time phenomenally or you can do multiple things mediocrely at the same time. And let’s face it, whose here to just be mediocre?
So here’s the challenge. For the next week, try to reduce the amount of time you spend on known time-killers such as emails, phone calls and social media by only doing things at designated time during the day. Dedicate the rest of your day to your to-do list. Then check your productivity level and see if you accomplished more or less than you had in previous weeks. I’d love to hear from you to see how this worked for you.
Here’s to getting more done!
As Your Next Big Move Catalyst, Twanna has worked as THE Business & Project Strategist for Empress Business Solutions. For more than 5 years, she’s worked exclusively with solopreneurs to start and grow their businesses. For more tips on how to stay more productive and motivated in business, please sign up for our newsletter.