To briefly recap...if you are working in your office on your dissertation while doing laundry, are you truly multitasking? Yes, you are doing multiple tasks. No, you are not doing them at the same time... Yes, the washer and/or dryer are running at the same time you are in your office writing. No, you didn't do them at the same time. You first stopped writing to go to the laundry room to load and start the machines. While you were loading laundry, that is the only thing you were doing. You weren't loading laundry with your left hand and writing with your right hand simultaneously. You stopped one task to start another. When that task was started, you walked away from it to go back to the office and write. To do that one task.
While this is a great example of how one cannot multitask, it is also a good example of Pareto's Principle. You did not spend 100% of your effort on getting the laundry done. You were also working in your office writing. And although you cannot truly multitask, you were however splitting your effort between laundry and writing. You spent a percentage of your effort washing and drying clothes. Eventually, you were successful at finishing the laundry. When the laundry was done, you achieved a certain high level of completion (success) as calculated by the two tasks you were doing. Laundry done; writing incomplete. But that 20% (let's say that's the accurate calculation) that you spent doing laundry netted you success when you completed the task. And completing the that task can be likened to the 80% success in Pareto's Principle (although more like 50% since we're comparing just 2 tasks...).
Multitasking is just one of many myths that we have been told throughout our years. it is said that those who are able to multitask are successful and accomplished. But, if we pause a moment to think about some of the well known, highly successful people in our era -- Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Rihana, etc. -- they made their success from ONE THING. Gates, software; Bezos, marketplace; Rihana, music... It wasn't until after their big success in their one thing did they move on to other things in addition to their one thing. They didn't attempt to multitask -- Bezos struck it rich through his Amazon business before he added Amazon delivery. He then had success in using his own ground delivery service before he branched out and added airplanes (coming soon!). And still, he is still enjoying great success with his one thing.
I could go on-and-on about this, but I won't bore you... What I am getting at here is that we have to stop allowing these myths to cause us to not reach the success that we would be able to without them. Multitasking, To Do lists, Discipline in life...
Over the next six weeks, I will be writing a series on these myths and what we can do to turn the myth into a truth. How can we navigate the myth in the manner that brings us the results we are seeking? Next week's topic is To Do Lists. I used to be a bullet journal junkie! And what is a bullet journal but a compilation of To Do Lists in one book? It's time to be done with To Do Lists -- even when you "prioritize" them. They go so far against Pareto's Principle, a sound mathematical analysis that has been proven over-and-over again just by people living their lives. It also goes against what I've been talking about via FB live and this blog: your one thing... Let's explore changing our To Do Lists into a Success Sheet. In doing so, we begin to zero in on our one thing.
I will show you how next week.
Peace and Hair Grease,