FOCUS on 1 goal vs "multi-tasking" several projects?? Whats better?

by jm95
15 replies
In my personal experience I have found that I can achieve best results by focusing on only ONE major goal/project at a time.

I really envy those of you who can juggle and multi-task multiple projects.

The challenge is that I am always thinking of new ideas, which pull me in new directions. Sound familiar?

I recently got a promo email on goal setting from NobleSamurai, and the guy talks about focusing on ONLY ONE MAJOR goal. Then when that is accomplished going to another one.

What has delivered the best results for you, and how did you do it?
#focus #goal #multitasking #projects
  • Profile picture of the author kellyyarnsbro
    Multi-tasking isn't a great idea if you want to be effective, i see lots of people fail because of lack on focus. See a famous boxer for example Pacquiao, he's a great boxer yet see what happened after he got into politics.
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  • Profile picture of the author TheDreamerSpot
    Focus on one project at a time, but always have one planned for when you're done.
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    • Profile picture of the author malcsimm
      Hi JM95

      In reality, you are likely to have multiple projects to focus on, so prioritising and focus become hyper-important. It's not so hard.

      The worst thing is, never getting down to any project at all - reading emails, sales pages, maintenance jobs, purposeless Skyping/Facebooking, etc. But this b*ggers you whether you have 1 project on your list or - whether you have 10. It's your basic approach to projects/tasks which is crucial.

      The thing is, how you manage your tasks. To do this, you just make sure that every active project of yours (the ones not active yet can go on a different project list) has one or more "next tasks" associated with it and these all appear on your task list, or to do list. Now, every morning, first thing, you sort your task list into order and have 4, 5, 6, 7, or 8 items on it probably. A good way to do this is to have a "Now" list, a "Next" list and a "Soon" list. Your Now list has 4-5-6-7-8 times on it, as I said, your Next list maybe another 10-20, etc.

      The numbers are approximate - just to give you an idea. But the point is, you can scan Now, Next and Soon, and juggle the tasks around to make you happy. Then work your way through the Now list right now.

      I always start with my emails first thing and that takes me 20 minutes or so. Anything prompting me to take more than 2 minutes on an email becomes a task. So I don't get dragged off on something I didn't mean to (or, at least, it happens less :-| LOL)

      Then, when I my morning routine - starting with emails - out of the way, I get to the task which is moving one of my projects forward a step. Yesterday and the day before I was concentrating on one particular project to do with redeveloping a site. Someone else is also working on that and my work on it for the last 2 days moved it forward.

      Today I am going back to another project I need to move on and when I have a 2-3 hour chunk of time later today, this is the one I'll move forward.

      So, that's how you manage multiple projects: make sure each active project has one or more tasks on your task lists, and then work through your tasks methodically. Then, once a week, look through all your lists - to dos and projects - move to dos around between your lists (this is much, much easier than trying to prioritise each to do - eg scoring it) and checking your projects lists to move projects from active to inactive or vice versa as your priorities change.

      The To Do system I use is Getting Things Done by David Allen, and the method I use to apply it is the brilliantly simple The Secret Weapon - The Secret Weapon: Evernote and GTD smoothly integrated into TSW . This works well. Really well.

      :-)

      Malc
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  • Profile picture of the author Gary Ning Lo
    Focus wins hand down against multi tasking...

    There has been lots of research on the subject.

    Do a google search

    Cheers,

    Gary Ning Lo
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  • Profile picture of the author WorkWithMorgan
    focus focus focus.

    it's the key distinguishing feature of superstar achievers.
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  • Profile picture of the author Maya2066
    Focusing is what is going to lead you to achieve your goals. Focus and persistence. That does'nt mean that you don't have other projects planned, but what has helped me the most is to focus on one project. Having said that, some people seem to be able to multi task and get results.
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  • Profile picture of the author mnjuguna
    Stay focused....... Sticktoitve-ness is key for success but multitasking is peddled as a wonderdrug nowadays though its a cause for incomplete projects, no time for important things and stress!
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  • Profile picture of the author NewParadigm
    divsion of labor(focus) has proven far superior in manufacturing vs. multitask(one person doing many tasks)
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  • Profile picture of the author InfiniteInc
    Focus is absolutely important, without it you just can't commit everything a project needs to succeed.

    Of course once you have tasted success it becomes easier to set up that website or business to practically run itself so you can focus on something else, allowing you to effectively "multitask" multiple projects.
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  • Profile picture of the author philrich21
    Absolutely agree focus and planning are the key.
    As the famous saying goes fail to plan and plan to fail
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    • Profile picture of the author webgal1985
      It depends on your experience. Some people have been doing this a long time, and have the experience to multitask successfully. Others are just starting out, and need to work on one project at a time and celebrate the small victories along the way.
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  • Profile picture of the author malcsimm
    I think it's a combination, really. Do your projects, but do them in blocks of 2-3 hours, then you chunk your way through them. Just don't do 20 minutes on this one, then 20 minutes on that one.

    You have to track what you are doing now and next, but that's where a good time management method comes in. And we're all trying to perfect that!

    M
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    Getting Things Done PLUS Evernote turned my life around - read here how I do it
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  • Profile picture of the author Heart Cardio
    It depends on what you are up for. Some people can only do one thing at a time or else everything suffers. Others can do 10 projects at once and still have time for something else. It is something that needs to be decided on by the person that is doing it. Everyone is different and no one way is right for everyone.
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  • I've read that a small amount of uninterrupted time of focus is better, than a longer period multi-tasking. I must agree seems to be that way for me too.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Singletary
    On the one hand we shouldn't bite off more than we can chew.

    But on the other hand if we have so much focus on one thing to the detriment of other equally important things we may become unbalanced. For example, I may be a raging success at work because of my drive and determination and focus but lose my marriage because I don't have multiple goals.

    Doing things in chunks of time works well for many people but you have to really focus during that time on that one thing.

    If you set aside an hour a day to reach your goal of losing 20 pounds and 2 hours a day to help you reach your goal of increasing income and 1 hour a day to help you reach your goal of better communication with your children, why can't you have multiple big goals all going at the same time?

    Mark
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