Over the next few weeks I’m going to post some information on Batching Tasks. If you’re not already doing this, I highly recommend it. Batching tasks has the potential to increase the quality of our work while doing so with less effort… seems like a no-brainer, right?
Why Batch Tasks?
Your brain works to efficiently group similar things together. Whether these are activities, tasks, ideas… the list goes on. Multi-tasking is a concept that anyone who wants to be more efficient and spend more time actually living their lives needs to completely block from their brain. Multi-tasking doesn’t work. When you group similar tasks together, your brain doesn’t have to switch gears every few minutes, therefore saving time you were previously loosing when you were priming your brain to think on a completely different level.
Checking our email every few minutes is a great [sometimes fun] distraction – but absolutely un-productive. By batching tasks together that we perform every day/week/month the quality of our work increases and we can do those things in less time, with less effort.
Email has the tendency to eat up the most significant amount of time during the day. It can get us completely off-track, distracted or sucked in to something new. Instead of constantly refreshing your email, check it in pre-determined blocks of time throughout the day. See below:
Importantly, use two of these blocks of time to specify the tasks even further. The by-product is a higher level of organization
- Check and respond to your email 4 times a day in 15 minute blocks.
- First 15 Minute Block: Delete emails and quick respond to others
- Last 15 Minute Block: Delete emails, quick respond to others and categorize anything important from the day
You may be thinking, “My clients/boss/colleagues expect an immediate response.” It’s funny how organizing a task like this can make those responses which are needed immediately suddenly a little less immediate.
If you are a truly concerned, The Wonder Jam advocates adding a sentence to your signature along these lines:
“I check my email 4 times throughout the day. Here’s why. If you need to reach me immediately, please call me at 555-555-5555″
* Think about using this tactic for Instagram, or Tinder, or reading your favorite daily website. It would give you so much more time to actually LIVE your life.