OK, if you insist on multitasking …
A lot of recent advice says multitasking is a productivity killer. While that may be true for some, others seem to actually function best with multiple balls in the air. If giving up multitasking isn’t an option for you, heed these suggestions from career multitaskers:
Use your digital calendar and alerts wisely. While it’s great to note meetings and events, you can also set alerts to start projects rather than just noting deadlines. Use your calendar to section off chunks of your day for specific items.
Minimize paper. When you have a document in your hand, immediately file it away, put it in an “action needed” folder or throw it away. Digitize as much as you can, and don’t let paper pile up and clutter your space.
Automate repeated tasks. If there are certain forms, payments or documents that you have to deal with on a regular basis, look into whether there are apps and spreadsheets that will make it easy to autopopulate the process. Use Dropbox or other software to provide quick access to documents that you need to reference frequently.
Take breaks. Get up and walk around once in a while to clear your head. When you’re multitasking, your brain is going to be working hard to process a lot of information. Give it a chance to catch up.
Set limits on how much you’re willing to do at once. If you try to take on everything at once, you’ll end up with 20 open windows on your computer and nothing accomplished. Choose two or three things to concentrate on at one time.
— Adapted from “Game-Changing Multitasking Tips from People Who Work 80-Hour Weeks,” Jillian Kramer, Glassdoor.