Multitasking and Writing: Benefits and Drawbacks (Other than a Migraine)

October 11th, 2012

Benefits
Honestly, I believe that the benefits of multitasking outweigh the drawbacks at a rate of about ten to one. Since exercise is important, but so is catching up on the daily news, I choose to pedal on a stationary bicycle while watching the stock ticker scroll by. This is not revolutionary; I understand that. There are, however, other moments that can be maximized through multitasking.

Some people see writing each day as a chore to be dreaded. Like mowing the yard as a child, just the mention of the task can cause a cringe to run up the spine. Just like childhood, however, there exists no reason to avoid making the task more enjoyable. Listening to music, audiobooks, and simply snacking on healthy foods can be great ways to multitask while writing.

Things like Facebook and online browsing, however, are not good multitasking options.

Drawbacks
The drawbacks of multitasking can be debated until the 24 hours in the day we do have are over. Medical studies, personal preference, and pet peeves are all reasons some simply choose not to multitask. If you love writing, listening to music or sipping on some cold water might not be necessary. Sometimes, the addition of a stimulant can be stressful.

Multitasking while writing can help maintain focus and avoid burnout, but multitasking while editing is almost always a bad idea. Translation services such as OneHourTranslation require a focus that multitasking is likely to damage. Losing any moment of focus can be incredibly damaging to an editing or translating session, so try to tone down the ambidextrous tasks that lend themselves to multitasking. With too many tasks at hand and too little energy, headaches and stress can build up to a fever pitch.

Avoiding the Migraines
To avoid the migraines and stresses that stem from over stimulation and multitasking, be sure to search for what works for you. Listening to music might be just too distracting for a more deliberate writer, and a food break might turn into a meal for the more hungry among us (that would include me). Don't try to match or surpass anyone's pace but your own.

Searching for a few more hours in the day is a tale as old as time itself. With intelligent coupling of tasks, however, individuals are able to free up schedules and time to finish projects and spend quality time with loved ones. Writing and multitasking is not for everyone, but some greatly benefit from the freedom of melding several tasks together. Find what works for you. Add a couple of hours to your day.

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