Please Do Less: 4 Negative Consequences of Multitasking5 min read

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Multitasking kept me sick for 2 months straight. Most people ask you to work harder, to do more and more every day, but overworking yourself is unwise; you are not a robot.

What Multitasking?

Multitasking is the act of switching between tasks quickly and “efficiently”. It is often seen as a valuable skill, especially in today’s fast-paced world where we are constantly bombarded with information and demands on our time. 

However, you need to understand that you’re not some robot that can handle several tasks at a time. Although Multitasking may seem like an intuitive way to get things done, it can have negative consequences on our work and overall well-being.

Toward the end of 2022, I felt so ill and couldn’t do anything. 

“…he will get better, this is a symptom of malaria,” the nurse hypothesized. Then she ran a couple of tests and truly, she was right. 

“…aside from this, you have been overstressing lately, you should slow down a bit”  she added.

The latter words she uttered were so true. In an attempt to keep up with deadlines and achieve goals, I had been crazily multitasking. 

As a freelance writer, I would take multiple jobs with short deadlines – because I needed to gather the bucks and achieve my financial goals. But, at what cost?

You shouldn’t break down before you realize this. Many times, people get bulked with assignments, which might make them consider multitasking. As good as this may seem – as a means to get work done within short time limits – you should avoid it.

As I handled those projects within shorter periods, I felt I was growing and getting better in my craft. I would finish 4 works in a day and would want to have more. It was an interesting thing to do – getting my bulky tasks done in less than no time. If I had not experienced the breakdown, I would’ve continued – being the Mighty Multitasker. 

It is true, every individual that is capable of multitasking enjoys several work-related benefits over those who cannot. They get more jobs (which may equate to higher pay than others). However, as this proceeds, it could backfire (like I’d experienced). You should be able to draw the lines – knowing your capabilities and how much you can take – so you do not break down just like me. 

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What Are The Negative Effects of Multitasking?

Below are 4 negative consequences of multitasking learned from my ordeal.

Multitasking can decrease productivity

Although your reason for multitasking is to finish all tasks within a short period, you might end up spending more time on them in the long run. When you multitask, you are dividing your attention between multiple tasks – trying to do multiple things at once. This can lead to a decrease in the quality and speed of your work as you are not fully focused on any one task. Your brain has to switch back and forth between tasks, which makes it near impossible to truly focus or get into a state of flow which are prerequisites for speed and excellence. 

Multitasking can lead to mistakes

At some point when I was overburdened with several tasks, I began to experience rejected works (which had never happened). At first, I thought it was no problem. As time went on, I experienced even more. Then, I realized that I was doing more than I can handle.

Switching between tasks increases the likelihood of making mistakes. When you are multitasking, it is easier to overlook important details or make errors that can take longer to fix.

Multitasking can cause stress

 The constant switching between tasks can be mentally exhausting and lead to increased stress and anxiety.

During that time, I would often feel too stressed to do other things I had intended to do.

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Multitasking can lead to burnout

If you are constantly multitasking, you may find it difficult to relax and recharge, leading to burnout. The sad news about excessive burnout is that it takes a while to get back to form. 

Remember my story. It took me till the end of the year before I could recover. 

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Final note: “You Are Not A Robot”

While it is important to clarify one’s workload quickly, it is more important to have an excellent production rather than an average or low one. Add breaks to your schedules and don’t crack your table with too much work. Taking care of yourself is also important. Besides, One good product is better than ten wack ones.

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Multitasking may seem like an efficient way to get things done, but it can have negative consequences on your productivity, mental and physical health, and even relationships. It is important to be mindful of your multitasking habits and try to focus on one task at a time whenever possible

Faith Raphael is a freelance writer and editor who has years of experience in blog writing, product & page descriptions, ebook ghostwriting/publishing, and lots more…

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