Single Tasking

In today’s busy world its easy to feel we never have the time to do everything. There are never enough hours in the day, days in the week to get through everything in our in-boxes.

A remarkably simple and effective approach to resolving this is single tasking. By focusing all our attention on completing one task at a time, giving it 100% of our attention, we can actually be so much more productive. I’m surprised at just how much I can achieve on the days I practice single tasking.

It’s an approach that we can all benefit from, but for students who are just starting out, learning good time management/self management skills and techniques will help them not only in their studies, but in the future. These are transferrable skills they can take with them into their future careers.

I’m not going to advise on how to single task. Instead, I’m sharing a post by Dr Rob Sheehan which outlines simple, easy to follow steps.

How do you manage your time? Do you use or have you tried single tasking? What tips would you share with students/someone starting out on their careers today?

I hope you’ve found this post interesting. If you want to get notifications of future tips and advice, please subscribe to my blog.


  1. Good post Brenda! I think I have always been a “single tasker” – which is not easy as you pointed out in this world. I find with multi-tasking I feel like I’m just spinning plates, and eventually they are going to come crashing down on my head. That has happened to me enough times that I’ve embraced to art of delegation – not a option for students. I love checking things off – especially things I have to get done that I really don’t want to do. Every time I check something off I feel motivated to tackle the next task. I think this is ideal for students because it allows you to really measure how much time it takes to complete things, and with discipline, ultimately allow you to develop time management based on your strengths.

  2. Thats a really good point, too, for students. They need to learn how long tasks may take, so planning and scheduling will improve their awareness.

    Thanks for posting Lex

  3. Nice post, Brenda! When I worked in an office, I would set mini goals to have something done by a certain time or day. Since I’ve retired, most of that has gone out of the window, however, I wake up every morning with some sort of goal to accomplish during the day.

    • I find the problem is if I don’t set those milestones the time expands and I don’t get beyond the first task.

      I can imagine that in retirement it becomes more important to have some sort of objective each day. I find that with our long summer holidays,or I’m left wondering where did those 6 weeks go

  4. I haven’t tried this, but will. I’m guilty of sometimes taking a bite of everything and finishing nothing. I suspect it will feel strange at first, but nothing to lose by trying! An interesting read.

  5. I’d love to hear how you get on Helen. I must admit I think by nature I’m a bit the way you described. As the article in the link suggests, just doing 25/30 minutes is a good way to start. And when you’re really focused and know you just have that short time, its amazing how much you can actually get done with focus.

  6. I’m actually trying to develop a single-tasking mind. It’s so hard in the day of the internet, where a welcome break is just a click away. But yeah, getting into this mindset allows me to blast through my tasks, no matter how hard they are. And half-assing my work does the opposite effect, which I sadly do a lot of. Thanks for this reminder and the link!

  7. Youre welcome Stuart. I’m going to really need to apply this myself today , and for the rest of this week as I’ve got marking to do with a very short turnaround.

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