While there’s not a strict right or wrong time to multitask or monotask, there are benefits for both and it’s helpful to understand them before diving into your tasks for the day.
Improves focus as you're only thinking about the task in front of you. This is extremely helpful if you have to write an important email or report. Especially if you work in a creative field and you’re in a good flow.
Tick bigger tasks off your to do list quicker. If you’re working on a larger task that may take a few hours, you’re likely to get it done quicker when your focus isn’t being pulled from it. This may mean you can tick the item off on the same day you started it.
You know what the priority is. It’s far easier to identify what your priority is because it’s the only task you’re working on. You’ve dedicated time to it because it’s already of importance.
Make progress on multiple tasks in a short time. This may make you feel very productive if you have clear objectives, and don’t get carried away on the wrong tasks.
Helps combat stress and overwhelm in a busy and fast paced environment. E.g. Walking meetings: the meeting is done, but you’ll also feel better after moving your body and getting some fresh air. Maybe you’ll even triple task and walk to your next destination for the day.
You may develop ways to not get distracted. If you have multiple things that need to be done at the same time, you’re less likely to be distracted, and more likely to get the job done.
While there are benefits to both, it’s important that you choose the right one for your day and the tasks you have to do. If there’s something you really need to focus on, give monotasking a go. Block out time in your calendar and try not to let other tasks sneak in. Although, if you have a lot of smaller or more urgent tasks that need to be tackled at the same time, multitasking may be your best friend.