The "Good" kind of multitasking & the wheel of life
By now, I hope I've convinced you that at least 80% of what you would call multitasking is quite bad for your productivity. With that said there is of course that 20% that is actually quite useful to explain what I mean, I have to go on a bit of a tangent though early on in my career I was exposed to an idea called The Wheel of Life. Now the Wheel of Life is a circle with eight sections to represent how satisfied or successful you feel you are with different aspects like friends and family, personal growth, health finances, et cetera. That is a whole different subject, which I teach in a whole different course and so I'll give you a link to explore it on your own time. However, I wanted to introduce this concept because learning about the Wheel of Life introduced me to another idea, the idea that you can actually accomplish two goals at once by doing mutually productive activities. The trick here or what I call the good kind of multitasking is to look at the Wheel of life, assess the a...
reas you want to improve and then find ways to improve more than one area of your life at once. What does that mean? Well, if I want to improve my fitness while maintaining strong and healthy relationships with my friends and family, who is to say that I can't find activities that do both at once. Let me give you an example, one of my goals as I mentioned is to improve my Russian language skills. Now I could hire a tutor Sure, but that would only accomplish one goal. It would only improve one section of my wheel of life, personal growth. However, if I decide to travel to Russia with my spouse and practice with native speakers there, then it also improves my satisfaction in the funded adventure category and strengthens my relationship while simultaneously improving my Russian skills. Even better if I decide to visit friends from business school while I'm in Russia that makes four sections, all being mutually fulfilled. It gets better than that though because some activities are even better if done in conjunction with one another. Here are a few examples, learning to speak Russian in a higher stakes environment with native speakers in Russia is way more effective than learning from a textbook or tutor double dates with friends or going to a museum and learning something new with your wife, boyfriend, girlfriend and so on will improve your relationship and your friendships more than sitting on the couch and watching movies together, exercising while learning or reading actually improves your memory and brain function, listening to an interesting podcast or audiobook can keep you alert and engaged during long drives, working out with a friend or a loved one, makes you less likely to skip workouts and more likely to push yourself to the limit. Now these are just a few examples, but I think you get the idea if you want to be really productive and effective, you should try to nurture to aspects of the circle at once, but hey even I get tired and lazy. Sometimes I watch tv and silly movies on the couch by myself every so often, which doesn't really fit in line with any of my goals or improve my satisfaction in any of the sections of the wheel of life. But when I do, I can make a choice that if I'm going to relax, I need to do something productive. For example, I can stretch out my muscles because one of my goals is to improve my flexibility. I can watch the movie in spanish or in hebrew language is that I want to improve. The point is that you can always find ways to make even your downtime productive in some way shape or form and in ways that are not exhausting or emotionally draining at all. Now for this lectures homework, I want you to check out the worksheet that we've provided which includes an exercise with the wheel of life, fill it out and determine which areas of your life you want to improve. Then see how you can link up activities that are mutually productive or made better by the combination, go for a run with a good friend instead of just the dog. Try reading while you're on the exercise bike, make your next vacation, a meditation retreat in short, figure out little ways that you can use the good kind of multitasking to your benefit and make the most of your time.