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Juggling Instant Gratification

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In today’s world, are their any viable options to multitasking? We have become quite adept at juggling projects, emails, phone calls, and social media in our daily lives. Much research has been conducted, and many studies have come to the conclusion that multitasking lessens one’s overall effectiveness. David Silverman, in his essay “In Defense of Multitasking” presents and opposing side to this contention. Silverman, a Harvard Business Review blogger, goes so far as to likening our seemingly primal need to multitask to our necessity to breathe air (539). While it may not prove to be as vital as oxygen, Silverman demonstrates how crucial it is for the workplace.

Silverman acknowledges the productivity potential of ‘unitasking’, as focusing on one undertaking at a time allows for quality results (537). Furthermore, there is understanding and acceptance of the research showing a dip in our personal productivity when multitasking (537). Our personal approach to tasks has historically been singularly dedicated, as it also has mirrored our computer technology. In recent years, modern technology has made processes multi-dimensional with the abilities to handle multiple inputs all at once (537).

Multitasking allows the needs of others and not just oneself to be attended to at a given moment. Silverman describes how effectiveness is optimized when an issue arises, and support can be applied at the moment when it is needed and without delay (538). He goes on, suggesting there are instances when a great deal of time should be dedicated to a particularly difficult task, but there is also benefit in partaking in other activities and responsibilities and then coming back to the task later on with a clear head (539). Silverman also contends that there is less opportunity to opt for ‘unitasking’ when in a high position in the workplace. Responsibility and accountability is essential, thus, multitasking is a integral part of the role (539).

Developing the best strategy to complete tasks in the most productive and effective manner possible is what is wanted. Task completion and organization should be heightened, and multitasking may be the correct path for productivity (538).

Personally, I believe circumstance and situation deems the need for either ‘unitasking’ or multitasking. Certain jobs need pure dedication, and other jobs can be successful while done in tandem with other tasks. Focus is necessary, regardless as to how that focus is handled. In today’s world of instant access, instant gratification, and instant information – we can’t lose our desire for our output to be of solid quality. I do feel I am more effective when I am multitasking, but will most definitely take the time to assess if I am truly as productive and as balanced as I think I am.

Work Cited
Silverman, David. “In Defense of Multitasking” Successful College Writing:
Skills, Strategies, Learning Styles. Ed. Kathleen McWhorter. 5th ed. Boston:
Bedford, 2008. 537-539. Print.

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