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094: The ONE thing with Jay Papasan

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Are you a great multitasker? 

Are you sure about that? After all, it’s impossible to think about two different things simultaneously (I am a former brain surgeon, I know).

So, what does it mean to be a multitasker anyway? Well, I think most people loosely define this term as being able to get a bunch of stuff done at the same time.

But for those of us who do get a lot of stuff done at once are we multitasking or do we just have good time management skills?

I have to tell you that I have always fancied myself a great multitasker as well. I have warn that badge with pride. In retrospect, however, I’m not really at my best when I multitask. I’m at my best when I “serial task”.

In recent years, I have started to realize that multitasking might actually be SLOWING me down.

How many times have you been working on something, shifted your thoughts to work on something else, and then come back to the original project—all within a few minutes? Do you not think that you are losing some efficiency when you transition your brain from one task to the other?

Of course you are. It’s inefficient. You are losing precious time and energy. In fact, I have come to HATE the idea of multitasking. I still find myself doing it sometimes and it drives me crazy!

Not only does it make you less efficient, but it also lends itself to what Zen Buddhists call “monkey mind”—the tendency of thoughts in your head to fling around like drunken monkeys jumping up and down and chattering nonstop. 

Do you really think this is a good psychological state to be in? I don’t.

Recently, I read a book from a guy by the name of Jay Papasan—he has cowritten several books with Gary Keller of Keller Williams fame.

The book is called, The One Thing, and really crystalized for me what I had suspected all along. Multitasking is not good.

In fact, it’s actually a consequence of simply not understanding what is important for you to get done in the first place.

Multitasking is a bandaid for poor time management skills. And, if you want to underachieve in life, keep multitasking.

Don’t get me wrong, there is certainly ways of getting multiple things done in short period of time, but there is a way to do it that will take your productivity to the next level.

The One Thing is the best book I read last year because it defines what creates that increased level of productivity.

Make sure to tune in to this week’s Wealth Formula Podcast where I interview author Jay Papasan. This conversation was extremely thought provoking. Don’t miss it!


[00:07] Introduction

[07:49] Buck introduces Jay Papasan

[09:00] The motivation to write The One Thing

[12:12] Common mistakes to setting goals and prioritizing work

[16:25] The Myth of Multitasking

[23:44] Meditation

[25:09] The art of saying NO

[32:00] A straight line to achieving your ultimate mission in life

[37:30] Learn more about Jay – theonething.com

[40:19] Outro