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  • The Myth Of Multitasking

    How many geniuses are experts in multiple unrelated disciplines?

    Upstart: Gamchangers

    It is those who concentrate on but one thing at a time who advance in this world. The great man or woman is the one who never steps outside his or her specialty or foolishly dissipates his or her individuality.” – Og Mandino

    How many people do you know that dominate their field without specializing in a particular area? How many geniuses are experts in multiple unrelated disciplines?

    The answer is… not too man.

    Real expertise nearly always requires tenacious focus on a singular discipline.

    Focus is one of the most important elements of greatness. Obsessive focus is also necessary to take that greatness to the heights it’s capable of attaining.

    There is always the temptation to multi-task, “diversify,” or whatever. After all, common sense tells us that it’s dangerous to put all your eggs in one basket. Shouldn’t we all work on being well-rounded people?

    The truth is that you’re “dissipating your individuality” by doing that. Mandino asserts that you are diminishing your chances at greatness by stepping outside of your specialty.

    Take a look at yourself.

    Are you dividing yourself, working on too many different projects or in too many areas? STOP!

    Confucius says “Man who chases two rabbits catches neither.”

    Find that one thing you’re truly gifted in, and focus on improving that expertise.

    Taking into consideration that obsession is a good thing when it comes to becoming an authority in any  area, here’s a very simple action plan to get you started on your way to becoming the next Mozart in your field.

    1) Determine where your genius lies. One thing at a time. This is crucial. It can be one of the hardest parts, as well. We previously noted that all the training you receive, all the advice you hear is to a)”broaden your horizons” and be a well-rounded person, and to b) multitask.

    Focus is hard work. You do not naturally do this. No one does. But “tunnel vision” is a common factor among all the greats.

    One side note here. A recent study has proven that multitasking has similar effects on overall effectiveness, quality of work, and memory retention as smoking marijuana. Think about that for a moment. Is spreading yourself thin by multitasking really worth it?

    What you focus on will depend on your unique personality and makeup. That’s not to say that you can’t break from conventional thinking like Spud Webb (honestly, who saw that one coming?).

    Your genius is something you’re passionate about. Something you have a flare for.

    2) Discipline and patience. It’s not going to be easy. Discouragement has come even to history’s brightest minds. You may feel like you’ll never get where you want to go. But you have to keep striving and practicing. If negativity comes your way, ignore it.

    Practice makes perfect. More importantly, practice makes permanent.

    In the words of Thomas Carlyle, “Genius is an infinite capacity for taking pains.”  Keep at it.

    3) Take action. Publicly. If getting started is the hardest part, then putting yourself in front of others is the scariest.

    Who wants to be an undercover genius? Not you! You’ll have to share your expertise with others. Don’t pretend to be more than you are. Don’t underestimate your ability or knowledge either. Be yourself. Be confident. Step forward in your ever-increasing ability and authority.

    Remember: action is key. If you never put into practice the gifts and talents you have, you’re selling yourself short, and you’re robbing the people around you of the benefit they might gain from your giftedness. Please don’t do that. The world needs all the greatness it can find.

    Would you rather be the go-to guy or gal, the expert in your chosen field, or the person who knows a little about everything, but not enough to be amazing at anything in particular? A jack-of-all-trades is rarely master of any.

    The choice really is yours.


    This is an adapted excerpt from Donnie’s new book, Get Limitless 2.0. Grab your copy today!

    Upstart: Business and Management for 20-40 Year Old Professionals

    Filed Under: Gamechangers


    About the Author: Donnie Bryant is a direct response copywriter and marketing consultant. He specializes in improving businesses' sales and profitability by creating compelling marketing messages and strategies. Find out more about Donnie at http://donnie-bryant.com. You can also follow him on Twitter at @donniebryant and connect with him on Google Plus at +donniebryant.

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