How to become more productive by using 2 computers

Amir Salihefendic, founder or Todoist and Wedoist
I have a simple and neat productivity tip I want to share.

One of the things I noticed I do a lot (especially when presented with hard problems) is to procrastinate by opening my email, opening Hacker News or something similar. I think it’s a fairly common thing for most people. The problem with this is that it’s very unproductive: because the mind gets distracted, looses focus and needs to do constant context switching.

It’s also ruins Flow, a state you want to be in:

“Flow is the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity. In essence, flow is characterized by complete absorption in what one does.”

There’s a lot of scientific research on the matter that concludes that multi-tasking and constant context switching is really bad for your productivity.

“Multitasking is going to slow you down, increasing the chances of mistakes,” said David E. Meyer, a cognitive scientist and director of the Brain, Cognition and Action Laboratory at the University of Michigan. “Disruptions and interruptions are a bad deal from the standpoint of our ability to process information.”

Back to the tip! It’s really simple:

  • I have a work computer where I do work and productive things. Unproductive things are blocked on this computer.
  • I have another computer (an iPad) where I do unproductive work, such as check Hacker News, Facebook etc.
  • I process emails 3 times a day (after I am done with the emails, I block Gmail).

I have found out that this improves my productivity greatly. You should try it out.

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