Multi-Tasking Can Enhance Your Performance–As Long As You’re Stressed

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Multi-tasking has been getting a lot of bad press. You’re told it’s responsible for your stress levels, bad for your brain and terrible for productivity.

Scientists have recently discovered an intriguing paradox. The very feature that makes multi-tasking bad, can make multi-tasking extraordinarily good — in one precise context, stress.

The paradox

Multi-tasking interferes with decision-making because you’re not giving your brain the chance to focus for long enough on the problem. Stress harms decision-making by making your brain process information in a less rational way.

As you might expect, you make bad decisions if you’re either multi-tasking or stressed.

But not, it seems, if you’re both at the same time.

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