Researchers agree that focusing on one task at a time is more effective than multitasking. The best way to focus is to “work for long blocks of time without any interruptions,” says mental trainer and writer Patrik Edblad on Better Humans.
Another research published in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes supports this as it suggests that the next task suffers when people move away from an unfinished task to another. It further indicates that it’s not enough that the person finishes one task before moving to another. To be able to ensure higher performance on the next task, there has to be an element of time pressure when completing the previous task.
In sports, University of San Francisco professor Jim Taylor, Ph.D. suggests identifying your focus style as an athlete. The two types of focus styles according to him are internal focus style, where athletes perform best when they’re entirely and consistently focused on their sport during practices or competitions and external focus style, when athletes perform their best when they focus on the sport when they’re about to begin competing or performing a drill during a practice.
The process of identifying your focus style involves “knowing how you focus best and actively focusing in a way that is consistent with your focus style.” For athletes, he adds that focus is the ability to attend to internal and external cues in your attentional field, which includes everything inside and outside of you on which you could focus.
Three-time world surfing champion Carissa Moore focuses on her breath and the moment when things get challenging for her. For her training routine, she focuses on training around core strength, agility, speed and cardio.