OUTWORK Everyone By Being Bored | Summary and Q&A

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January 20, 1970
by
Elijah Oxford
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OUTWORK Everyone By Being Bored

TL;DR

Boredom can be utilized as a tool to incentivize productivity, with studies showing that people would rather electrocute themselves than be bored. Deep work is becoming increasingly valuable in our economy, but constant stimulation from distractions hinders our ability to focus and think clearly.

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Questions & Answers

Q: How does boredom incentivize productivity?

Boredom can incentivize productivity because sitting idly becomes uncomfortable and borderline painful, incentivizing individuals to choose work over doing nothing. In a study, participants willingly chose to electrocute themselves rather than endure boredom, demonstrating the power of boredom as an incentive.

Q: What is deep work?

Deep work refers to the ability to focus without distractions on cognitively demanding tasks. It is becoming increasingly valuable in our economy as it allows individuals to produce high-quality work and achieve better outcomes.

Q: How do distractions affect our productivity?

Distractions, such as checking emails or switching between tasks, lead to poor performance and hinder our ability to achieve deep work. It takes up to 30 minutes for the mind to regain focus after each distraction, resulting in decreased productivity and concentration.

Q: Why is constant stimulation detrimental to our development?

Constant stimulation, such as video games and social media, keeps us trapped in a "Comfortably Numb" state and hinders our ability to think clearly. Lack of boredom and constant stimulation prevents the flow of novel ideas and inhibits personal development.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Research demonstrates that people would rather choose productivity than endure boredom, highlighting its potential as an incentive for work.

  • Boredom can be utilized as a tool to increase focus and productivity, as sitting idly becomes uncomfortable and work becomes more stimulating.

  • Distractions, such as checking emails, lead to poor performance and hinder the ability to achieve deep work.

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