<body><script type="text/javascript"> function setAttributeOnload(object, attribute, val) { if(window.addEventListener) { window.addEventListener('load', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }, false); } else { window.attachEvent('onload', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }); } } </script> <div id="navbar-iframe-container"></div> <script type="text/javascript" src="https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js"></script> <script type="text/javascript"> gapi.load("gapi.iframes:gapi.iframes.style.bubble", function() { if (gapi.iframes && gapi.iframes.getContext) { gapi.iframes.getContext().openChild({ url: 'https://www.blogger.com/navbar.g?targetBlogID\x3d7355966\x26blogName\x3dBerger+Blog\x26publishMode\x3dPUBLISH_MODE_BLOGSPOT\x26navbarType\x3dBLUE\x26layoutType\x3dCLASSIC\x26searchRoot\x3dhttps://berger-blog.blogspot.com/search\x26blogLocale\x3den_US\x26v\x3d2\x26homepageUrl\x3dhttp://berger-blog.blogspot.com/\x26vt\x3d907031802564846654', where: document.getElementById("navbar-iframe-container"), id: "navbar-iframe" }); } }); </script>

Berger Blog

Expanding the discussion of Generatonal issues in organizations, Leadership, and Individual & Professional Growth.

Distractions: Friend of Foe?

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

An interesting article appeared in Time Magazine two weeks ago.  It discussed the issue about the ways that cell phones, email, and the ever-present BlackBerry is changing not only how effective we are, but also the neurochemical makeup of our bodies.  

Are these simply the by-products of our multi-tasking reality of life in the big cities?  Maybe so.  For those people who are driven by the thrill of chaos, who find that the double-latte serves as a relaxant, and who absolutely have to have their headset on all the time, then maybe our current technology and trends make you feel more at home than you’ve ever been.  For the rest of us, who feel forced into this new existence, who see this stuff as the trappings of current reality, you might want to know a few things.

The authors of the article referenced a study done by Basex – a New York City based info-technology research firm – revealed that the interruptions that dot our work day consume – and I mean eat with both hands in a messy way – 28% of our workday.  More than two hours!  One-quarter of the day is spent, maybe wasted even, on interruptions.  With each interruption, it takes the average person 25 minutes to get back to what they were doing.

On top of all this, these interruptions intrusions are creating a new medical condition.  Attention-deficit trait, or ADT, looks a whole lot like its close cousin, ADD.  (Dr. Edward Hallowell, a Massachusetts-based psychiatrist gave this new condition its name in a Harvard Business Review article).  ADT hits you in situations, where the multi-tasking gets too multi.  Then comes stress, anxiety, guilt, depression, etc. etc.

So the answers?  They are different for different people.  One of the things that I’ve thought about is that the Boomers are the ones most likely to be really nailed by all of this stuff.  They, unlike the Xers and Millennials, haven’t been raised with this stuff.  As it is, my 8-year-old daughter checks her email regularly, taking her cue from her Gen X parents, so the interruptions to her aren’t the problem, they’re the norm.  Lots of others in their 20s have the same background with technology.  Nonetheless, what are we doing to help the people who need all of this and what are we doing to help all of those who are hurt by it?
posted by Michael Berger, 1:19 PM | link | 0 comments |
Free Guestbook from Bravenet.com Free Guestbook from Bravenet.com