Remember the 40-hour workweek? | Cypress Semiconductor
Remember the 40-hour workweek?
September 11, 2010
In the afterglow of Labor Day weekend and the lazy days of summer, I found an interesting mini-program on NPR's Future Tense with the title above (futuretense.publicradio.org/episode/index.php). This short audio program talks with Maggie Johnson, author of Distracted: The Erosion of Attention and the Coming Dark Age (maggie-jackson.com/writing/), and in this as well many more resources/interviews online Ms. Jackson discusses two things mainly:
1) the "technologies" we have today can/are consuming us 24x7 (brilliant insight, right?) and the result is we are NOT ABLE to pay attention (I know I can feel like an ADHD elementary school kid some days when I let my email, etc. control my behavior), BUT
2) we CAN learn to pay attention, and there is even a new science of attention.
Coming off a 2-week vacation, I felt behind when I returned and have been spending extra time and energy to get (or feel?) caught up. And this was even after I had mostly kept my email attended to while I was gone. But vacations in the past (I had 2 weeks off in June as well) where I have tried to take a vacation from email as well, while being a good 2-week break, I REALLY ended up feeling underwater. In fact, I just worked this weekend the unread emails from my June vacation down below 1000.
There are a great many advantages to instant/always in-contact supported by our blackberries (et al) and cell phones that can reach us anywhere. And undeniably the shrinking globe and it's affect on projects and products has led to the 24-hour workday. But a friend pointed out that 40 years ago Dale Carnegie presented a seminar that addressed pretty much the exact same issue: how our workload and urgent tasks had increased due to all the advances in technology - the telephone.
So I leave you with this question (and apologize that there isn't a way to add comments below, the feature is coming soon):