Disconnecting Distraction|保持专注

Note: The strategy described at the end of this essay didn’t work. It would work for a while, and then I’d gradually find myself using the Internet on my work computer. I’m trying other strategies now, but I think this time I’ll wait till I’m sure they work before writing about them.

May 2008

Procrastination feeds on distractions. Most people find it uncomfortable just to sit and do nothing; you avoid work by doing something else.
分心会导致拖延。很多人在无所事事的时候感到不自在,人们通过做些其他的事情来避开工作。

So one way to beat procrastination is to starve it of distractions. But that’s not as straightforward as it sounds, because there are people working hard to distract you. Distraction is not a static obstacle that you avoid like you might avoid a rock in the road. Distraction seeks you out.
所以战胜拖延的一个办法就是消除分心的事物。但是可没那么简单,因为很多人都在努力让你分心。分心不是一成不变的障碍,你不可能像避开马路上的石头那样避开分心的事物。分心的事物会自己找上门来。

Chesterfield described dirt as matter out of place. Distracting is, similarly, desirable at the wrong time. And technology is continually being refined to produce more and more desirable things. Which means that as we learn to avoid one class of distractions, new ones constantly appear, like drug-resistant bacteria.
Chesterfield把摆放不当的东西称为垃圾。同样,在错误的时间出现的欲望就是分心。科技的不断进步带来了越来越多的分心事物。也就是说当我们学会避免一些分心事物的时候,总会有新的分心事物出现,就好比是抗药细菌一样。

Television, for example, has after 50 years of refinement reached the point where it’s like visual crack. I realized when I was 13 that TV was addictive, so I stopped watching it. But I read recently that the average American watches?4 hours?of TV a day. A quarter of their life.
比如电视,经过50年的不断改进,电视已经成为一种视觉毒品。我在13岁的时候意识到看电视会上瘾,就不再看电视了。但是我最近从书上看到普通美国人每天看四个小时的电视。人一生的四分之一的时间啊。
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