08 April 2006

Attention Deficit Trait

Why Can't You Pay Attention Anymore?

Dr. Edward Hallowell, in CNET News.com, discusses "attention deficit trait," which ironically results from a sort of "brain overload" from today's onslaught of e-mail, Blackberry notices, phone calls, etc. He reports that it results in a loss of strategic thinking and a tendency to answer only the superficial aspects of questions.

"It's sort of like the normal version of attention deficit disorder. But it's a condition induced by modern life, in which you've become so busy attending to so many inputs and outputs that you become increasingly distracted, irritable, impulsive, restless and, over the long term, underachieving. In other words, it costs you efficiency because you're doing so much or trying to do so much, it's as if you're juggling one more ball than you possibly can."

(found, as usual, from Lifehacker.com)



RLB said...

I totally feel that way these days. I never used to experience anything resembling AD(H)D, but now, if I'm trying to read, say, a news article online, I get impatient before getting to the end, or think of something else I wanted to do online -- check the Red Sox score, finish a draft email, whatever. Same thing at work -- I'll spend five minutes on one task before feeling restless and the urge to switch to something else. I hate the feeling but haven't figured out how to stay focused on one thing at a time. And it's definitely a recent development.

TroopOfChimps said...

I'd argue against this, but I'm too busy figuring out my new cell phone.