Search Results for: focus

Why We Focus on Trivial Things: The Bikeshed Effect

April 20, 2020

Bikeshedding is a metaphor to illustrate the strange tendency we have to spend excessive time on trivial matters, often glossing over important ones. Here’s why we do it, and how to stop. *** How can we stop wasting time on unimportant details? From meetings at work that drag on forever without achieving anything to weeks-long […]


Focused and Diffuse: Two Modes of Thinking

October 14, 2019

Our brains employ two modes of thinking to tackle any large task: focused and diffuse. Both are equally valuable but serve very different purposes. To do your best work, you need to master both. *** As she lost consciousness of outer things…her mind kept throwing up from its depths, scenes, and names, and sayings, and […]


Focusing is an Art, Not a Science

March 14, 2017

Productivity is all the rage. People want to get more done in less time. Productivity systems abound: Getting Things Done, Pomodoro, the Seinfeld thing, etc. There’s certainly something to be said for each of them. But have you thought about something a little simpler and more basic: How to focus? Like, really how to focus […]


Charlie Munger on Getting Rich, Wisdom, Focus, Fake Knowledge and More

February 20, 2017

“In the chronicles of American financial history,” writes David Clark in The Tao of Charlie Munger: A Compilation of Quotes from Berkshire Hathaway’s Vice Chairman on Life, Business, and the Pursuit of Wealth, “Charlie Munger will be seen as the proverbial enigma wrapped in a paradox—he is both a mystery and a contradiction at the same […]


Focusing Illusions

September 16, 2015

My favorite chapter in the book Rapt: Attention and the Focused Life by Winifred Gallagher is called ‘Decisions: Focusing Illusions.’ It’s a really great summary of how focusing on the wrong things affects the weights we use to make decisions. There is a lot of great content packed into this chapter but I’ll attempt to […]


Winifred Gallagher On Living a Focused Life

July 01, 2015

“The American dream is no longer just to get rich quick, but also to enjoy doing it, the new captains of industry offer various best-selling decalogue for achieving this goal. Their tips range from philosophical (learn from your failures) to the practical (never handle the same piece of paper twice). There’s one insight into both […]