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Why Zoning Out Could Help You Be More Productive

Science By
(Paul Bradbury/Creative RF/Getty Images)
(Paul Bradbury/Creative RF/Getty Images)


Whether you’re daydreaming or just straight up spacing out, the absentmindedness you experience during the day could actually be good for you. Most people view mind-wandering as a negative thing, despite it affecting all of us. In fact, we spend up to 47 percent of our waking hours in some state of it. Harvard Business Review‘s Josh Davis argues zoning out can actually improve one’s productivity. Here’s his take:

“When we turn to our devices every time we get bored or find a break in the flow of work, we keep ourselves constantly processing new information. Being ‘always on’ like this can make us less productive because it can block the brain processes that occur when we let our minds wander. Neuroscience and psychology research show that mind-wandering facilitates creativity, planning, and putting off immediate desires in favor of future rewards. Each of those can be important for working effectively. Not many other things we do can have such a broad impact.”

Read Davis’ full story in the Harvard Business Review here. Watch a video below to learn more about the science behind the absent mind.