Friday, April 11, 2014

You're Waking Up Wrong

LYST CEO Chris Morton used to start his days just like that. He hated it, but found it too addictive to not do. That is, until he read about B.F. Skinner's famous rat experiments, which varied feeding times to determine how the animals formed habits. When feeding intervals were randomized, the rats didn't know when to expect food, so they constantly checked to see if they could get pellets. (In the experiment, the rats pressed a bar for new food.) "These rats did nothing else but press these buttons all day long because they couldn't discern a pattern," Morton told Fast Company. This is essentially the same relationship we have with our email, he realized: open up the inbox, you never know what you'll get. Morton isn't the first to compare us to Skinner's rats. But making the connection has helped him realize that changing his habits could improve his day. "We don't actually do the important things we need to do in our lives because we are obsessively checking," he explained. more

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