36 times an hour | johnstepper

Posted on by Brandon Klein

Here are some statistics:

    “Interaction workers” (professionals, managers, salespeople) spend 28% of their time reading or writing email.
    They spend another 19% of the time trying to track down information (including searching through email)
    The average number of corporate emails people send or receive each day hit 219 in 2013, an increase of 31% since just 2009, and the numbers continue to go up.
    80% of people suffer from “email apnea”, a state of shallow breathing and increased heart rate, stressing the body over prolonged periods and leading to greater irritability among other issues.
    People check their email 36 times per hour.

Of these, I find the last statistic is the most damning. There’s plenty of brain science that shows attention is a limited and precious resource. And that you expend that resource when you’re switching contexts. So if you’re constantly checking email, you simply have less capacity to pay attention and your performance degrades.

    “Those distracted by incoming email and phone calls saw a 10-point fall in their IQ – more than twice that found in studies of the impact of smoking marijuana, said researchers…Those who are constantly breaking away from tasks to react to email or text messages suffer similar effects on the mind as losing a night’s sleep.”