The Atlantic

Why Are People So Unproductive in Short Windows of Time?

Who knows where the last hour went.
Source: Carlos Barria / Reuters

Have you ever decided to take the next hour before you have to go to get something done, and then mysteriously failed to accomplish anything? If so, you're not alone. This phenomenon, when knowing that the available time has a limit keeps you from using it to its fullest, is the subject of a in the . Through a series of eight different experiments, performed not just in labs but also in an airport’s waiting areas, the researchers

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Atlantic

The Atlantic7 min readTech
It’s a Winner-Take-All World, Whether You Like It or Not
Not long ago, I reached out to a writer I respect, and posed the uncomfortable question authors find themselves forced to ask: Would she write a blurb—the endorsement you see on the back cover—for my new book about how a person can navigate a career
The Atlantic10 min read
This Isn’t Going According to Plan for Kirsten Gillibrand
The senator from New York is a battle-tested campaigner who thrives as the underdog. But 2020 is proving to be a much tougher challenge than she thought.
The Atlantic4 min readPsychology
Dear Therapist: The Child My Daughter Put Up for Adoption Is Now Rejecting Her
She thought that her daughter would want to meet her one day. Twenty-five years later, that’s not true.