Monday, 5 October 2009

Paul Rozin: Time management

I generally believe that we learn from experience. However, a recent study I did with Karlene Hanko repeats a finding from Kahneman and Snell, that people are very poor at predicting how their liking will change for a new product (in our case, two new foods and two new body products) after using it for a week. We predicted that the parents of our college undergraduates would be better than their children at predicting their hedonic trajectory, but 25 more years of self experience did nothing for them. Nor for me. Every night, I bring home a pile of work to do in the evening and early morning. I have been doing this for over 50 years. I always think I will actually get through all or most of it, and I almost never get even half done. But I keep expecting to accomplish it all. What a fool I am.

Paul Rozin is Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania where he also acts as co-director of the school's Solomon Asch Center for the Study of Ethnopolitical Conflict.

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1 comment:

  1. Anonymous1:50 am

    I too deal with this issue. Now age 62, I still make assessments as to the time required to accomplish a particular task in a manner that totally excludes, any negative assumptions – after all one never knows what negative impacts might arise - so I plan with the data set that I will have the full complement of: adequate time, be fully rested – yet suitably coffeed-up, no distractions, and an ambitious attitude.

    Though this circumstance has only occurred 2-3 times in my life, these few moments absolute prductive bliss have reinforced a always-be-prepared montra that causes me to haul whatever I might need with me where ever I go.

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