Thoughts on lasting longer: a modern attention span

[media-credit name=”Genevieve Winn” align=”alignnone” width=”300″]lily-edit[/media-credit]

Think you can make it to the bottom line of this article? Microsoft is skeptical… and so am I.

My guess is you have made it to here. But if you are literate, it’s probably been less than eight seconds.

According to an article written by Lizette Borrelli of Medical Daily, a study by Microsoft found that “people now generally lose concentration after eight seconds,” which is less than a goldfish’s attention span of nine seconds according to the New York Times.

Microsoft’s study involved the use of electroencephalograms to monitor brain activity while different experimental groups interacted with various forms of media.

Brain activity sensors were hooked up to each participant, and their brain activity was mapped at the same time that each participant’s screen interaction activity was recorded. Results were shocking, especially compared to a similar study done in 2000 that concluded an average attention span of 12 seconds.

What’s worse is that researchers also noticed a distinct generational gap. Borelli reports, “77 percent of people aged 18 to 24 responded ‘yes’ when asked ‘When nothing is occupying my attention, the first thing I do is reach for my phone,’ compared with only 10 percent of those over age 65.”

I am going to teach you a very important equation that I learned from my mother at a young age: money equals power.

How to obtain money? Knowledge.

How to obtain knowledge? Attention.

According to the New York Times, Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, agrees with this sentiment. “‘The true scarce commodity’ of the future,” Nadella said, “will be ‘human attention.’”

And if power is not what you seek, don’t worry, this article isn’t exclusive! Without focus, you probably won’t be able to find love and connection either. Why learn the ins and outs of another human when you can just swipe right?

It’s applicable to anything, really. Any skill set you wish to acquire is a lost cause without invested time. Haven’t you read “Outliers” by Malcolm Gladwell?

No. Of course you haven’t, you damn millennial.

It seems no one can resist the forbidden Apple. From Eve to the 21st century, we just can’t learn.

But anyway, since you have made it this far, I offer this token of knowledge: If you ever want to keep the attention of an empowered female like myself, you’d better last longer than eight seconds.