Working Under Pressure


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Some people say that they are better and more efficient workers when they are running up against their deadline. Some others specifically save their work until as late as they possibly safely can because they feel that they won't be distracted and will be able to work more efficiently. But is there a science behind this?

In a great article, researcher Ari Putkonen disagrees with this theory, and says that although some people may feel that they are more productive when they have a tight window to work with, Dr. Putkonen says that productivity levels are actually down than from that of a normally planned out project. He also says that timing pressure also leads to delayed mental fatigue, which can cause the brain to deteriorate and become less effective over longer periods of time. By putting things off until the last minute, we get into bad habits which cause the brain to constantly believe that you are working under pressure, which will put added and unnecessary stress on the brain at times where you are not under pressure and the stress is not needed.

These factors contribute to the overall innovativeness of the mind. Mental fatigue, caused by constantly working under stress, decreases creativity, delays the thought processes, and generally makes the person working less effective. So, don't save these blogs for the last day like this one next blog period!

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3 Comments

I found this article interesting because sometimes I personally think that I work better under pressure. However, this blog has led me to believe that I probably don't work better under pressure. It makes sense that pressure effects your creativity and makes creating clear , cohesive ideas much more difficult

I liked this article because i used to be one of those people that left things to the last day to finish, and i would think that would help me. However, i would notice that i would just rush because i was stressed and just wanted to get it done. that caused my work to not be the best it could be. I agree with it that if you do that it will cause a bad habit because i had that bad habit for a long time and it took me a while to break that habit.

I am one to procrastinate, so this article was definitely insightful for me. I can see how getting in the habit of waiting til the last minute could have averse effects. As mentioned with the stress or even with the quality of the work itself. This may be a little different than what is being mentioned here, but I remember learning about being under pressure in tight situations especially related to sports. You might find this article interesting http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2012/09/study-athletes-perform-better-under-pressure-when-they-make-a-fist-with-their-left-hand/262605/ The interesting thing in this article mentions that athletes can perform better by simply clinching their left fist. This is because the nervous portion of the brain is in the left hemisphere. It makes me wonder if doing this during tests will help, at least when it comes to things that one has done before and not novel unstudied things

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