The Most Important Skill of the Future is Being ‘Indistractable’

Nir Eyal:

I know how distractions work from the inside. For over a decade, I’ve helped tech companies build products to keep you clicking. In fact, I wrote the book about it in 2014: Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products. I wrote Hooked for companies who wanted to help their customers build healthy habits, like going to the gym regularly and eating right. But in the process of researching the book, I found that some products drew some people in too much, including me.

I remember sitting with my daughter one afternoon doing activities from a book written to help daddies and daughters bond. One exercise consisted of asking each other the following question: “If you could have any superpower, what would it be?” Between the moment I asked the question and when my daughter could answer, I felt a buzz in my pocket. A work email diverted my attention.

“Daddy?” she queried.

“Just a second,” I grunted. “I need to respond to one thing.” My eyes were glued to my phone, my fingers were tapping away at a response.