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Is Laziness the Secret to Success? Scientists Say Yes, with a Twist!

In a counterintuitive twist, recent scientific studies suggest that laziness might actually be a catalyst for success, though not in the ways you might expect. Before you hand in your resignation, let’s explore this intriguing concept further.

The traditional view of success often conjures images of relentless hard work and burning the midnight oil. However, a new school of thought is emerging, backed by psychological research, which proposes that strategic laziness can be key to achieving more with less effort.

One study from the University of Kansas suggests that individuals who exhibit “intelligent laziness”—an ability to prioritise and focus on impactful activities while delegating or skipping less critical tasks—often climb the corporate ladder faster than their more dogged peers. This approach allows them to conserve energy and engage deeply where it counts most, thereby enhancing creativity and decision-making.

Moreover, laziness can foster innovation. History is ripe with examples where a desire to avoid hard work led to groundbreaking inventions. Consider the dishwasher, created by Josephine Cochrane in 1886, driven by her aversion to manual dishwashing. Her invention not only saved personal time but also revolutionised kitchen design worldwide.

However, embracing laziness does not mean shirking all responsibilities. It’s about smarter, not harder, work. For instance, Bill Gates famously said he would always “hire a lazy person to do a difficult job” because “they will find an easy way to do it.” This epitomises the power of lazy efficiency—finding the simplest and most effective path to accomplish a goal.

 

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