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如何完成你讨厌的任务?

更新时间:2017/10/18 11:18:07 来源:本站原创 作者:佚名

A unique way to get work done
如何完成你讨厌的任务?

What’s that one thing you really should get done, but keep putting off?

你有没有碰到过这种情况:明明应该尽快做完某件事情,但你却不停地推迟?

We all have them: time-consuming, or difficult chores we dread, procrastinate about, and drag out until the last minute – if we complete them at all.

面对这些费时费力、无聊乏味的事情,我们都会心怀恐惧,拖延逃避,直到最后一分钟才勉强完成——如果你真的能完成的话。

But what if we could tempt ourselves into those dreary tasks by pairing them with something we really enjoy? Research suggests that combining the things we want to do, with the things we should do, could be a nifty trick to tackling our goals.

但如果能将这些枯燥乏味的任务与我们喜欢的事情配成一对,通过这种方法来引诱自己,会有怎样的结果呢?研究表明,把我们喜欢的事情与不得不做的事情结合起来,就能成为一种帮助我们达成目标的实用方法。

The method is known as ‘temptation bundling’ and it allows you to simultaneously combine two differing, but complementary, activities.

这种方法被称作"诱惑捆绑"(temptation bundling),我们可以借此同时把两个有所不同但却相互补充的活动结合起来。

“I only let myself get a pedicure when I’m simultaneously doing some work or catching up, in my case, on manuscript reviews,” says Katherine Milkman, a professor of behavioural economics at The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and co-author of a study into temptation bundling. “For someone else, it might be catching up on emails or old copies of reports that need to be read for work.”

"当我要从事某些工作或紧急任务时,我会同时去做足疗。"宾夕法尼亚大学(University of Pennsylvania)沃顿商学院(The Wharton School)行为经济学教授凯瑟琳·米尔科曼(Katherine Milkman)说,"具体到我自己,这种任务就是审稿。对其他人来说,可能是处理电子邮件或者需要为了工作而阅读旧报告。"

Another example? Going to your favourite restaurant, but with a difficult colleague, or someone you’re obliged to spend time with, such as a relative. “It might also be a restaurant that’s not terribly healthy for you,” says Milkman, so you don’t overindulge too often. “Whatever it is that makes it a guilty pleasure.”

还有其他例子吗?例如跟难缠的同事或不得不陪伴的人(例如亲戚)一起去自己喜欢的餐厅。"那或许也是一家对你来说不太健康的餐厅。"米尔科曼说,这样你就不会过分放纵。"无论是什么,这都能让你获得带有负罪感的快乐。"

In short, it’s pairing a thing you like with something you don’t like, offering you incentive to do something you might be putting off.

简而言之,就是把你喜欢的事情与你不喜欢的事情配成一对,让你有动力完成原本可能推迟的事情。

Maybe it’s discussing finances on a ‘date night’ with your spouse, as suggested by personal finance author Scott Pape.

按照个人理财作家斯科特·佩普(Scott Pape)的说法,这或许意味着在跟配偶约会的晚上探讨理财问题。

Or using a treadmill desk to exercise throughout the day without harming productivity, as does Bri Williams, a leadership expert and founder of behavioural economics firm People Patterns in Melbourne, Australia.

又或者,按照领导力专家、澳大利亚墨尔本行为经济学公司People Patterns创始人布里·威廉姆斯(Bri Williams)的做法,这就意味着在不影响工作效率的情况下,一天到晚使用附带跑步机的办公桌来锻炼。

Commitment issues

承诺机制

Exercise is one activity routinely treated as a chore – so Milkman used it in an experiment to test the effectiveness of temptation bundling.

很多人都认为锻炼是一件枯燥乏味的事情——所以米尔科曼用它来测试诱惑捆绑的效果。

In her experiment, Milkman encouraged students to exercise while listening to addictive, page-turning audiobooks, such as The Hunger Games. One group, which could only access the audiobooks while at the gym, were 51% more likely to exercise than the control group, which were able to listen when they liked. Another group, whose access to the audiobooks was not restricted but who were merely encouraged to bundle the activities, were 29% more likely to exercise than the control group.

在她的实验中,米尔科曼鼓励学生一边收听像《饥饿游戏》(The Hunger Games)一样引人入胜的有声读物,一边锻炼身体。其中一组只能在健身房里获得有声读物,与可以随时随地收听有声图书的对照组相比,他们的锻炼意愿高出51%。而另外一组虽然也被鼓励把这两种活动结合起来,但仍然可以随时收听有声读物,不受任何限制,他们前去锻炼的概率也比对照组高出29%。

Although the effects of the experiment declined over time, at the end of the study 61% of participants opted to pay for gym-only access while listening to tempting audiobooks. Temptation bundling worked well enough for them to want to continue the practice.

尽管实验效果会随着时间的推移而减弱,但在研究结束时,61%的参与者还是选择花钱购买仅限于健身房使用的方案,在锻炼过程中收听引人入胜的有声读物。这说明诱惑捆绑发挥了充分的效果,使之愿意继续锻炼。

It seems to work for busier people, who have a lot get done, says Milkman.

米尔科曼表示,对于那些事务繁忙的大忙人来说,这一招似乎很有用。

It’s a type of commitment device – a formal arrangement to reach goals. For example, a reward or punishment for completing or failing to complete a task. (Think: an ice cream after a workout or money in a swear jar). But, Milkman says, temptation bundling is “very different from any commitment devices that have been written about or studied before.”

这其实是一种承诺机制——通过正式的安排来达成目标。例如,针对任务的完成与否制定奖惩计划。(试想:每次锻炼之后可以获得一个冰淇淋,或者每次说脏话后就要往脏话罐里放一笔钱)。但米尔科曼表示,"诱惑捆绑与我们之前讨论或研究的承诺机制都大不相同。"

The benefit comes from simultaneity, that is, doing two things at once that go well together, says Milkman. The trick is to find tasks that complement each other, and perhaps even work better, when combined.

米尔科曼表示,好处在于同时发生,也就是说,需要同时做两件很相配的事情。难点在于找到两个能够互补甚至相互促进的任务。

By “taking the sting out of tasks that you don't want to do, you become less likely to drop them from your busy week,” Williams says. “The secret is to bundle tasks that require different effort. For instance, if one task requires focus or concentration, you want the other not to be too distracting – reading while listening to a podcast is very difficult, for example, while cooking and listening is more realistic.”

"把你不愿做的事情变得易于接受,你就不太可能在忙碌的工作中漏掉它。"威廉姆斯说,"秘诀是把那些需要付出不同努力的工作捆绑起来。例如,一项工作需要专注,那么另一项工作就不能太分心——想要在阅读的同时收听播客是很难实现的,而一边做饭一边收听播客更为现实。"

Love/hate

爱恨交织

And the downsides?

这么做有何弊端?

Williams says there’s a risk of tainting your enjoyment of the task you like by pairing it with something unpleasant. “You may find you end up avoiding both, and binging on your temptation because you feel more virtuous. You may pair your ‘should do’ paperwork with ‘want to do’ bowl of ice cream and find you serve yourself a second helping.”

威廉姆斯表示,把喜欢的事情与讨厌的事情结合起来,可能会降低你的兴致。"到头来,你可能发现你对两件事情都持逃避态度,而且会因为道德感增强而沉溺于诱惑之中。你可能会把'应该做'的文书工作跟'喜欢做'的吃冰淇淋配对,结果却发现自己多吃了一份冰淇淋。"

And, could bundling make us hate the things we love? Possibly, says Milkman. It depends how aversive the task is.

这种捆绑是否会令我们憎恨自己喜欢的事情呢?米尔科曼认为的确有这种可能。具体情况取决于你对这项任务有多么反感。

“The possibility is very real that if you push this too far, it will fall apart. We’ve only tested in the middle of the distribution in terms of things that are unpleasant,” says Milkman. “So, it’s an open question. We need more research to answer.”

"很有可能出现这种情况:如果你做得太过分,捆绑就会失效。以令人不快的事情来看,我们只是在整体过程的中间阶段展开测试。"米尔科曼说,"所以说,这个问题仍然有待探讨,我们还需要开展更多研究才能给出答案。"

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