The Life of a “Sophisticated Sloth”


About a week ago Greg Morse wrote an article entitled “The Subtle Way to Waste Your Life.” In it he challenges readers about being what he calls “a sophisticated sloth.”

What hid this realization from me for so long is that I never thought of myself as slothful. I get things done. At times, I’ve worked very hard. No one would have looked at me and said I sleep too much, or that I neglected my studies, or that I put off difficult things indefinitely. But looking back, I have realized in my work life that I have lived too often as a sophisticated sloth.

He describes sophisticated sloth as someone who rejects laziness, but ends up wasting far too much time.

This leads to his sharing four major time-wasters

  1. Slow to Begin
  2. Quick to Break
  3. Open to Interruptions
  4. and Puts Off Harder Work

Reading this article is incredibly convicting for me because it shows the difference between being busy, and using our time wisely.

Spending time wisely means focusing on effectiveness and efficiency (getting things done as quickly as possible) instead of activity. It’s one thing to finish a job, it’s another to finish it in a productively focused way. Or as Greg Morse puts it, “How many hours have I wasted ‘getting in the mood’ to start something difficult?

The word this post brings to my mind is “distracted”, and sadly it describes my life far too much. And while a distracted life isn’t as bad as a lazy life that doesn’t attempt anything, it’s not much better.


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