Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Attention deficit trait

A colleague showed me an article on attention deficit trait, or ADT, which gave an explanation on the behaviour of the stressed executives. ADT isn't defined as an illness; it's purely a response to the hyperkinetic environment in which we live. People with ADT have difficulty staying organized, setting priorities, and managing time, and they feel a constant low level of panic and guilt. It is possible to control ADT by engineering one's environment and one's emotional and physical health, by getting enough sleep, switching to a good diet, and getting adequate exercise.

The explanation of ADT offers a reason of the craze, or is it popular madness of the day? In this modern and fast-paced world, we are all overloaded with knowledge and information. Because one's brain is unable to digest all the stuff, our brain's frontal lobes lose their sophistication, according to the experts. I do not understand what it means, but the symptoms are very common. The cures proposed are quite sensible. Just note that all these aim to keep you work more effectively and efficiently, instead of staying away from work.

I would like to add a few tips to keep one away from the madness of the modern pace. 1. Do not press the lift button in the lift lobby more than once. We all know that the lift will come with one press. The rest are madness. 2. Do not press the close door button in the lift; the door is programmed to close in a short time. 3. Do not walk on the escalator. The escalator is designed to walk for you, thus the steps are designed in such a way that they are hazardous to walk on. They are too high and the height changes at the beginning and end. You will also disturb others who stay put. But there are many mad people who walk on and keep pushing others aside. 4. Do not click the Internet link more than once. Doing so will not make the webpage load faster, but actually slower because the page have to be reloaded again. 5. Do not click the inbox button of the mailer more than once. One click will load all the mail. New mail will not normally come within a few seconds. These are all my bad habits which I try very hard to beat. Now I know it is not my fault, but the normal ADT that almost all modern men and women have. Old habits are hard to overcome, but special effort made on them are paying off. I now feel a lot better just standing on the escalator.

This reminds me of the Sixty Minutes Plus I saw some time ago. It mentioned a successor to the Generation X: the baby boomer population. Someone called it Generation Y for the population born in the 80s and 90s. It is the spoiled generation and most of them are too much cared for by their parents, schools and the TV. They work and play with computers, surf the Internet, and enjoy very fast communication and entertainment. This generation is brought up in group activities starting from kindergarten, evaluated as members of groups and the team concept is well within them. The observation is that the Generation Y is not as rebellious as those before them. They conform to their ideals and go with the mainstream. The problems with them are that they are unable to think long term. Anything that cannot give instant gratification are boring to them, which is the results of the modern trend of "Instant" everything. They believe that life is good and they will success in their career, but the reality is not the case. I think they will be the victims of ADT.

Institutions did the research on Generation Y with another motive. They worked for big companies and were trying to find out the market environment of the future. The Generation Y is now in the high schools and universities. But companies are preparing marketing strategies for them in the next two decades. Predictions: long term products such as mortgages will be replaced by products with instant results. Advertising for long term penetration will not be successful, rather messages on the Internet, SMS and on-site demo at Generation Y hang-outs are more effective.

I am already feeling a bit old.

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