A World Without Email Part One

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This weekend I'm so excited to welcome back Cal Newport to the show, who joins us to talk about his latest book, A World Without Email: Reimagining Work in an Age of Communication Overload.

Modern knowledge workers communicate constantly. Their days are defined by a relentless barrage of incoming messages and back-and-forth digital conversations, a state of constant, anxious chatter in which nobody can disconnect, and so nobody has the cognitive bandwidth to perform substantive work.

There was a time when tools like email felt cutting edge, but a thorough review of current evidence reveals that the "hyperactive hive mind" workflow they helped create has become a productivity disaster, reducing profitability and perhaps even slowing overall economic growth.

Equally worrisome, it makes us miserable. Humans are simply not wired for constant digital communication.

We have become so used to an inbox-driven workday that it's hard to imagine alternatives.

But they do exist.

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