Life provides us with many lessons many of which are passed down from generation to generation unfortunately some of them, which may sound like common sense, don’t actually work as well as we would like to think, and in fact, the opposite may hold true. Similarly, there are other life lessons that are counter-intuitive to what we think would happen. This answer found in Quora helps to describe what counter-intuitive life lessons go against common sense or wisdom.
Here’s what Alan Rutledge, has to say about it –
The key to enjoying life is keeping expectations low to the degree that you’re always pleasantly surprised.
Hypothetically a well-rested person working 55-hour work weeks can usually outperform a sleep-deprived person working 80-hour work weeks in terms of quality, all else equal (specifically for knowledge work).
Caveats: so long as it fits within your ethical framework and the perceived penalty is tolerable (not advisable in foreign countries however haha). People die regretting all the things they didn’t do rather than the things they did do.
Prevention (i.e. good diet and food ingredients) is an order of magnitude cheaper than treatment (most age-related diseases are correlated with poor dietary choices).
Students who were asked to exert willpower by not eating enticing cookies put before them for a period of time spent an average of 8 minutes trying to solve an impossible puzzle. Students who could freely indulge in the cookies attempted to solve the puzzle for an average of 32 minutes.
If you try to stop watching TV your willpower will eventually break. If you get rid of your TV and use a browser extension to block Hulu/YouTube your habit will more readily break.
Most of us spend the majority of our 24-hour day sitting in a chair or sleeping on a mattress so it’s not surprising that most back problems originate from poor sitting/sleeping posture. The extra money spent in getting a good Aeron chair and foam mattress pays for itself in the long-run.
The marginal benefit of adding a sixth or seventh person to a team rarely outweighs the marginal costs associated with additional communication and collaboration effort (specifically for knowledge work that requires close collaboration like software development).
By doing something (working hard, smoking, etc.) you are actively endorsing that behavior for your children. The more time you spend around them, the more influential behavioral signals become relative to spoken demands/requests (“you should work harder,” “please stop smoking,” etc.)
Study body language and you’ll be pretty shocked at how often peoples’ spoken words contradict their telltale non-verbal cues.
Beyond a certain threshold of intelligence and skill, the efficacy bottlenecks quickly become your ability to communicate, get along with others, prioritize, focus, structure your thinking in advance, manage your time well, etc.
I’ll leave this one open to interpretation :)
Here’s the link to the original answer plus many more.
Featured photo credit: businessman at the start of his journey via Shutterstock
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