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Time spent thinking on technicalities

  1. Oct 26, 2013 #1
    Solving a problem is essentially an ordered sequence consisting of two essential steps: planning and executing. Often I spent an inordinate amount of time in phase two, the executive part. Mostly it comes down to tedious technicalities.

    For example, in order to solve Buffon's needle problem you take the integral of the inverse cosine function, the integral of inverse sine function gives the complementary chance. That's where I got stuck for too long a time, because why wasn't it the other way around?

    I hope this particular example clarifies my general problem, often while solving a problem or studying a book I feel I waste my time on non-important formalities. The linguistic almost-analogue would be writing a book and spending all your time correcting spelling mistakes!

    Since study-time is limited by distraction and sleep, this compulsive inefficiency is frustrating and destructive.

    For every 10 minutes of inspiration 50 minutes of enervation?
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 26, 2013 #2


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    Gold Member

    You are simply interested in the details ... while some people are only interested in the broad strokes.

    It takes both kinds to get anything done.

    But you will be more efficient if you add a third step:
    1) Initial planning
    2) Refinement & time budget
    3) Execution - with a timer set!
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