Do You Zone-Out 46.9% of The Time (at your office)?

Although I am a Contrarian (trained at law school) I have done the research about Mind-Wandering, Day-Dreaming and Zoning-Out. Result: you and I are OOI (Out Of It) a minimum of 30% (at school) to 47% of the time (at your career). Weird.

Google: the journal Science by Daniel T. Gilbert, Harvard University, Nov. 2010.

So What

Mind Wandering is a lack of attention and loss of comprehension. Like being seriously overweight – when I got on the scale I was dumbfounded with the reading.
Who knew? I nonconsciously chose to not weigh myself in two-years. Sigmund Freud would call it my defense mechanism.

Homo sapiens are masked from noticing the reality of our insistent Daydreaming by
being actively engaged in other distracting activities. Like what? Three-things.

a) setting long-term goals and evaluating our success and failure.
b) receiving insights and intuitions about our activities.
c) balancing our mind between our conscious and non-conscious information flow, V-A-K ( Visual-Auditory-Kinesthetic – feeling ), and focusing on our mind-body connection for healing.


When you see other people blinking their eyes repetitively, they are shutting out
new information from entering their mind. They are mentally snoozing while you
are explaining. Blinking is a direct result of Mind-Wandering (Day Dreaming and
Zoning-Out). It is a physical wall (barrier) erected between the world and us.

We are either on-task or OOI (Out Of It) and it involves both your mind and physical body (eyes). Inquiring Minds need to know: we average 15 blinks per minute, one every four-second.

A blink last one-tenth of a second, while reading a book reduces blinking to 3-5 times per minute. The greater your concentration, the less your eyes blink away.

Secret of Power Attention (Concentration)

We call it - Six WHs and One How - Please focus on remembering and using the
following mental-images.

1. Who? Mentally picture an owl and remember his limited vocabulary.
Associated the wise old owl and the Question – Who?

2. What? Pick out the word Hat from the question – What? Create a mental
image now. When you see the word What? you mind associates a Hat.

3. When? Now mentally withdraw the word Hen from the question – When?
From now on always associate a egg-laying hen when you see of hear the word

4. Where? Just imagine a hare (rabbit) when you see or hear the word Where? Pull it out of the magician’s bag – a hare out of Where? Sounds-alike, right?

5. Why? Let the word so a sound-alike. Why? reminds you of Eye. Why? answers our need for meaning with out all-seeing eye.

6. Which? automatically creates a mental-image of a Witch riding a broomstick. Witch? is associated with Which?

7. How? sounds like Cow, right? Do it, don’t suppress your 12-year old
inner-child – make a mooing sound. Associate How? with the sound-alike cow.

So What

When you ask questions of yourself – it’s called Think-ing. Wait. When you
are engaged in thinking – linking your left and right hemispheres, conscious and non-conscious, and reason and emotion, you are planning and evaluating.

So what’s wrong with that? It is not Mind-Wandering, Zoning-Out, and Day Dreaming, right? It is a question of timing. When you Day Dream at the office or in school – you are not on-target with business goals and learning. Day-Dreaming 47% of the time is way, too much.

Ask the - Six-Wh’s and One How questions - and you keep on-track and reduce blinking and Day-Dreaming down to only 10-15% instead of 47%.
Now mentally review and say aloud the visual substitutes for the word
questions. How? is a Cow, Why? is an Eyes, etc.

A Human Mind

A human mind (majority) is a Wandering (Day Dreaming, Zoning-Out) mind.
So what? Get this: a wandering mind is an Unhappy mind. When we mind-
wander we are using our Default thinking system. Either concentrate or Day

This losing our place when reading (we Regress 6-7 times per page) causes
a loss of self-esteem, personal confidence and comprehension. When we
Regress we lose attention and concentration our long-term memory loses track
our the meaning we take from what we read. Learning is affected negatively.
“Our mental lives are pervaded to remarkable degree, to not being present.”


Humans are happiest during these three activities:

1. Making love – we are really present.
2. Active exercising.
3. Engaging in pleasant conversations.

We are least happy doing these three things, sorry but it is a scientific fact –
when we are Working, Resting, and or on the Computer. If it feels like Work,
we take it as being controlled by others, and we hate that feeling.

The greater percentage of Mind-Wandering, the less happiness we bring into
our lives. We are hardwired to being-present, and not having a competition
between switch back and forth from being in-the-moment and day-dreaming.


Our goal is to pay attention, concentrate on being in the here-and-now, and
quickly becoming aware of our mind-wandering. Once you are aware you are
day-dreaming, you can start asking yourself questions, and get back on track.

Remember: mind-wandering is a major cause of our unhappiness. It is
something you can physically and mentally do something about it. Start now.

Last point: you are wasting a couple of hours daily by reading and learning
like a snail. Speed Reading can eliminate Subvocalization (hearing each word
you read in-your-mind) and Regression – losing your place on the page and
loss of concentration, both required for effective long-term memory.

Contact us for a free, no-strings-attached, How-To report on speed reading

See ya,

copyright © H. Bernard Wechsler, 2010 –

Author's Bio: 

Author of Speed Reading For Professional, published by Barron's.
Business partner of Evelyn Wood (1907-1995)creator of speed reading.
Graduating 2-million, including the White House staffs of four U.S.
Presidents: Kennedy-Johnson-Nixon-Carter.