> Conclusions: Our results suggest that fatigued doctors might benefit from pharmacological enhancement in situations that require efficient information processing, flexible thinking, and decision making under time pressure. However, no improvement is likely to be seen in the performance of basic procedural tasks.
Sugden et al. (2012) Effect of Pharmacological Enhancement on the Cognitive and Clinical Psychomotor Performance of Sleep-Deprived Doctors. Ann Surg 255:222–227.
1. Never, ever, sacrifice good sleep.
2. Eat well, or at least don`t eat junk and too many carbs throughout the day (will get sleepy at least)
3. Exercise in moderation. Bonus points for working after exercise while the mind is boosted with happy chemicals.
4. Reduce stress, cognitive load with dumb stuff (news, gossip, things we can not influence) and give less *ucks in general about random things in life.
I was on a straight way to being a homeless depressed bum before I discovered Modafinil and Ritalin in my 30s. Today I am self-made millionaire, in happy relationship and with positive outlook on my life. I am thankful every time I pop a white little pill in the morning.
Do you take those legally?
I made a few visits to psychiatrists in the past. They always came up with some new disorder (every single one with a different one) and suggested some unproven time consuming therapy. I don't need their moralizing attitude nor do I need them to use me as a subject in a therapy group.
You have bigger chances of hurting yourself by getting a few drinks in the evening than by experimenting a for a few weeks with stimulants. If you feel they help you then you at least know the problem is in your brain chemistry and not in attitude/organization skills/fears or other bs I have heard throughout the years.
Re 1: Actual building codes that isolate the noise of neighbors (even in minimum code apartments).
Re 2: Figure out some incentive (not punishment) that makes the actually healthy foods more cost effective than the fast / junk foods.
Re 3: Encourage walkable + transit urban design and over-supply urban areas to keep the rents slightly less expensive than even middle of nowhere costs.
Re 4: Sorry, evolving the species is going to take more time, we can only keep pushing.
For the most part, people do cook these basic foods, usually with some meat thrown in where they can (The crowd I associate with aren't the wealthiest)
#3 I experienced this a lot growning up in a city that was deliberately designed like this and built up from farmland in the 70s in the UK. I feel like the design has been so successful (popping up an entire city from nothing in 50 years) that other countries should really consider also investing in creating new properly designed cities as a response to the idea 'the big cities were designed badly when first built and now we're stuck with them'
Nothing really worked.
What did work was waking up early and working out regularly. I sleep by 11 and wake up by 6. I get at least two hours of work in before hitting the gym for 45-60 minutes.
I manage to get far, far more work done than any Nootropic I ever tried.
Coffee doesn't help me focus by itself, quite the opposite actually. I wish it did because I LOVE coffee. I don't know what's wrong with me, since plenty of other people I know can use it to focus, while I just end up feeling inpatient and restless.
I got my first prescription for adderall in 2013. I was started at 30 mg XR and 20 IR, which is kind of ridiculous. I'm still amazed that this is considered a low-average dosage for lots of Americans. I took those a few times only, dumped my pills, then over the next few months worked my way down to 10 XR/5 IR, which I've been at ever since.
I know I'm reducing my lifespan by using them, but it's a deal with the devil that's ultimately worth it for me. I'll take ~5 less years of living as a geriatric in exchange for being able to better provide for a family.
You could start with an even split then adjust the ratio depending on how you feel.
Depending on the side-effects you may well end up losing 5 healthy years. Ie, become a geriatric 5 years earlier, effectively spending the exact same amount of time as one.
You are? That's something I've not heard about before. Methamphetamine is neurotoxic, but not dextroamphetamine, which is what Adderall is.
Kind of a tradeoff you won't expect to be made in 1st world countries...
30%?! That seems incredibly high to me.
> based on the Global Drug Survey — an annual, anonymous online questionnaire about drug use worldwide.
Oh. So total junk. Got it.
The GDS is a trove of knowledge about drug use habits around the world, however everyone who takes the survey is a drug user. So 30% of people using illicit drugs in the USA are using them for performance enhancement. The other 70% are using them recreationally.
The survey's findings need to be taken in further context though. The people who take the GDS tend to be higher educated and wealthier, due to the channels that the survey is shared on, and because it's an online survey you're probably not getting many homeless heroin addicts filling the survey.
Probably the most interesting and reliable data to come from the survey is actually pricing.
Is it not possible for 30% to use them for performance enhancement and for 90% to use them for recreation?
I am not familiar with the survey design.
I find it quite likely that most people using drugs for performance are probably also using them recreationally.
> In a survey of tens of thousands of people
I would have much preferred "tens of thousands of self-reported drug users..."
It's unfortunate. Makes me sad for my children. Thankfully we have the means where we don't have to double-down on their education in order to provide for ourselves later in life.
Doesn't this heavily depend on the sector/region/country? Just 'more competition for less slots' sounds overly general. But if it's actually happening I'd be interesting in finding out why? More people? Less slots due to economic causes? Likewise for the necessity of a degree. Why is that, is it the result of automation or so? Do you have numbers to back this up?
Programmers could get hired from the street with next to no education 25 years ago, today the need at least a bachelors for quite a lot of the jobs.
There are less people but automation and digitization has removed a lot of jobs that where previously filled with unskilled labour, and we’re rapidly eating into even semi-skilled labour.
Finance is a good example, you used to have economics and accountants with various secretary functions below them. Thanks to automation and digitization you only really need the economics today, well, and a robot process automation programmer - but that could easily be one of the economics. Accounts are still somewhat needed, though you only really need about a third compared to before you automated and you only really need them because it’s impossible to hire enough analytics to run your ML.
You can apply this stuff to almost every sector too. Secretary functions are rapidly becoming completely unnecessary and so are junior positions.
An analogy I usually use is the assembly line. If you peeled into a factory hall 150 years ago it was full of people, today it’s full of machines. If you look into an office 100 years ago, it was full of people using typewriters and filing forms, an office is still largely like that, but in 50 years it’ll be like the factory.
My department works with digitization. Before the summer vacation we automated a filing process in which 35.000 forms were sorted and filed into different cases each month by 5 people, now automation does it all and we didn’t even need any business knowledge from those 5 people because they were really just following a todo list for each form.
I stopped using it pretty soon after that and found a methodology for studying that suited me personally. Not always easy though.
^^ Awesome phrase I've never heard before and can apply to so many situations. This one's going into my lexicon - thank you!
I've used a combination of 4f-mph + ipph (which is not perfect because 4f-mph has a much, much longer half life) and it lead me to believe that playing with the ratios of stereoisomers of methylpheniate and adding other derivatives (like isopropylphenidate) to change the dopamine/norepinephrine reuptake inhibition would make a much better drug in my case.
The calm and deep focus + the lack of any side effects was amazing; I'm not using anymore because 4f-mph has very little long-term human studies + I'm a parent now and the thought of police tearning down my door because I've ordere 1 gram of a chemical over the internet is not very peasant.
But I do wish for a future where personalized drugs and therapies were a thing instead of demonizing drugs.
I suspect that's been selected for quite strongly.
I'm also medically against it, because it's how habits form. There are a lot of people who have become addicted to methamphetamine because they started using to be able to work harder for longer (apparently it's a problem in industries like meatworks, where workers are paid piece rates per animal).
Some substance/combinations have had a dramatic effect on my ability to focus, unfortunately they are not perfect/and or I'm unable to find some.
I'm not using drugs to "work harder", it's just that I'm unable to work for weeks at a time without chemical help (I'm chewing some nicotine gum as I'm typing).
I think that being "medically against it" is doing a tremendous amount of harm to millions of people throuout the world (in my country you can't bediagnosed with ADHD as an adult for example), just as being to lax about it.
That's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about people who use methamphetamine to work longer shifts, or modafinil to get that mental edge over their colleagues so they can get that promotion and a pay rise. I believe that (with the exception of prescribed drugs) you should never take drugs because you feel you need to. You should only ever take drugs because you want to. Dropping a cap of MDMA or drinking a bottle of wine because you've had a shit week is a sure fire way to develop a habit, I know this from experience.
That's not to say it's a good thing, but it has always been there.