Scarcity And Lack Of Scarcity

1278 Words6 Pages
Everyone can relate to working under pressure, time is scarce as work is being finished at the last minute. People who don’t manage their time well often neglect their work and race against deadlines. This behavior is known as scarcity, which is expounded in the book Scarcity: Why Having So Little Means So Much, written by Sendil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir. Mullainathan and Shafir define scarcity as “having less than you feel you need”(4). Scarcity alters perception of resources like time, which leads people to believe they do not have enough. Scarcity is composed of several components, the most significant being abundance, neglect, and slack. Abundance is a period where we waste time. Neglect is when we ignore “important but not urgent…show more content…
During my junior year of high school I had to write a research paper for English and Environmental Science class. Both essays had the same five page requirement, as well as the same due date. Students that took the science elective were given the option to use the same research paper topic for both classes. I chose to write separate topics for each class without giving the option any consideration. However, I soon realized that it would have been easier to use the same research paper for both classes. My science paper was easier to write about since it was based on already established facts. It took no time to write because all the sources I needed were in my textbook and databases on the internet. The English topic was more difficult as it involved supporting an abstract idea. I delayed researching the topic because I felt I had enough time to do it later.
We were given one-month deadlines for both papers. The abundant amount of time made the task seem unimportant. Mullainathan and Shafir state that abundance causes people to be wasteful: “In a world of scarcity, long deadlines are a recipe for trouble. Early abundance encourages waste…”(223) Early abundance tricks the mind into thinking that the task can be completed later. I didn’t start writing until the deadline was painfully apparent. I neglected my research paper because I didn’t Scarcity
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