You Are Less Industrious Than You Think

| Thu Jan. 16, 2014 3:15 PM EST

Catherine Rampell reports today that we work less than we think we do and sleep more than we think we do.  She has a few guesses about why this might be, along with the possibility that it's merely a statistical aberration. But my guess is that she's right when she suggests that "people just systematically exaggerate their industriousness." For some reason, we all like the idea that we are uniquely besieged with too much work and too little sleep and yet somehow manage to perform our jobs awesomely anyway. It's just one of the little fairy tales we tell to keep ourselves plugging along.