Why You Need to Be Interrupted – Slow Down Challenge Day 4

Have you ever been interrupted? Good. It needs to (and will) happen again.

No, this is not like: “…I’m really happy for you, I’ma let you finish…” a la Kanye West type of way, but something a bit deeper.

This is Day 4 of Jeff Goins Slow Down Challenge

Read Part 1

Read Part 2

Read Part 3

slow down jon d harrison jeff goins interrupt

In another post, I wrote about how to interrupt others (and not look like a total jerk). But what about you? Can you be interrupted?

There is a really interesting research experiment from the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology by Darley & Batson, that came to my mind when I thought about Day 4 of Jeff’s Goins Slow Down Challenge (Yes, I keep a list of research from professional academic journals in my head at all times – let’s not make a big deal about it).

The study –

“Examined… the helping behavior of 40 theology students in an emergency situation suggested by the parable of the Good Samaritan. [Individuals] going between 2 buildings encountered a shabbily dressed person slumped by the side of the road. [Individuals] in a hurry to reach their destination were more likely to pass by without stopping.

Some [individuals] were going to give a short talk on the parable of the Good Samaritan, others on a nonhelping relevant topic; this made no significant difference in the likelihood of their giving the victim help.”

Darly & Batson

Link to the Full Study

The outcome of this study demonstrated that even seminary students on the way to teach about the “Good Samaritan” did not stop to be a “Good Samaritan” to others.

Out of the entire study, less than half actually stopped to help the “victim.” What made the greatest difference was not knowledge, or even the topic the individuals were preparing to speak about.

It was how interruptible they were.

Those who were not in a hurry or running late provided the greatest amount of assistance, with over 60% stopping to help.

Compare that to the busiest individuals, running late – only 10% stopped to provide any type of help.

Several of the seminary students in a hurry to speak on the topic of the “Good Samaritan” even stepped right over the “victim” in their efforts to be on time.


Day 4 challenge was all about being interruptible. I was even interrupted by my son waking up while I was writing this post.

I chose to just ignore him since I had a blog post to write.

Totally kidding.

I ran to his side with my wife, and laid down next to him until he went back to sleep – focusing on the moment, not worrying about getting back to writing, checking if anyone new subscribed to my blog, hurrying to get back to the things I had on my mind, or even checking out some of the great websites I follow like this one, this one, or this one.

I just enjoyed the moment.

And it was awesome.

“The path to legacy comes to those who help others, who make time for interruptions. Those are the people we remember.”

 Jeff Goins

Are you  interruptible? More importantly, how nice are you when interrupted?

What interruption will you allow today? Sometimes the best moments are when others bump into the things we had planned, maybe with something even better than we imagined. Are you paying attention?