Robert Benchley

Robert Benchley Quote – Anyone can do any amount of work …

A GREAT many people have come up to me and asked me how I manage to get so much work done and still keep looking so dissipated.  My answer is “Don’t you wish you knew?”  and a pretty good answer it is, too, when you consider the nine times out of ten I didn’t hear the original question.

But the fact remains that hundreds of thousands of people throughout the country are wondering how I have time to do all my painting, engineering, writing and philanthropic work when, according to the rotogravure sections and society notes I spend all my time riding to hounds, going to fancy-dress balls disguised as Louis XIV or spelling out GREETINGS TO CALIFORNIA in formation with three thousand Los Angeles school Children.  “All work and all play,” they say.

The secret of my incredible energy and efficiency in getting work done is a simple one.  I have based it very deliberately on a well known psychological principle and have refined it so that it is now almost too refined.  I shall have to begin coarsening it up again pretty soon.

The psychological principle is this: anyone can do any amount of work, provided it isn’t the work he is supposed to be doing at that moment.

- Robert Benchley1

  1. The Benchley Roundup, pg. 5 []

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