Why is this so hard for so many of us? It's not because we need the email for our productivity, but because we are addicted to the possibility that there's a great tidbit in there somewhere. Like compulsive gamblers at a slot machine rewarded with a few quarters every dozen tries, we are trained to keep opening emails in the hope of a little shot of serotonin — a pleasant ping from the world of chronos. We must retrain ourselves instead to see the reward in the amount of time we get to spend in the reverie of solo contemplation or live engagement with another human being.