Being surrounded by noise and people all day raises your cortisol levels. This chemical is responsible for all the things that make you unproductive. It raises your anxiety and stress levels, and cuts off good decision making. That’s why open space work plans don’t work. They create an environment that drains you of your creative energies instead of feeding them.
Study after study has shown that people do their best work or practice in solitude. When they are alone is when they can get a deep form of concentration which is impossible to attain when you are afraid of being judged by a group. People are even able to come up with more and higher quality ideas when they are alone than in the famous brain storming sessions.
The ideas of brain storming and group think got their start from online communities. However these communities function completely differently from in person group work.
In online communities participants get solitude to put together their ideas before sharing it with others. This creates the best of both world. It lets people have the concentrated time that they need while still sharing ideas.
Despite all these benefits of solitude, face to face time still hold an important place. It’s the best way to build trust and friendships. It’s the social glue that make collaboration possible. But it’s best saved for short bursts. Then it can provide the catalyst for further work without making everyone involved distracted from doing the work.