Attention is extremely valuable. The valuations of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat prove it. Consider Facebook’s offer to buy Snapchat:

$3 billion in cash, according to people familiar with the offer, for a two-year-old app with no revenue and no timetable for revenue (emphasis added)

Attention (with a median age of 18 in the case of Snapchat) is valued far more highly than revenue.

Think about advertising. Advertisers spend tens of billions of dollars to buy attention. Your attention. It’s that valuable.

How do you value your attention? Who or what has your attention? How do you allocate this most valuable resource?

Three takeaways…

  1. Value your attention highly. You likely undervalue it.
  2. Be discriminating when you give your attention away. Your attention is too valuable to watch a TV show you don’t care about, not to mention the commercials.
  3. Give more of your attention to people and meaningful work than to consumptive screens. Keeping your phone in your pocket while talking to someone is perhaps the ultimate way to affirm a person’s worth in our culture.

If I have your attention, thank you. I’ll do my best not to waste it.