5 Excuses For Being Lazy (Provided By Science)

Do you spend 10 minutes driving around parking lots looking for the closest spot? Do you have a treadmill you use as a towel rack? Is cooking anything that takes more than 15 minutes basically the same as climbing Mount Everest? Congratulations, you are one of my people.

Society wants us to feel bad about being lazy -- it's even one of the seven deadly sins -- but I am here to tell you to ignore all that noise, accept who you are, and I'll understand if you have to stop reading this article because scrolling becomes too much effort.

#5. To Fight Laziness, You're Fighting Evolution

Celso Diniz/iStock/Getty Images

So much of our lives are wrapped up in the fight between nature and nurture. Your parents may have been industrious people who tried to raise you to follow in their quickly moving footsteps. But you became the sort of person who is reading this article only to avoid doing actual work. (When you've finished this one, might I recommend a few more?) But it isn't their fault. They are fighting millions of years of nature selecting for the laziest people to survive.

Digital Vision./DigitalVision/Getty Images
Mother Nature thinks this guy is super sexy.

You'd think that it would be the opposite, since if you couldn't be bothered to put in the effort to run away from a lion, your chances of breeding were pretty much zero. But preserving energy was incredibly important when you didn't know where your next meal was coming from. If you had to conserve calories, sitting around gave you the best chance of survival. Being lazy literally saved our ancestor's lives. And despite the fact that we are now lounging around watching Netflix instead of shapes in the clouds, our brains haven't changed. They still view putting effort into something as a life-or-death decision.

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This is basically CPR.

In caveman times, we didn't plan ahead for anything, because there was a good chance we'd be dead. We went for instant gratification all of the time. Now time has moved on, but our brain is still stuck in that mindset, wanting to lie on the couch eating ice cream rather than do work. For a lot of us, if we can't see that exerting ourselves is going to result in an immediate payoff, we're not interested. Making detailed plans and following through is hard. You know what's easy? Being lazy and telling ourselves that it isn't really our fault.

#4. There Will Probably Be A Pill For It One Day

kwanchaichaiudom/iStock/Getty Images

Of course, there are those annoying people out there who manage to use their intelligence and fight their evolutionary background enough to be functional members of society. They make the rest of us look bad, and they also prove that if we really tried we could be just like them, all peppy and infuriatingly productive, right? Possibly not. Thank the Lord; there is another excuse for why you sit around on your increasingly large butt all the time. Some people have a double whammy.


Speaking of, all this reading must be tiring. Take a quick break.

For those people, not only is evolution against them, but they have a mutated gene that makes them even lazier. This mutation affects the system in the brain that regulates how much physical activity you get. In other words, if you have this mutation, your brain forces you not to exercise. Mice with the same mutation walked around just one-third as often as a normal mouse, and when they did manage to motivate themselves to get up and walk to their mouse-sized refrigerators, they moved slower.

sextoacto/iStock/Getty Images
You'd put it off, too, if you had to go through a stupid maze every time.

But scientists found that giving mice with the mutated gene a pill that activated their dopamine receptors got them up and moving. And the scientists involved think that such a pill will one day be a part of the fight against human obesity. While the chances of you having the gene are really low (they found it in two of the 400 people they studied) the important thing is that you COULD have it. And the scientists think millions of people overall will be helped by this magic pill ... when they get around to making it. I'm not saying they are procrastinating, but they did discover this a year and a half ago. Still, until then there is probably nothing we can do, so we might as well skip the gym until they make the human version.

#3. It Will Bring Us Closer Together

Digital Vision./DigitalVision/Getty Images

It is a fractured world we live in. The class divide is getting larger, political parties are getting more polarized, and religious groups face discrimination all around the world. But if there is one thing that can bring us together as a human race, it is laziness. That's because if you aren't a part of a group, chances are that you think that group is really lazy.

For example, the 2012 American National Election Study found that 53 percent of white people think that they work harder than black people. That's right, even in a supposedly post-racial America, and after having an African-American president for a whole term at the time of the study, the "black people are lazy" stereotype still exists.


You should feel ashamed for even having this photo, Getty.

But it doesn't stop there. Thin people think that fat people are lazy as well. It doesn't matter that we know that everything from genetic disorders to economic status to if you were born during a C-section have a huge influence on your weight; people still think it is completely down to a fat person not putting in the effort to be thin. Because of that, obese people are discriminated against at work, more likely to be convicted of crimes, and even have a harder time making friends.

Completing our depressing threesome are the results of a poll on what the average American thinks about people living below the poverty line. Surprise, surprise: They think that poor people are poor because they are super lazy! Forty-three percent of those surveyed think that poor people could find a job if they really wanted to, regardless of other factors.


This guy couldn't even make it to his destination without stopping for a nap.

So what is the point of all this? Well, I think if we would just embrace our own laziness then we could all start loving each other. We might never be able to convince thin, rich, white people that everyone else isn't really as slothful as they think, but if we make it OK to embrace our own indolence, maybe that won't be a problem. So next time someone brings up one of these ugly stereotypes in your presence, proudly announce how you, too, are lazy. Wear it like a badge of honor. Then go back to trying to change channels with your mind like a Jedi since you can't reach the remote.

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Kathy Benjamin

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