Skip to navigationSkip to content

People Underestimate How Fun It Is to Do the Same Thing Twice

By The Atlantic

It’s common to prize novelty in leisure activities, but research suggests that revisiting the familiar can offer unexpected pleasuresRead full story


  • Also share to
  • Adèle Salin-Cantegrel
    Adèle Salin-CantegrelFounder at scikoop

    It is essential to count on this « fun factor » of repetitions in science where the exact same observations have to be validated at least 3 times!

  • Ephrat Livni
    Ephrat LivniSenior Reporter at Quartz

    As a huge fan of repeat experiences, I am surprised this finding is news. It’s a question of breadth versus depth. Familiarity doesn’t always breed contempt—sometimes, often I find, it leads to a deeper appreciation of the experience being repeated.

  • Agreed. I’ve increasingly found that the second dip, goes deeper and with a slightly different perspective than the first. Round two subtracts the nascent experience and allows a focus on what it is you want to see.

  • Eric Artisan
    Eric ArtisanManaging Director at Artisan Venture

    Title is misleading: “expected dullness might be exaggerated” aka “less dull” is different from having “fun” doing the same thing twice. I’m not starving for less dull and I doubt many people are. Also, if you experience something a second time - forced or not - you tend to “romanticize” the repeat attempt in order to create a positive “cognitive dissonance.” It’s a simple assessment of risk/reward. So the conclusions in the article are not all that surprising.

  • Weiyee IN
    Weiyee INChief Strategy Officer

    Maybe we missed everything about Brexit. maybe they keep doing the same thing over and over again because they think it's fun.

  • So maybe it is not a bad thing to just accept the fact that you are a creature of habit.

  • Consider this a reminder to reread that book, rewatch that movie, replay that game.

  • Ben Berman
    Ben BermanRobot Programmer

    And people always laugh at me for watching the same shows over and over

  • Kalesh Menon
    Kalesh MenonFinance Controller at Ingredion Thailand

    Picking up the book you read again or going for your favourite playlist or movie the n'th time is always the feel good factor.

    How about when it is a repetitive task at work or home? Would doing this same 'thing' is fun for most or would the interest start waning and need to start looking for something different start to pique? 🤔

  • It's fun doing the same thing twice. It's fun doing the same thing twice. Well maybe not so much. Well maybe not so much.

  • David Yakobovitch
    David YakobovitchAI Professor at Galvanize

    You get better, your learn new things, and you gain a sense of appreciation. Do things that count twice. X2

  • Eashwar Dev Ananad
    Eashwar Dev AnanadCeo at Farmhub

    I do have fun doing the same thing twice, when I have found discovered something new the second time. In the case of a museum, one keeps discovering something new in what they have already seen as these are paintings and our interpretation of a painting changes the more we watch them and based on our emotional state at that time. Probably the study should have focused on daily mundane tasks.

  • "I have no idea what he's talking about," I say while rewatching The West Wing for the 6th time.

  • Henry Tobias Jones
    Henry Tobias JonesEditor of Dyson on: at Dyson

    This is a really, really great, great read.

  • Repeating an experience is equivalent to being “in the zone” when you are running. Repeated motion, getting to a rhythm, really sensing what you are doing, and getting the good benefits of sticking it through. Maybe that’s what kids see in viewing the same film multiple times—-you learn different things at each pass. What a lovely way to balance novelty, innovation, and repeatability.

Want more conversations like this?

Join the Quartz community for all the intelligence, without the noise.

App Store BadgeGoogle Play Badge
Leaderboard Screenshot

A community of leaders, subject matter experts, and curious minds bringing nuance back to how we talk about the news.

Editors' Picks Screenshot

No content overload: our editors will curate the most notable and discussion-worthy pieces for you every day.

Share Screenshot

Don’t just read the story, tell it: contribute your ideas and experience to the dialogue.