Consider this fun fact:
A weekday edition of the New York Times probably contains more information than the average person was likely to come across in a lifetime in seventeenth-century England.
Or this one:
At the end of World War II, human knowledge was doubling every 25 years. Now thanks to technology, it’s happening every 13 months.
Or how about this mind boggling suggestion:
According to IBM, the Internet of Things changes everything. The IoT is the giant network of connections that now exists between people & people, people & things (like your smart phone) and increasingly between things (your smart phone can now tell your house lights to turn on). Apparently IBM predicts that the IoT will cause the doubling of human knowledge every 12 hours.
Maybe those facts are not so fun after all.21st century access to information is a good news-bad news thing.That's why you need strategies for… Click To Tweet
It’s convenient and enlightening and sometimes just cool to have so much information at our fingertips.
On the other hand, no wonder your head feels cluttered up. You are constantly bombarded with information throughout the day. Your brain is busy sorting and categorizing and storing all that info. Even when you are not aware of it.
Remember the good old days when 16 gigabytes of storage seemed so huge you would never use it all up?
With data constantly expanding, you have to have somewhere to put it all. Now we have terabytes and petabytes and exabytes and all kinds of other bytes – each one a 1000 times bigger than the last one.
Here’s the impact
While a computer may to able to sort and organize all that info, we mere mortals find ourselves being distracted by so much information continually coming at us. It’s becoming increasingly harder to know what to pay attention to:
Should I focus on this or should I focus on that?
Just when we have settled into a task, some beep or buzz notifies us that there is a new piece of info for us to consume – an email, a text message, a Facebook post, an Instagram pic or some Twitter soundbite. Our attention is pulled away, even for only a moment, which makes our ability to pay attention to what we are actually trying to do a real challenge.
Between the sheer volume of information and the constant distraction, its downright exhausting.
Declutter your brain
So how can you declutter your information overloaded brain?
We’ve gotten used to instant access to news – any news, even if it’s not really all that important. The other problem is that the 24 hour news cycle means that you hear the same news repeated in a slightly different version over and over again until the next big news story breaks. Decide when and how you want to get the news of the day and then ignore the rest. Trust me, if it’s really important news, you’ll hear about it.
With access to hundreds of television channels via cable or internet, you can watch just about anything. Sadly, a lot of what there is to watch really isn’t worth watching. It’s definitely a case of quantity over quality. Make a conscious choice about your entertainment viewing and limit the junk overload.
Social media is likely here to stay but you get to decide how much you want to interact with it. Information overload also comes via Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram. You don’t have to have instant access to who likes what or who is doing what where and when. Make social media work for you, not the other way around.
Be aware of FOMO
One of the reasons we stay plugged in is that we suffer from FOMO – a Fear of Missing Out. Yes that is an actual thing. People become anxious because they are concerned that “something” will happen that they won’t know about. Or they want to be first in the loop to learn what is going on in their social circle.
You don’t have to be plugged in 24/7. Most of what you hear probably falls into the “more info than you need” category. Sure some of it is likely “nice to know” information that you will hear about eventually. If it’s info you really need about your friends and family, trust that you will get it in a timely fashion.
Why not give your brain a rest?
The less cluttered your head is, the less cluttered your life will be.The less cluttered your head is, the less cluttered your life will be. Click To Tweet
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