Do you consume too much information? Is that even possible? Is that a bad thing?
Yes, you most likely consume too much information and even worse you consume the wrong kind of it.
Why is that a bad thing?
Because it eats up your time and doesn’t add value to your life.
Information used to be scarce and good, but now we have a surplus of information, and most of it is shit, yet we still consume the information because
- We don’t know any better and
- because we like to feel productive
When we consume information, it makes us feel productive which is a huge problem.
Browsing on Social Media and thinking that a Motivational tweet changed your life in any way is delusional, it might stir up some ideas in you but I highly doubt that 90% of the guys who read that tweet and said it changed their lives will do something with that apparently new found knowledge or wisdom.
More often than not reading blog posts or spending time on social media is time wasted unless you use it for business and to further your cause, and even then I’d limit the time spend on blogs and Social Media to a minimum since there are more effective ways to gain knowledge and soak up useful information.
I had this realization a few days ago, and I realized that I consumed a lot of useless and bad information. I engaged in it daily and spent hours wasting my time with it. Now that I realized this flaw I changed it.
What did I do?
I changed my news outlets, blogs that I read, the time I spent on social media, etc. and replaced it with actual useful mind-changing books and work that I had to do. It doesn’t sound like a big deal, but it is.
That’s why you should go on a low but high-quality information diet and see what changes, use your new found free time to be productive instead of feeling productive.
There is something called the obesity theory which comes close to what I am saying
It’s an analogy on how much food we consume.
Our bodies are pretty well evolved to keep us alive to make sure that we can survive through hard times and in the past calories where pretty difficult to come by so whenever there where a lot of calories around we would eat a little bit more, and we would put on some extra weight.
In a world where calories are scarce that was a very good strategy, but now that calories have become abundant to the extreme it’s become a very bad strategy, and that’s what led to a lot of obesity in certain countries.
Another example are moths.
Moths guide themselves by light sources and in the past at night the only major light sources you would have where the moon and the stars and those are so far away that if your guidance strategy is to keep those lights at a constant angle to you then basically you go in a straight line but once small local sources of light come into play like candles then that strategy results in circling around the candle and maybe even get killed by it because the moth flew too close to it.
So an evolutionary strategy that worked in a historical environment is now horribly maladaptive in this new environment
It’s the same way we approach information these days.
Information used to be scarce and valuable.
Knowledge is power and who doesn’t want more power right?
So if the information is on offer, then our brains want it and take as much as it can, but now it’s maladaptive because there is so much bad and useless information out there that you have a hard time finding the good valuable stuff.
Between Quora and Twitter feces it becomes hard to find valuable books these days.
Imagine yourself reading the information several years from now, after your current moods and inclinations (liking novelty, liking what’s popular) have faded. Would you still think it worthwhile to read?
How do you go on a low but yet high-quality information diet?
- Avoid “infotainment”. Infotainment is supposed to combine information with entertainment, but more often than not it’s neither.
- If you find yourself nodding in agreement with everything you read, then chances are you are not learning anything new and are excelling in the art of mental masturbation.
- One in, two out. Don’t make the mistake of bookmarking sites or subscribing to newsletters without getting rid of at least two.
- Have goals. Make sure every input in your life has a purpose and delete it when it no longer serves that purpose. If the goal has been met, get rid of the input. Don’t feel obligated to maintain it once it’s achieved its purpose.
Humans are an easily distracted species. All it takes is a phone call, a message on Social Media and you easily lose your focus and an hour of your time that you could’ve to spend working on something meaningful. Therefore, erasing all possible channels of distraction is something you should strive for.
The more isolated you are, the better results you’ll have.
That’s it for my advice about the low yet High-Quality information diet, but what’s your opinion? Have you done something like that and what was your experience?
Thanks for reading until next time.
P.S. If you liked this post then you’ll like my books as well. You can get them on Amazon.