Friday, November 23, 2012 – 34 views
— by timrowe
Yesterday, I decided not to use any social media networks at all. There was one exception: a quick visit to Facebook to respond to the the news that an old friend's daughter had been involved in a car accident.
Overall, what I noticed was the habitual way in which I often use social networks. My visits there have certain triggers:
If I'm waiting for the server I use to upload my work to, to respond (it's very slow at times), I will open another browser tab, and check either my #ADN stream or, less frequently, Facebook or Twitter. If I happen to find a conversation of interest - particularly these days on ADN, I can very easily become engaged. Even worse, if a link is provided, I'll click on that and become engrossed in the content of a new website.
I look at the time, and 10 - 15 minutes has passed. My work server has at last responded, and I've lost 15 minutes.
Push notifications can be a problem too. There's a definite buzz about responding in real time, but it can be a terrible "pull" too - particularly as we are not wired to be able to put our attention fully on more than one activity at a time.
My remedy? Awareness! Cultivating the faculty of awareness (Or, if you will, mindfulness.) Am I able to do things consciously or not? Or am I simply functioning unconsciously, like a programmed machine?
By the end of the day, I had not only been more productive (which wasn't even a goal in the first place) but I felt more peaceful, and I'd experienced a certain sense of "flow" while moving almost seamlessly from event to event throughout the day.
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