For many of us, the internet has generated a renaissance of productivity, innovation, and creativity. We have more resources, tools, and information at our fingertips during every part of our day than ever before.
However, with our newfound ability to always be connected, we have inadvertently created an always on-demand culture that in many ways forces us to be available and responsive at all times.
With the whole internet constantly competing for our attention, we are often left treading water, trying to stay afloat in the constant stream of information and communication.
This flow of information and communication, once delivered daily in the form of newspapers and mail, is now being delivered constantly in notifications, buzzes, and pings – filling our inboxes and feeds.
We feel busy and productive, however we’ve traded ‘deep work’ and meaningful conversations for shallow tasks and distracting IMs.
BECOMING (SELECTIVELY) UNAVAILABLE
Our brains do their best work when they are uninhibited by distraction and focused on a sole task. This type of work, often referred to as ‘deep work,’ is mentally taxing, but also what we find most rewarding. However, reaching this state is not easy when the whole world is just a few clicks away.
At Freedom, we have always been pro-internet. We believe that fighting technology or reverting back to newspaper delivery and snail mail will never be the answer. By managing the your relationship with technology, it can be invaluable.
We propose becoming more intentional with your time. Rather than spending your whole day trying to keep up with your inbox, IMs, and notifications, dedicate a block of your time to checking those things and stick to it. Consolidating these small tasks into intentional segments prevents distraction and keeps you focused on the task at hand – allowing you to do your best uninterrupted ‘deep work.’
Use Freedom to help keep your commitment to this time by blocking email, messenger, and other time-suckers, or as Cal Newport, author of “Deep Work,” recommends – write an attention charter, where you decide what has the right to your attention.
With Freedom, you can make ‘deep work’ a habit by scheduling recurring blocks of your most distracting sites and applications.
It’s not about ridding your life of technology, just making it work for you at the right times.