The Time Drainer

Being informed is a virtue. It helps us make better decisions and encourages us to take action.

Getting hooked on an endless scroll of media inputs is not the same as being informed. There’s long been a business model of urgent news (“man bites dog!”), but now it’s been leveraged, amplified and optimized to suck people in for hours at a time. And division is much easier to sell than progress.

If it’s not helping you take action to make things better, what’s it for?

(copied from Seth’s Blog, by Seth Godin, July 21, 2020)

Well, this just about summed up what I’ve been thinking the past few days – am I wasting the days of my life on efforts to stay informed?  The answer is becoming more and more clear, yes. Yes, dear, you are.

I’ve always tried to hold social media at a distance.  I’m not like some people that are on it the entire day.  I don’t get notifications that demand my response, but I do find myself scrolling along quite frequently.  If I’m bored or avoiding doing something I need to do I think, well I’m just going to scroll through and see what everyone is doing.  And, I scroll and scroll, comment, and scroll some more. I tell myself to limit the scroll to twice a day – morning and evening – but rarely succeed.  I need to be informed, but as Seth says I get sucked in.  Time wasting at its finest and I’m not really informed of anything worthwhile.

And the news.  Oh my!  I’m a news junkie, I just want to know what is going on in the world all the time.  Got to stay informed, so I get sucked in, but not really informed.  Truthfully, I spend as much time fuming at the news as I do reading it or watching it.  Sometimes the news itself and most of the time the slant that is given to every news report.  Is there truth anywhere?  And what is wrong with the people of this world? Both questions absorb to much space in my mind and as Seth states, “division is much easier to sell than progress”.

Oh, there’s more, but, dear reader, you get the point.  I am spending too much time being informed and not enough time doing what is really important. In thinking about all my activities/hobbies/chores/projects I know that much of what I do needs to be prioritized and/or eliminated.  I need to be mindful of my time and what I’m doing.  I’m not alone either.  We have become a society of time wasters in the name of being informed and/or being productive.

Seth always tells it straight and today he confirmed my self questioning. “If it’s not helping you take action to make things better, what’s it for?”




6 thoughts on “The Time Drainer

  1. This week, while on vacation, I have used Facebook much less, and I haven’t even missed it. While I don’t want to eliminate it completely, I can definitely cut it back. I want to know the news as well, but it’s hard to get the news with objectivity. You are right. Time is our most precious resource. Your post is a good reminder to be intentional about we spend our life.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I cannot escape the news. My husband is constantly watching it. I often go outside or stick my earphones on and listen to music on my MP3 player. An escape of sorts. I don’t think watching the chaos on the news helps anyone. This post says it all. Thanks for sharing this Beth.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think it is good to be informed, just not overdone. I recently pulled the plug on cable and found I can receive 60 free channels with an antenna! Free. I also have Roku that gives me some free channels. I miss my Fox News, but not the cable bill.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Nice post today, Beth. Something I heard several years ago was to the effect of “if you can do it in less than 2 minutes, do it now.” I practiced that for a while, and it was very helpful. I have revived it of late, due to putting things off until they take a lot more time than it would to use the 2 minute rule. I think that is true of media and news consumption, too. I am getting better at reading the headlines and making a conscious decision if it will be helpful or useful. I spend far less time on the news in the mornings, though I do still want to know what has happened in the world since I went to bed last night. I gave up social media (other than my selective blog reading) long ago.

        Thanks for the reminder to be intentional!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. A similar saying (that I have put aside and need to renew) is “Do it, Do it right, Do it right now”. I am also becoming a headline reader, works much better!

        Liked by 1 person

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