Before I began this series of installments, I was easily distracted. I fell down rabbit holes. I spent far too much time clicking around and looking at cute/funny/easy things that didn’t challenge me, and not enough time reading in-depth articles, researching things I’m truly interested in, thinking about what I’d seen and read, or actively doing something that didn’t even include my computer or the internet whatsoever. I know that this is sort of the standard for many people these days, and I suppose that’s okay if you don’t have many hobbies or interests or goals for yourself that will take time to accomplish, but I have all of those things in spades and I felt like I was doing myself a terrible disservice by wasting my own time.
I hoped that the act of processing and summarizing my hours spent online would help me focus, and I’m happy to report that it’s actually working. Last week marked a turning point for me; I could feel a difference in the way I was interacting with the internet. I am spending less time looking, and more time thinking and doing. I can now quickly identify what sort of thing I’m looking at it, sort it properly, and get on to other things. It’s either stuff I need to know in the moment but don’t need to save, stuff that can go onto my Pinterest or my list of places to go on Atlas Obscura, or something I can look up again later when I actually need it. A great deal of stuff, it turns out, falls into that last category. I am a little shocked to discover that I am a hoarder. Of websites. Of information and visual stimulus. Because I was always thinking that I never knew when I might need that article on raising emus or outsider art or whatever, so I should probably bookmark that or just leave it open in a tab for like two weeks, without ever looking at it again.
Out of everything I saw over the past week and some change, I sorted everything into its place and emerged with just two ideas that intrigued me to the point where I wanted to explore them more on my own. I’m going to break these out into two separate posts, because each idea deserves to have its own space. The first is about human potential, and the second is about how we spend our time on this earth. I can’t promise that I will treat either subject with the finesse it deserves, as I am still rewiring my brain so that it’s able to think complex thoughts for long periods without needing a Facebook break. (Now that I’m on this path I’m starting to realize how much I’ve allowed my internet habits to erode my brain.) But at any rate, the next two posts should be a good exercise for me.