Derek Sivers on disconnecting

“If you asked people in 1989 what they needed to make their life better, it was unlikely that they would have said a decentralized network of information nodes that are linked using hypertext.”

Here we are — addicted to this thing called the Internet. According to CNN, info fatigue is killing us. Why do we need to know everything?

Internet connectedness also thwarts our creativity. As Derek Sivers writes in his latest blog post:

“Silence is a great canvas for your thoughts.”

Sivers made over 50 songs one summer and started CD Baby another — all because he decided to unplug and instead play with boredom.

Your biggest contributions in life come offline when you devote hours of extended focus to achieve flow. If you can delay the gratification of social media, you can make more stuff.

Consider making a “to don't” list to discipline your focus. Note the things you should avoid like checking your email and messages as soon as you get up. Make a filter on Twitter that excludes all things “Trump” so you do not get sidetracked into blistering anxiety.

The greatest challenge in disconnecting is that our devices are also are creative palettes. People use their phones to write, take and edit photos, and make music. The propensity for distraction is a thumb swipe away.

The Internet is both a gift and curse. Its pervasiveness inhibits focus but distributes our creative output at the same time. Use it wisely.

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Published by Wells Baum

A daily blogger who connects the dots between arts and life.

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