You really can have too much of a good thing.
A side effect of having the world at your fingertips is information overload. With every gadget and gizmo connected to each other, you can literally find any information you need with just a few clicks or taps or swipes. That’s pretty amazing and a fine way to make the world a better place with all the understanding and critical thinking it brings. But we’re not computers, and it’s easy to get overloaded.
My phone can tell me whatever stupid thing some politician said this morning (as well as the stupid things everyone else had to say about it) or how the next phone we’ll be buying is missing a headphone jack or might not have 3D touch or that World of Warcraft gold is worth more than Venezuelan currency. It can also tell me what a great time friends had at the park or that the movie I wanted to see really sucks according to some guy I don’t know who is paid to tell me movies suck. Then it gives me an avenue to add to the noise and voice my level of approval and/or astonishment about it all.
My phones tells me what I need to know as well as a ton of stuff I don’t.
This is great stuff. Whether we find it all informative or entertaining, or both, it’s pretty cool to be part of a worldwide discussion about politics or movies or World of Warcraft gold and its economic impact. But eventually, we all get stressed because it becomes too much. This can and will have an effect. We’ve all seen that person we know have a spectacular meltdown over the dumbest shit. Sometimes, we’ve been that person melting down. Everyone has a breaking point when the noise becomes more than we can filter. But there’s an easy way to break the cycle.
The power button.
We can’t get away from stress. It’s easy to say that these are stressful times and things will get better, but that’s a lie. Times have always been stressful and we’ve been told things will always get better, but that ain’t happening. Tomorrow will bring new problems and worries to go along with them, and we’ll always have good reason to be concerned about the world around us. People in the U.S. are worried about health care and people in Venezuela are worried about economic collapse and people in Syria are worried about getting killed. These are important issues we all should be thinking about and discussing, and if you’re directly affected it’s natural to be afraid. It’s also natural for anyone to feel hopeless or compassionate or angry. Or a mixture of the three.
Just don’t get so consumed from the sidelines that you stop making things better. And when the unimportant noise tries to suck you in, know when to say enough is enough and turn it off for a while.
Information can be addictive. So can the technology that delivers it. Do yourself a favor and shut it all down once in a while. Facebook will still be there when you come back.