You are living in a society that is doing more and more on electronic devices. You may not be reading online from a desktop computer as they are becoming outdated fast. You might be reading this from your i-phone or tablet while you’re on the ‘go’ or even while sitting at a pool or beach.
Times have changed.
Everything is on the computer both online and offline. You might pay your bills online, read a book on an electronic device, you might even read your Bible online. On the other hand, you might have forgotten to read your Bible because you checked into Facebook before getting out of bed!!
In the course of the past week, I have read many posts, interacted on Facebook, Google +, and Pinterest. I read an e-book twice and learned many new technical skills, became frustrated at the technical skills I don’t yet possess, and basically went into information overload today!!
Have you experienced information overload?
What course of action did you take?
Take this test to see if you’ve reached overload:
Information Overload Test (by Judith Kowles)
Tally up your points. 1 point for each “yes”
- 1-5 that you answered “yes” – you have good computer coping skills!! What is your secret? Share in the comments as we ALL want to know!!
- 5-10 “yes’es” - Not too bad. You are balancing your computer time with offline time fairly well. Tell us how in the comments.
- 11-15 “yes’es” – You need some help!! My “5 Tips for Clearing Information Overload” will help you.
- 16-21 “yes’es” - YOU have a problem!! Get off the computer RIGHT NOW and go to the park, pool, beach, river, and R-E-L-A-X and CLEARLY you have information overload!! Read my 5 Tips!!
- Do you go to Facebook (or one of your other social media platforms) first thing in the morning before making your bed or taking a shower?
- Do you start scrolling down through your newsfeed on Facebook and forget why you got online in the first place?
- On Facebook, do you feel obligated to listen to every single music or video clip even though you think they are ridiculous?
- Do you have 6-8 email accounts that are jam-packed with pending or unanswered mail? (I have 5 email accounts, so this is not unrealistic.)
- When you open your inbox, do you become anxious with “information overload” before you even open the email?
- Do you lose track of time on Twitter, Google +, Facebook, or Pinterest as you stress over the avalanche of twaddle?
- Do you find yourself compulsively eating junk food while reading online?
- Are you becoming sadly behind on your dishes, paper-clutter, laundry, and undone projects, as you spend increasing amounts of time online?
- Are you irritable with your husband and children? Snappy? Can’t look away from the screen when they talk to you?
- Are you playing Facebook games?
- Do you become frustrated from the electronic information you need to process daily?
- Do you become overwhelmed because you can’t get to the blogs or e-books you’d really prefer to process?
- Do you sit at your computer for more than an hour without getting up?
- Do you constantly check into your social media accounts and email (even in the bathroom) because you are afraid you’ll get behind?
- Are you subscribed to more blogs than you can possibly read and you feel bad when you finally delete them?
- Has reading your Bible become dull and so boring that you tire after reading 2-3 verses?
- Before making a decision, do you check with your online friends first before asking God for wisdom?
- Do you read so many posts that you are skimming and hardly reading them, feeling like you have to comment, “Like” and “+1″ all those in your niche?
- Is your Kindle app full of books you will never have time to read because you are inundated with the ever-flowing avalanche of electronic information??
- Did you forget to hydrate with 8 glasses of water? Electronic devices dehydrate you. Did you realize that?
- When you make it to the end of your day, do you feel really guilty that too much time was wasted online and you didn’t live real life?
Compared to 20 years ago, we are spending more and more time on the computer. In many ways that is unavoidable as banking, filing systems like Evernote, and online businesses are all housed within the screen.
The problem is that we are not balancing our time. We are accountable to God for how we are spending our time; someday we will give an answer for our motives and use of it.
Many women are spending too much time on social media and are neglecting their time alone with God; which then plays out in their relationship with their husband and children.
5 Tips to Clear Information Overload
- Do not feel bad for not reading every email and blog post word for word. You will never get “caught up” so don’t bother trying.
- Zero out ALL email accounts each night before closing out your day. Process all emails into filters, or read them, then archive what you have finished and delete the rest.
- Set time limits for each task you do. Don’t allow yourself to lose track of time.
- Know when to close your laptop and get outside. When you get to the point that you can no longer concentrate or think, you have reached information overload and you need to clear your head. Today, I reached that point and I drove 3 miles to the river and took a walk. The fresh 82F heat was refreshing and cleared my information overload, so that I was able to come home and make a delicious supper and get back to writing.
- Know when you need to scale back on social media and other online commitments. Maybe you need to write less or take a blogging break!!