Advertising
Advertising

The Trouble Is You Think You Have Time

The Trouble Is You Think You Have Time

Yes, we all think we have time to get things done, but we always do the same thing: we procrastinate. We believe that we can do it at the last minute. Then, problems hit. All of us have dealt with this: many, many nights of trying to finish that article or design that site or copywrite that brochure or do whatever we need to do.

“But I do have time, I can get things done”. Wrong. You have no time unless you plan how to use it wisely. We keep on thinking like this, leading us to a no-end point. It is always the same. We procrastinate, we believe that we have time and we panic when we reach the deadline and have nothing done. Why? Why don’t we just finish it before it needs to be done? It is just a matter of habits.

Without a change, we are sentenced to live a life where the only time when you are calm is…never. A life with supercharged schedules, running every day. Nights without sleeping, days without rest. A life without a plan is like a ship adrift. We’ll never know our next step.

Advertising

Why? Because we think we can make it, but in the middle of the day we lose direction and the whole world is against us. We must do things we don’t want to do. Time seems to run, and we are walking behind. No way to win.

We must understand that we have a limited time slot, so we must learn to manage it in order to get the most of it.

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a perfect schedule and get things done at the right time? Of course! It would be a perfect world. But what happens? Why can’t we get things done? Because we need to change our mind. We must acquire the correct habit, if not, we are heading to nowhere.

Advertising

Once we learn to manage our time, it changes our lives. We can take care of the most important things, we do not procrastinate, we have time to spend with our family, we can rest, we enjoy every moment. We do not run anymore. We can think, we can enjoy, we can plan, we can sleep again.

When we learn to handle our time we enjoy every moment as a new one. There is something that the vast majority of us never appreciate. The present moment, the now. This moment. This is due to our bad habit of thinking that we have time, so we waste it. But if we could only take a moment to enjoy the present, we’ll find numerous “invisible” things we had never seen before.

Let’s pretend for a while that you have only 48hs, no more. Would you still procrastinate and waste your time or you would rather find the way to experience every minute? I hope you would try to get the most of every minute. So you would plan what to do, and you would discard the nonsense topics in order to focus on the right direction. That’s the way to do it.

Advertising

Focus, plan, discipline.

You have to be task-oriented, and change how you think about getting things done. You have to stop creating to-do lists and make task lists or objective lists instead.

Let me explain it: When you change your how you think to accept that you must finish a task, you’ll train yourself to get a new and healthy habit. A to-do list means nothing, just a way to write what you should remember; but a task list or objective list forces you to start a task and finish it. Nice, right?

Advertising

Someone told me once “You do not need more time, you need to do the right thing at the exact moment. Once you learn to focus and to plan your day, you’ll gain free times”. And that’s the way to do it.

Should you give it a try? Do you dare to change your mind and improve your life?

Featured photo credit: Chris Florence – CC BY 2.0 License via flickr.com

More by this author

Carlos Alberto Romay

Freelance Writer

lemon tree A Proven And Easy Way To Grow Lemon Tree At Your Home To-do-list post To-Do Lists Will Just Make You Less Productive, Here’s Why Delicious And Healthy Meals That You Can Prep Within 15 Minutes Japanese children cleaning In Japan School Janitors Simply Don’t Exist, Here’s Why time management The Trouble Is You Think You Have Time

Trending in Productivity

1 How to Stop Information Overload 2 7 Natural Memory Boosters That Actually Work for All Ages 3 How to Improve Your Memory: 7 Natural (And Highly Effective) Ways 4 11 Tactics on Increasing Brain Power, Memory, and Motivation 5 How to Use More of Your Brain to Become More Productive and Happy

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on February 21, 2019

How to Stop Information Overload

How to Stop Information Overload

Information overload is a creature that has been growing on the Internet’s back since its beginnings. The bigger the Internet gets, the more information there is. The more quality information we see, the more we want to consume it. The more we want to consume it, the more overloaded we feel.

This has to stop somewhere. And it can.

As the year comes to a close, there’s no time like the present to make the overloading stop.

But before I explain exactly what I mean, let’s discuss information overload in general.

How Serious Is Information Overload?

The sole fact that there’s more and more information published online every single day is not the actual problem. Only the quality information becomes the problem.

This sounds kind of strange…but bear with me.

When we see some half-baked blog posts we don’t even consider reading, we just skip to the next thing. But when we see something truly interesting — maybe even epic — we want to consume it.

We even feel like we have to consume it. And that’s the real problem.

No matter what topic we’re interested in, there are always hundreds of quality blogs publishing entries every single day (or every other day). Not to mention all the forums, message boards, social news sites, and so on.

Advertising

The amount of epic content on the Internet these days is so big that it’s virtually impossible for us to digest it all. But we try anyway.

That’s when we feel overloaded. If you’re not careful, one day you’ll find yourself reading the 15th blog post in a row on some nice WordPress tweaking techniques because you feel that for some reason, “you need to know this.”

Information overload is a plague. There’s no vaccine, there’s no cure. The only thing you have is self-control.

Luckily, you’re not on your own. There are some tips you can follow to protect yourself from information overload and, ultimately, fight it.

But first, admit that information overload is really bad for you.

Why Information Overload Is Bad for You

Information overload stops you from taking action. That’s the biggest problem here.

When you try to consume more and more information every day, you start to notice that even though you’ve been reading tons of articles, watching tons of videos and listening to tons of podcasts, the stream of incoming information seems to be infinite.

Therefore, you convince yourself that you need to be on a constant lookout for new information if you want to be able to accomplish anything in your life, work and/or passion. The final result is that you are consuming way too much information, and taking way too little action because you don’t have enough time for it.

The belief that you need to be on this constant lookout for information is just not true.

Advertising

You don’t need every piece of advice possible to live your life, do your work or enjoy your passion.

How to Stop Information Overload (And Start to Achieve More)

So how to recognize the portion of information that you really need? Start with setting goals.

1. Set Your Goals

If you don’t have your goals put in place, you’ll be just running around grabbing every possible advice and thinking that it’s “just what you’ve been looking for.”

Setting goals is a much more profound task than just a way to get rid of information overload. Now by “goals” I don’t mean things like “get rich, have kids, and live a good life”. I mean something much more within your immediate grasp. Something that can be achieved in the near future — like within a month (or a year) at most.

Basically, something that you want to attract to your life, and you already have some plan on how you’re going to make it happen. So no hopes and dreams, just actionable, precise goals.

Then once you have your goals, they become a set of strategies and tactics you need to act upon.

2. Know What to Skip When Facing New Information

Once you have your goals, plans, strategies and tasks, you can use them to decide what information is really crucial.

First of all, if the information you’re about to read has nothing to do with your current goals and plans, then skip it. You don’t need it.

If it does, then ask yourself these questions:

Advertising

  • Will you be able to put this information into action immediately?
  • Does it have the potential to maybe alter your nearest actions/tasks?
  • Is it so incredible that you absolutely need to take action on it right away?

If the information is not actionable in a day or two, then skip it.

(You’ll forget about it anyway.)

And that’s basically it. Digest only what can be used immediately. If you have a task that you need to do, consume only the information necessary for getting this one task done, nothing more.

You need to be focused in order to have clear judgment, and be able to decide whether some piece of information is mandatory or redundant.

Self-control comes handy too. It’s quite easy to convince yourself that you really need something just because of poor self-control. Try to fight this temptation, and be as ruthless about it as possible – if the information is not matching your goals and plans, and you can’t take action on it in the near future, then SKIP IT.

3. Be Aware of the Minimal Effective Dose

There’s a thing called the MED – Minimal Effective Dose. I was first introduced to this idea by Tim Ferriss. In his book The 4-Hour BodyTim illustrates the minimal effective dose by talking about medical drugs.

Everybody knows that every pill has a MED, and after that specific dose, no other positive effects occur, only some negative side effects if you overdose big.

Consuming information is somewhat similar. You need just a precise amount of it to help you to achieve your goals and put your plans into life.

Everything more than that amount won’t improve your results any further. And if you try to consume too much of it, it will eventually stop you from taking any action altogether.

Advertising

4. Don’t Procrastinate by Consuming More Information

Probably one of the most common causes of consuming ridiculous amounts of information is the need to procrastinate. By reading yet another article, we often feel that we are indeed working, and that we’re doing something good – we’re learning, which in result will make us a more complete and educated person.

This is just self-deception. The truth is we’re simply procrastinating. We don’t feel like doing what really needs to be done – the important stuff – so instead we find something else, and convince ourselves that “that thing” is equally important. Which is just not true.

Don’t consume information just for the sake of it. It gets you nowhere.

The focus of this article is not on how to stop procrastinating, but if you’re having such issue, I recommend you read this:

Procrastination – A Step-By-Step Guide to Stop Procrastinating

Summing It Up

As you can see, information overload can be a real problem and it can have a sever impact on your productivity and overall performance.

I know I have had my share of problems with it (and probably still have from time to time). But creating this simple set of rules helps me to fight it, and to keep my lizard brain from taking over.

I hope it helps you too, especially as we head into a new year with a new chance at setting ourselves up for success.

More Resources About Boosting Brain Power

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Read Next