When it comes to food and content, we consume way too much than we need. While the former makes you fat, the latter just makes you constipated. There’s just too much information out there! (And too much food too!) So much so that we’ve reached a point where it’s important to set your priorities straight — to consume or not to?
Now, if you’re obese or overweight you know exactly what to do. But if you’re constipated with information overload cutting down on content doesn’t sound like an appealing idea. The fear-of-missing-out (FOMO) is for real! But like all the great things in life, you’ve got to make a choice and move on before things get serious. (Well, your brain my explode to begin with.)
I believe cutting down on your content consumption is the way to go in 2019 and beyond. We’ve got way too much of it. And it’s not stopping anytime soon. I think as sane people, it’s our responsibility to be our own curators and be picky about what the content we consume. That would mean a lot less feeds in your RSS reader (or whatever you use to get all that content together). A lot less emails you read, particularly the ones that don’t arrive in your inbox. And definitely, a lot less books you’re going to read (if you’re the type that reads one book after the other).
Now, I’m not suggesting you should read less. Definitely not. You should read. Probably more than you are right now. But read less as in quantity but more as in quality. Instead of reading a 100 blog posts/feeds every day, why not list down the 20 blogs that you actually admire and just read them? Reading 100 books a year is a great goal (many of my friends have that as a goal this year) but how many of them are you actually going to use? As in take the key learnings and implement in your life or business? Why not try 20 books on one topic and carve out an implementation plan based on your research? That’ll be something because now you’ll not just have a perspective but real-life experience to validate others and your findings.
I think we spend an insane amount of time volumes of content. Most of which isn’t useful or just mere entertainment. I would be more conscious about this practice because we’re investing a chunk of our precious time, which I would rather invest in something that’s valuable to my learning than give me a heightened sense of entertainment.
This shift towards implementation will force you to be more deliberate and careful about what you read because you’re (finally) putting the information to it’s ultimate test — in your life. The results will be phenomenal! I promise. For starters, try these ideas:
- Listen to one of your favorite audiobooks 10 times over the next 12 week
- Read one of your favorite non-fiction (or fiction, particularly if you’re into writing or a wannabe novelist) book 10 times over the next 6 months
- Cut down on your content sources and just consume from 20 of your favorite blogs/sources that you know you’ll thoroughly enjoy
- Instead of Google News or Reuters or Associated press, try curated newsletters that give you the best of the best news (the stuff that you should care) from across the world right to your inbox. Restrict yourself to no more than 3-5 sources. (Most of the content would be repetitive but that’s alright because you’re not getting mere news but awesome perspective from the lens of the curators.)
- If you’re into videos — curate a playlist or just watch one program (that has a focus into your primary vocation/profession) at least a dozen times. Take notes. And see how your perspective changes by the time you watch it the 12th time. Observe how you address that same topic when you’re in conversation with others.
Think of this as an experiment for the next 10-12 weeks. If you don’t like it, go back to your old ways. If you do, teach others on how to do it. You just might change their lives.