Tonight I was excited about writing a blog post for one of my other blogs. As I wrote, getting more and more enthusiastic about the thoughts flowing from my brain, I kept getting interrupted by technology distractions (email messages from FaceBook friends and my buzzing BlackBerry). Finally, I turned off email, flipped the BlackBerry upside down outside its case and returned to my blog post.
I have a strong feeling that when we claim we don’t have time in life to do things, it’s not because we truly lack time. It’s because we allow technology to rule our lives. Twitter is a good example of technology gone bonkers. If you use Twitter, like I do, it can become addictive, even distracting, taking precious hours of our time better spent doing something more important.
Twitter is like a stock exchange’s electronic board attacking our eyes and minds with stock price and index information. While Twitter has its benefits, you have to search Tweets in the search box or use a tool like TweetDeck to find useful, relevant personal or business information. Otherwise, it’s a terrible distraction and waste of time.
FaceBook can equally distract us with its insistent email messages about friends who’ve responded to comments we’ve written online. On top of reminders to post messages, Facebook has created an increasing number of surveys, birthday reminders and other messages that clutter our lives like advertising.
Yes I realize I can turn off email reminders and set communication preferences, but those of us who use LinkedIn, FaceBook and other social and business sites have created an information quagmire that’s unrelenting. Social media sites do provide connections to other people, but enough is enough.
Next time you’re working on something important, focus completely on the task at hand and silence the Internet invaders that demand attention and cloud our minds.