Table of contents:

"Attention diet": how to consume content correctly so as not to spoil your life
"Attention diet": how to consume content correctly so as not to spoil your life

Four rules that will free you up a lot of time and clear your thoughts of nonsense.

"Attention diet": how to consume content correctly so as not to spoil your life
"Attention diet": how to consume content correctly so as not to spoil your life

Why do you need such a "diet"

While I was jotting down this article, I checked Twitter three times and my email twice. I answered four emails, went to Slack, and sent SMS to two people. I was stuck on YouTube for about half an hour, and I checked the rating of my books on Amazon probably three thousand times.

During work, which should have taken only 20 minutes, I interrupted myself with a manic obsession. And it's not just the extra time spent: I lost my mind, which caused the quality of the text to deteriorate, which means that later I had to reread and correct it more times.

Moreover, these distractions generated anxiety. While doing other things, I was worried that I was not working, and during work I was worried that I was missing important messages and news. As a result, the process of writing the article itself became unpleasant and seemed more tedious.

I think this: if you and I did not agree on a call and I do not expect urgent news from you, then I don’t want to talk to you. Nothing personal.

Now about blocking. It's easiest for iPhone owners: they can temporarily restrict access to some applications using Parental Controls. For Android, the best app in my experience is Help Me Focus. With it, you can choose which applications and on which days of the week to block.

Set timers for outlets

This is an option for hardcore fans. Install such timers in sockets and configure them so that at a certain time of the day or on a designated day of the week, they stop supplying current. Now it depends on you exactly when your Wi-Fi router, TV or game console will work.

Of course, ideally, you would need to cope with work and affairs during the day, and not resort to such tight control methods in the evening. But, as the saying goes, desperate times call for desperate measures. For example, I tend to get involved in computer games. Last year I did well. But when I start to sit up for the game again until four in the morning, I will definitely use this trick.

What objections are not worth reacting to

I'm going to die of boredom

You will not die. Remember how in childhood you complained to your mother that you were bored, and she only shrugged her shoulders in response and said that this was your problem. Usually the most interesting thing happened after that. You imagined that the sofa is a spaceship. And you need to escape from it so that evil aliens (in this case, mom) will not notice you. Or they invented fantastic creatures and painted them. Or they would go outside and play games with other bored children.

If need is the mother of ingenuity, then boredom is its father.

It gives rise to creative impulses and actions. We forgot about it. When you have a smartphone, social networks, computer games and TV shows, the brain has no time to get bored, which means there is no time to create. And live communication ceases to seem so important. Indeed, why meet and communicate with neighbors when you can watch Sex and the City for the eighth time?

I'll miss so much

In any case, you have always missed something and will miss something. It didn't bother you before because you didn't know you were missing something. Or it was something unimportant to you. Social media has ruined such tranquility. In them you learn about everything that is happening around.

And because of them, it seems to you that what is happening is more important than it really is. The result is a constant fear of missing out on something important. When you get rid of unnecessary social media, you get rid of this fear.

90% of the most important life experiences are right in front of you. An attentional diet will help you stop distracting from them (you used to do this on social media) and finally notice them. Quality is more important than quantity, remind yourself of this.

I must be able to control myself by willpower

It's amazing how many people say that. A noble impulse, but completely wrong.

Imagine that a person who wants to lose 10 kilograms fills the refrigerator with cakes, ice cream, pizza and says, "It's okay, I must have enough willpower not to eat all this." To count on it in a situation like this is crazy. We easily succumb to temptations, so everyone who wants to change their diet knows: first of all, you need to get rid of junk food.

If you want to wake up at six in the morning, you set the alarm (or even two). If you want to call your parents more often, stick a sticker in a prominent place or create reminders on your calendar. If you want to exercise more, hire a coach or go to the gym with a friend. Why should attention be different?

The attention diet is needed to create an environment that promotes healthy habits.

If you had enough willpower, you wouldn't be reading this article. If you are still with me, then you and I have the same problem. Hell, I bet you got distracted between paragraphs and logged into social media!

Well, pull yourself together. It's time to deal with this. Let's do it together. Better yet, find a friend with whom you go on such a diet at the same time. It will be easier and more fun. And when one of you wants to have a serial binge, arrange to meet and do something interesting together.