I just finished reading a fantastic article about protecting your time from information overload. Read this excerpt, and tell me you haven’t thought this to yourself:
I see someone else do something, and I think, “How interesting.”
That becomes “If they can do it, maybe I could do it.”
And somehow in my brain that morphs into, “and maybe I should do it.”
And before you know it, you have a dozen great ideas….and a bewildered, somewhat stressed feeling about where to start. This article resonated with me because I recognize this information overload all over in my life, and it gives me a great feeling of calm to take action to try to reduce it. Over the past couple of years, I have made a point to invest time editing in hopes of limiting the chaos around me to a manageable quantity that I can actually enjoy.
- I’ve edited my wardrobe, as you can see here. Even though there’s less in my closet, it’s honestly easier to find something to wear.
- I cancelled 2 newspapers and all 20 catalogs I used to receive in the mail (but did not actually read). I honestly don’t know how I came to get so many…but one day I looked at the pile in the recycling, and decided I didn’t want to waste the paper (or my time) on them anymore. (If you’re looking to do the same thing, grab your stack of catalogs and go to this website. Makes it much easier than doing one by one.)
- I’ve reduced the number of songs on my mp3 player by half. I used to collect album after album, but would routinely skip the mediocre songs to get to the ones I wanted to hear. Then I axed the mediocre ones completely…and now I love my music collection.
- I’m currently working on taming my recipe collection, and am trying to stop collecting new ones until I have a more reasonable number; I have a binder full of magazine clippings, a folder of hand-me-downs from my grandma and a board on Pinterest of things I want to try. (Sometimes, I feel like it’s hopeless. I love food too much. But I press on.)
- I’m planning to spend some time on Pinterest in the next few evenings curating my boards so they only contain my absolute favorite ideas, items and recipes. At this moment, I have 1,523 pins. That’s crazy! And overwhelming. I can definitely afford to weed out the so-so items I’ve pinned so it’s easier to find the great inspiration when I need it.
While it’s a something of a miracle to have almost unlimited access to ideas, songs, recipes and stuff….it’s also empowering to create your own limits and decide where you truly want to direct your attention.