The Internet Is Eroding Our Focus

We need to think better, not more or faster. This is very well covered in this video from Epipheo.tv that talks with Nicholas Carr, the author of The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains. He talks about how the internet is short circuiting the ability of our brains to consolidate the memories in our short term working memory and transfer them to our long term memory. That transfer is what prepares that new information, so that we can connect it with all the information we already know and allow us to make logical connections. If memory consolidation is disrupted, it reduces our ability to think creatively and conceptually.

The advice in the video is that we need to better focus our attention for at least a portion of our day for memory consolidation to have a better opportunity to function. My takeaway is that on top of that, we need to reduce the distractions that constantly interrupt our thoughts in the form of texts, application notifications on our computers and phones and constantly open social networks. We need to use the conveniences of the internet on our terms at predetermined times rather than whenever they choose to interrupt us.  That way, those conveniences can help us acquire knowledge instead of keeping us from doing so in a meaningful way. Definitely check out the video below. It’s interesting and definitely fits into my self improvement are of the week, which is “focus”.

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