You’ve got to love information!
The thrill of the chase. The infinite list of topics waiting to be explored. Those ‘Ahah’ moments that can follow. The endless search for knowledge has got to make up a good part of The Meaning of Life .
Too bold a statement?
Maybe, but there is no denying information is everywhere, easily accessible and immediate.
Unfortunately, it’s doing my head in (yes…… literally).
Our good new age friend ‘Google’ has certainly provided us with a seemingly never ending array of information nuggets over the last 15 years or so.
And of course let’s not forget the beauty of books in filling our minds with a good deal of knowledge and inspiring our imaginations to flourish.
‘The key to wisdom is understanding the extent of your own ignorance.’ Socrates
BUT in a saturated information era, I’m feeling more than ever that confused sensation of information overload or as I like to call it ‘Information overkill’.
The quest to know more ‘stuff’ about everything from writing novels to food fermentation, gardening to Stand Up Paddle Boards and of course the random, endless stream of ‘How to…..’ questions, has left me feeling more than a little overwhelmed and frustrated.
It’s gotten to the point where I’ve found myself signing up for, subscribing and inevitably succumbing to a steady selection of web pages, Facebook ‘Shares’ and on-line articles all with the view to ‘helping’ me satiate my appetite for immediate information.
But it’s not working.
There is of course not enough time to trowel through the endless supply of information and yet it’s tempting to want to give it a good crack.
My smart phone as a result, has quickly become an extra appendage, a conversation killer and unfortunately a device that happily sucks my time and attention from the here and now.
More harm than good?
So it’s got me thinking, do I really need ALL this information? And if I do, is it doing me more harm than good?
T.S Eliot made this point precisely when he wrote,
“Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? / Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?”
I say this because at the end of another week sifting through articles, podcasts and subscriber e-mails on ‘How to write better Blogs’ I don’t feel any ‘better’ off.
Definitely submerged in a flood of info! And if anything, it’s building into a torrent of insecurity at just how much more I am yet to learn.
My common sense is starting to tell me that maybe, just maybe writing better blogs will come with time, experience and many fails (yeah, the Ahah moment kicked in late!)
Similarly, the more I read (or skim read these days in an effort to take in MORE), the less I seem to retain. Example……
“Oh, that reminds me of a great article I came across the other day on Information Overload. It made some great point I think about how it’s not new, or it’s a challenge to deal with, or something like that. Really insightful it was. Or hang on, maybe that was the article on Fermentation Overload!”
Yup, it’s all a blur sometimes.
I’m beginning to wonder now if a little bit of patience, personal experience, human interaction and a dash of common sense, might go a long way to rediscovering what actually matters and where to find it.
So now I’m going to unsubscribe to a heap of e-mails, try to avoid the temptation to click on each ‘Share’ or ‘Like’ article on FB and instead, take the time to look out the window a little more. Just to ponder.
Oh! And spend more time reading….FICTION.