"Here's a pencil pad. I'm gonna spread some information." - Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, Inspiration Information (a Shuggie Otis cover, obvs)
Much like a diet for weight loss, limiting the intake of information I receive every day is harder than you might think. One week into taking the Information Diet challenge and rescue time is telling me that I spend more time on social networks than 87% of other people using the service.
And an amazing amount of that time is on Facebook! Ugh. But not the most. Friendfeed is my most common distraction which is both surprising and not. Even though I have been trying out Faveous as a way to aggregate social activity I want to remember and, perhaps, go back to -- friendfeed still does this better than everything else that's out there that I've tried. I regularly go back to the site to see what I favorited but didn't read or tweeted that I want to revisit. Plus, even with other services (most notably Google+) that do a lot of the same things, friendfeed is still where my friends go to talk to each other more privately.
So, it's a process. One of the things I did learn this week is how much notifications where guiding my activity. Turning off push notifications on my iPad and phone as well as disabling most desktop notifications on my work laptop has been a great boon to focusing my attention. Now, when I begin a task (which I'm also being more deliberate about tracking now that I'm back to using Astrid), I have to make a deliberate choice to step away from it rather than being pulled away easily by a nudge in the corner of my screen or a flashing light on my iPad.
I now calendar both work and distractions in my daily schedule. I also think a lot more about what my primary activity is and whether or not that means I should close my laptop or iPad and focus on that when I'm at home. The television has been off a lot more in the house this week. I was much more productive at work (and on this blog) than I normally am. I'm also not spending my nights worrying about what didn't get accomplished and I'm finding more time for things like reading and more engaging conversations with Tiffany.
So, you're not likely to see me respond immediately to Words and Hanging with Friends plays these days. Or talk about my obsession with Tiny Tower. This is for the better. You will, however, see me answer personal emails faster as sanebox is making my gmail management a dream.
This coming week I'll be removing facebook from my bookmarks bar. It's, by far, my least satisfying distraction.
Soundtrack to this post: Soul Time! by Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings which I'm enjoying way more than their last full-length.