How To Avoid Information Overload

How To Avoid Information Overload



Picture yourself as a survivor, lost in an ocean, and clinging to a tree in order to stay afloat and prevent drowning.


For some people, this is how they feel while in the crux of an era of excessive information.


The advancement in communication technology led us to where we are right now. Undeniably, this advancement accelerates progress, faster than what generations of our ancestors were able to achieve.


The problem is this: man’s capacity to absorb information did not accelerate. Man cannot keep up with the surge of information and this makes him feel overwhelmed. He is drowning in an ocean of information!


You need a help line! You need something that can help you stay afloat while waiting for the rescue team! Here are some tips that can save you from drowning:


  • Stay cool and do not panic. No matter how voluminous and enormous the tide of information coming your way, realize that you did not cause this and should not cause alarm. Neither did anybody else intend this to happen. No particular person is to be blamed or credited for it.


It just happened and it is still happening. It will continue to do so, perhaps at a faster rate, in the future. One development leads to another. New things are discovered every day. It is like a stream that seeks its own direction and level.


  • Be selective. The time needed to absorb most of the available information nowadays far exceeds one’s life expectancy! This fact can make a person feel overwhelmed and literally drown in a pool of information.


To overcome this, be selective. Draw your attention only to information that you find useful, interesting, and worth your time. Look at it this way: You must take advantage of the availability of information and use it to you benefit. Look at information as an opportunity to learn, earn more, and gain more skills.


Treat information like the food you eat. Do not overstuff yourself. Like food, take only the ones that are nutritious for your body. Take only the information that will improve your life physically and enrich you emotionally.


  • Practice analytical thinking. When you’re reading about a specific subject or product, do not take it all in as the truth. Be analytical, especially on items that are commercially inclined. This is not meant to dissuade you from getting interested in them. The idea is to find out if the available information conforms to your intention and needs.


  • Be specific. When you gather information about a subject you need, be specific. Say, you need to search on the internet and type in “how to write”. A number of websites will be made available to you and might make you feel overwhelmed!


Instead, narrow your search by typing “how to write short stories for preschoolers.” This saves time by skipping sites that does not conform to your needs. When you are specific, you get the best available alternatives. Being specific directs you to the experts in the field that interests you.


Remember, treat information like food. Take in only those that are helpful, beneficial and supportive of your purpose. Over stuffing yourself will only make it difficult for you to swim and stay afloat in the sea of information. Manage information wisely!