Social media killed my attention span. This blog post is literally what it says on the tin. I am dealing with the fact that I need to have a serious rehabilitation for my concentration! Here’s how social media killed my attention span.
We are constantly consuming media. From television shows to Youtube videos to quick bursts of news on Snapchat, I am always reaching for my phone. I reach for it to kill time. I reach for it to procrastinate – usually from a task that wants me to focus my attention for longer than a few minutes. We are constantly getting hits from social media, news alerts and notifications. Anything that can be thought about, has been written about and I am reading it. It’s an addiction.
Social media gives me an abundance of knowledge and information at an alarming rate. I can understand politics in five minutes, change a tire with a Google search and receive a thousand people’s points of view in minutes. What we consume online, we are consuming at such a quick rate that we do not need to have any sort of practical attention span. We live fast, read fast, dine fast, rush. Because I can get so much in so little time, I am far more likely to be found scrolling through my phone than I am to be investing my time in something else, such as a film or a book.
It shames me to admit that I am an aimless scroller. When I am busy with work or with travel, I don’t even think about my phone, much less feel the need to pick it up. But when I do have time – and time is a very precious commodity to have, I am frivolous with it. I waste it away by endlessly scrolling my phone. The reality is that I don’t need to know where Sarah ate brunch and I don’t need to see another photo of someone’s baby. I’m not even getting anything out of this aimless scrolling and I feel an absolute sense of dread when I realise an hour has flown by.
Inability to focus on anything long-term
My attention span has been eaten up by social media. I no longer see the point in investing a large amount of time in something to learn as much as I could in ten minutes on my phone. The problem is that there is no sense of accomplishment in social media. It’s not found in likes or retweets and followers. We all need to do something, once in a while, that demands more than a few minutes of concentration, we need to experience some toil and then feel accomplished when we make progress. It’s healthy for us to have these longer-term goals and achievements! I’m making an effort to read a book though to the end. To make something creative and work on it bit by bit each day. Attention spans can be exercised and increased!
I’m not the only person guilty of this and it’s never too late to do something about it! The first step to change is admitting that you need to change, right?