You might have heard this quote that goes like this:
"You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with."
- Jim Rohn.
Now as we live in this era of information overload, where we can access any bit of information within a matter of seconds we could say that:
You become the Content you Consume and that is really powerful.
To make it more clear,
You become the people you talk to, the TV you watch, the music you listen to, the video games you play, and the things you read.
The content that you watch is like food for your brain, the way the food that you consume has an impact on your body and so is the content you consume has an impact on your mind.
1. NEGATIVE CONTENT
In my opinion, the most common source of negative content is the news.
The reason is more people tend to watch their content for a longer duration and so they try to exaggerate reality and mostly focus on the bad things.
And naturally, our brains are also more drawn towards negativity, so more people read or watch such latest breaking stories.
Not only negative content makes you feel negative, by sparking sadness or anger, but it can lead to false understandings or fears.
I'm not saying that bad things don't happen, but the way these bad things are shown and the way the reality is twisted for better search rankings(or TRP) is very dangerous and can also be detrimental to your mental health.
It's important to be aware of things going around you but also mind that that's not the entire truth that you've seen in just a few minutes of news.
2. ENTERTAINMENT, BUT MINDLESS CONTENT
I still can't believe how many hours of my life I wasted watching pointless reality shows and series.
Now I don't watch TV, but watching entertaining content is good and it also serves as a little mind "break" and reduces stress in us other than that they literally offer no value to you.
Nowadays with short-form content like IG Reels, Youtube Shorts, TikTok, etc. people started consuming this content heavily and are continuously scrolling through the content which is termed as "DoomScrolling".
All this content is designed to keep you watching, reducing your attention span and they're honestly mind-numbing.
Now as the attention span of humans is decreasing with the increase in short-form content's popularity, people are unable to focus and study long-form content like books, articles, etc.
Many content creators (especially educational) have told that they aren't happy in educating their audience in just under one min. with no clear explanation of the complete concept.
As I mentioned above, information is endless and is just one search away from us,
No matter what type of content you're consuming, you can over-consume and not even implement a single thing you learned.
People nowadays just watch a dozen Videos, Reels, Shorts on Social Media on a specific topic and call themselves well aware and educated in that topic.
But in reality, education is different from content consumption.
You might be reading dozens of articles on personal development or listening to hundreds of educational podcasts may be better than the content mentioned earlier, but too much can still be a problem.
The problem, with overconsumption of positive/educational content, is that you are still exposing yourself to over-simulation.
Small exercise that might help:
- Try to recap, summarize and make a note of the content you consumed.
- Then try to apply the knowledge, ideas.
4. MAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF
To be honest, even I consume a lot of information.
However, I make sure to have a few moments of silence and spend some time observing my thoughts and ideas.
I then try to make a note of those thoughts and ideas.
While I try to avoid watching TV, I still try to get some news from articles as it takes very little time to read, compared to watching live news + advertisements + exaggerated negative content.
I would suggest everyone, give yourself a break, observe your thoughts, try to introspect yourself, and also write them in a journal.
A few actionable steps that I want you to do to help yourself:
- Go to your social media platforms (Insta, Youtube, Facebook, etc.)
- Try to Unfollow, Unsubscribe all the pages, channels that add no value, and create Negative content.
- Also Unfollow pages, creators that create too much motivational content
(unpopular opinion) because you might overconsume their content and take less actionable steps.
- If you still find such content then click on Report/Not Interested to let the algorithm know that you aren't interested in that content anymore.
- Also, the best thing to do is to disable the notifications to prevent yourself from unnecessary distractions.
Be as careful of what you put into your mind through social media as what you put into your body through food.
Your social media homepage is called a "Feed" for a reason.