Sounds like science fiction, doesn’t it? Like going to the mail box at the curb and finding only handwritten letters. The stuff of fairy tales.
But this was real. The side effect of a New Year-inspired effort to rid my inbox of all of the various unread subscriptions that have been cluttering the scenery for far too long. Fifteen (15!) versions of Living Social, daily sale flyers from every store I have ever visited, LinkedIn updates from groups I visited once – all gone.
It was cleansing, to say the least.
It was hard to cut the cord on some of them. Several of the newsletters contained some excellent content. Some of the reminders are truly valid and useful. I do enjoy a good sale, or half-price rock climbing expedition (not that I’ve ever been on one – but the idea is attractive.)
The problem is that in the midst of the cluttered heap of spam and bacn (better than spam, not as good as personal email), it was impossible to focus on anything at all.
Things feel strangely empty in my mailbox – like the living room now that the holiday decorations are put away. But the space makes it so much easier to focus on actually reading the things that made the cut.
I am vowing to be more judicious about what I sign up for going forward, although it is challenging to control my desire to know everything all the time. But as with most things, it’s better to focus on a few things that matter instead of being distracted by endless options clouding the scene.
How do you manage information overload and decide what gets your attention?