The Internet, Your Brain and Information Overload

Has the internet effected the way you think? Do you suppose your memory and thought processes have become altered due to the time you spend on the internet daily?

Nicholas Carr thinks so. He recently published a highly rated book called The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains

Carr points out the many ways the internet is heavily influencing us. Consider that our internet lifestyle has changed our creativity, our thought processes, our ideas, our memory and even just how we think.

Get this ==> Humans now create as much information in two days as we did from the dawn of civilization all the way up through 2003. (Eric Schmidt, Google)

The same amount of info in TWO DAYS now as we did all total from the very beginning of civilation? Geez, no WONDER we suffer from information overload! Ever feel like you’ve developed adult onset ADD? Maybe it’s actually internet onset ADD, think?

This quick video below is an entertaining summary of how the internet effects our brains.

Internet addiction is real. In fact, you can take this online test to find your level of internet addiction.

Your Guide to the Age of Information: Epipheo.TV Infographic – Truth. Story. Love.

Ways to Manage Internet Overload:
Set aside time blocks daily to be totally ‘unplugged’ from any media. Work in short bursts with breaks in between (for example, 30 minutes work then 10 minute break). Exercise and be in nature. Talk with friends face to face. When sharing meals with friends, resists the urge to pull out a device. Close any tab in your browser not directly related to your current project.

Taking breaks from the digital input regularly will help you have better focus when you are working online.
…and when you DO plug-in, do it with PURPOSE! The internet can be powerful, yet without a PLAN it can be a powerful time waster.

In fact, your ability to succeed has far more to do with how clear your mind is than your marketing. (<== Tweet that).

Can You Relate?Do you find that infomation overload effects your brain? Do you practice specific habits to help stay focused among all the constant chatter of internet noise? Do you make it a point to ‘UNPLUG’ regularly? Please comment below.

Carolan Ross

CFO(Chief Fun Officer) at SoloSpark
Freelance writer, creative soul, solopreneur and former teacher who networks with rebels, visionaries, artists and other square pegs in round holes. I support solopreneurs with copywriting and juggling life and business to SHINE ONLINE!


  1. Alexandria Ingham says

    I regularly turn the emails off from my phone to unplug from everything. There’s just so much going on now and the internet takes over my life. I’ll find myself going deeper and deeper into research without really meaning to–or it adding anything to what I’m trying to write.

    • Carolan Ross says

      Yes, I’m also a chronic researcher and if I don’t unplug now and then, the focus of the project can become muddled.

  2. Amy Scott says

    Wow, the amount of information being created really is mind-blowing! I do make an effort to unplug for several hours in the afternoon (I work at home). I am often online in the evening and I know I should allow more time between computer time and bedtime, but it rarely works out that way! One way I’ve found to be more intentional with my time online is that when I need to switch tasks while at my computer, I actually get up and walk away and identify what I want to work on next, then come back to the computer and get started. That way I don’t end up wasting half an hour on Facebook as a “break”! 🙂

    • Carolan Ross says

      Good idea, Amy! Walking away, then going back with a specific purpose or goal in mind will focus the time spent. I tend to work best in 20-30 minute segments, then get up and walk away – similar to what you do. After about 10 minutes I go back with a specific goal in mind. Repeating this several times a day with actions directed toward goals keeps me sane – and then I don’t feel badly about playing around on Facebook in the evenings.

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