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"I hate the internet for what it brings out in me" - Thoughts on Conquering Distraction

I received a thought-provoking email from a reader about the nature of the internet. Here's the key quote that I think many people with empathize with:

I feel like a big luddite for saying this, but I hate the internet for what it brings out in me.

... I am trying to deal with what can only be described as an addiction.

Addiction to high-stimulation-distraction is quite common for intelligent people in the modern era. Surfing the internet, video games, things like that. There's sort of a natural selection websites go through, where the more addicting sites win out and spread and take marketshare and mindshare away from less addicting sites. Paul Graham wrote about this in, "The Acceleration of Addictiveness."

Three key thoughts for you, and then I'll share some of my experience with it -

Are your negative thoughts getting you down? Then read this

On The Art of Sanity

Do you find yourself constantly taking inventory of your life, your mood, your health? “Am I happy?” “I don't feel well!” , “I m tired.” Or the insidious “Why did he look at me that way” “ no one likes me”

As soon as we start thinking these kind of thoughts our mood drops and we tend to isolate our self and it becomes a part of our story. And it repeats itself until we believe it.

Have you ever noticed that as soon as you start analyzing or rating your performance while in a social situation your freeness, spontaneity and creativity disappear? That’s because your brain switches into a different mode of thinking, what I call computer thinking.

Computer thinking is an analytical narrow style of thinking that processes data. It has a proper place in our mental toolbox. But it should be used only when it’s skills are specifically needed.

If you spend time analyzing why “no one likes me,” your analytical mind will produce a lot of answers and probably most of them will reinforce the fear that “no one likes me.” It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

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