Overwhelmed by Information Overload

It is said that information is power.  Not so long ago information is scarce and we need to scour the library and hunt down reference material or invest in the Britannica to get the data we want. Information was expensive and was usually outdated.

Now information is abundantly available and very often free, accessible to all and constantly kept up to date. You get loads of information from different authoritative sources from one simple search online. And many would also subscribe to news feeds and alerts for regular updates.

So now you are inundated with information from different sources every day; too much of a good thing and you don’t know what to do with the information overload. And unless and until you make use of the relevant and timely information, that huge amount of feeds and data is not going to be of any benefit to you.

In fact it will overwhelm, distract and stress you out. And on top of that you also get lots of emails and text messages every day. They do not relent but keep you busy and quite frankly drive you crazy.

It is found that information overload costs the US economy about $900 billion a year in lost productivity. That’s a huge amount of waste. So what do you do?

To deal with this sense of overwhelm and work related stress, you need to be selective of the information you allow to enter your inbox and your space. Consider the following for information to serve you well. The need to have the following characteristics:

Relevance – you don’t want everything under the sun. In fact you only need the most relevant bit that will get the job done. The 20% that will solve 80% of your problem. Less is more.  Do not generate unnecessary work related stress. You can be selective in your subscription and the information you pull. The more focus your information the more useful it is.

This is where you may want to consider customized products and services. Let someone else do the research, the filtering and sorting, the rearranging and the design so you get the finished product presented to you streamlined and easy for your consumption.

As far as emails are concerned, you can send unrequested and chain mails straight to the trash. 

Timely – Information you need has to be current and updated. Needs change, trends change, what was true before may not be true now. Make use of RSS feeds and alerts to keep you regularly updated with only the recent and the relevant.  Delete after reading. Unless you have an organized way of filing you are better off searching for the information on demand than wasting more looking through your folders and files for information "stored somewhere".

Information is useless until you apply it; you may already have learned many great principles from CDs, books and reports. If you find yourself saying “I already know that, nothing new” then perhaps it is time to check if you really do know it experientially.

We do not need to learn more new principles until we have started applying the gems we have been exposed to. If we are storing information in our head and not letting that change the way we think and work, we will not reap the desired results. Only changes in action will bring about changes in results.  It may be worthwhile finding out what is preventing the execution. 

To find out what is causing the lack to motivation to take positive action for successful results, you can sign up for a free preview tele call here.  

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