I love how Rancho La Puerta encourages guests to take a digital detox by not having wifi or TV in the casitas, and kindly requesting that guests only use cell phones in designated areas. The disconnection from digital devices frees up mental and physical space for guests, and this gives them time to connect with their minds, bodies and spirits.
Though I feel incredible when I stay at The Ranch, I still love to consume information on digital platforms. I am addicted to blogs, my email inbox is full of newsletters, and YouTube videos beckon me. Yet on days when I read my entire Twitter feed, view all my friend’s Facebook updates, and watch a TV show, I suffer from information overload. Instead of absorbing and reflecting on the information I consume, ideas swirl around in my mind and I feel overwhelmed.
Though it’s unrealistic for me to completely avoid screen time, I can apply the Ranch’s philosophy of moderation to my life. My own ideas of how to bring The Ranch home are straightforward and promote balance.
Three Easy Steps to Manage Information Overload
1. Reevaluate Your Media Priorities
The media you consume should serve a purpose in your life. Take time to unsubscribe from unnecessary emails, unfollow people on social media who bring you down and avoid movies and TV shows that don’t fulfill you.
2. Plan your Time
Decide how much media you want to consume each day and stick to a schedule. I only spend one hour of personal time on the Internet per weekday, and a couple of hours on the weekend. This is a huge contrast to my past when I could get sucked into the Internet for hours at a time.
3. Avoid Multitasking
For example, do not browse the Internet or check your email while you are in a meeting, on a phone call or watching TV.
After I implemented these basic action steps into my life I gained extra time and mental space. I no longer feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of articles and shows I miss out on due to time constraints – rather I feel content with what I do read, watch and listen to. I’ve also noticed that I understand news articles better and seem to learn and retain more information. Best of all, I feel a sense of balance in my mind, body and spirit. If you suffer from information overload, I hope you find these Ranch inspired tips useful.