Think twice before you post a link

Abstract

This post is about time. It states that time is a scarce and valuable resource we have, and to be able to accomplish any goals in life a person should consider carefully managing it.

Who is this post for?

The information in this post could be applicable to general public, but the more intended audience is people who already have a professional occupation, have family and kids, but still want to allocate some time to think about our place in universe, who we are, where we came from and where we are heading.

Definitions

Before proceeding any further that us define a terminology to be able to use it later.

A content producer is a person or an algorithm that produces useful or useless content on the Internet.

A goal is a thoroughly defined objective with a plan of how to achieve it.

A valuable time is a time that’s left at your own disposal, except for time spent on work, chores and time with friends and family.

An intellectual activity is an activity that is a goal oriented toward thinking about questions of who we are, where we came from and where we are heading etc. and is done during a valuable time.

A disciplined approach is an approach to intellectual activity where it is carried out in a focused and mindful manner.

How goals affect the value of time

To say whether time is valuable or scarce depends on an attitude of a person towards it, namely a person who has no goals in life may think about time as a thing that’s in abundance and doesn’t care how it’s used. On the other hand, a person with defined goals think of a valuable time as a precise resource that should be accounted and measured.

On the total time management side is an example of a Russian biologist Aleksandr Lubischev who accounted all his time, and not only a valuable time. This type of time management is at the very extreme and, apparently, isn’t suitable for most of the people who still want to have a time for the family and friends and other hobbies.

On the opposite side, is a complete carelessness about time and the best example of this behavior is an objectiveless browsing on various kinds of social media, like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram etc. and watching of endless TV series on streaming platforms and YouTube. This type of “time management” is familiar to most of us and I am guilty of this too.

Some practical advice

Note

As I mentioned, this advice could be potentially helpful only to a person with goals, who wants to get most out of available valuable time by applying a disciplined approach toward intellectual activity.

Consider eliminating all social media producers that tend to take all you valuable time.
  • This type of time waste is not only distracting and disorganizing, but it also tends to create a kind of addiction to it that is harmful in its own way.
    • This can be done by completely deleting all non required accounts in social media
    • Or if you have to have them it is possible to unfollow everyone, except for a carefully considered number of contacts who are valuable and do not take your valuable time by sharing useless content.
Consider unsubscribing from all streaming content providers, like Netflix, Prime Video, Disney and YouTube etc.
  • In a similar way to social media, streaming content is addictive and could waste months if not years1 of your valuable time without you noticing this happening.
    • If you have to have watch something to relax, at least you can try watching things related to your favorable intellectual activity topics
Think twice before posting any content on social media platforms
  • Since, most of what other content producers post on social media is useless and waste your valuable time, do not post anything that could potentially waste time of other people, even if they don’t care, and do not value their own time.

To summarize

Time could be a valuable or not depending on what your attitude toward it is, and whether you have defined goals you want to achieve in life. Social media and streaming platforms are the main source of useless and distracting content producers. Be mindful when posting content on social media and think twice does it have any value or not.

Endnotes

  1. Let’s have a quick back of the envelop calculation of how much time could be wasted by a person who watches say, four 45 minutes episodes a day, of a 5 season series that has 20 episodes a season, and he watches 20 such series in his life time.

Then,

Twasted = (4 hours a day x 45 minutes x 20 episodes x 5 seasons x 20 series) / 60 minutes / 24 hours = 250 days which is more than 2/3 of a year spent on watching!

This calculation is a conservative one and the waste could be a year or even more.

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