Less is Actually More: What is a Low-Information Diet, and Is it Right for You?
The end of 2017 rolled around, and I felt myself craving margin. Life was full–full of some really good things–but full nonetheless. As I sat down to do my PowerSheets Prep Work, I started to see a theme.
I had too much stuff.
I felt unsteady, wavering back and forth based on circumstances instead of truth.
I was no longer doing something I loved: reading.
My eyes were heavy.
The root of all those things? Information overload.
I had too much stuff because I was on every single shop mailing list. I felt unsteady because I spent too much time on Instagram, silently comparing myself during the scrolling. I was reading less because my free time was full of work and wedding planning and traveling. I was tired because I spent a lot of time staring at a screen–both for work, and after-hours while wedding planning.
It was a stark wake-up call. I immediately knew one of my PowerSheets goals needed to be “Phone Down, Eyes Up.” Short, simple, but packs a big punch (the best kinds of goals often do that!).
What is a Low-Information Diet?
A Low-Information Diet means you’re limiting the consumption of media in your life. Tim Ferris coined the term “Low-Information Diet” in his book The 4-Hour Work Week, where he talks about the importance of cultivating selective ignorance. “Selective” is an important word here! He doesn’t talk about complete ignorance in all things, but instead talks about the disservice consuming what doesn’t concern you does to yourself and those around you.
“Just as modern man consumes both too many calories and calories of no nutritional vale, information workers eat data both in excess and from the wrong sources.” -Tim Ferris
What’s going to matter to you when you’re 80?
What are the things you will look back on and want more of?
Not sure what those things are? That’s okay! PowerSheetscan help you uncover what matters most and make a plan to cultivate those things–the right things.
Those are the things you can start to cultivate now. Nothing says you have to wait until January 1st to start making changes. As cultivators, we’re big believers in little by little progress!
Trying to decide if embracing a Low-Information Diet is right for you? Here are my three checkpoints I’d encourage you to try:
Check the phone usage in your battery life. On my iPhone, I can go to my Settings > Battery and it will show me what apps have used the largest percentage of my battery life over the past 24 hours or 7 days. This is eye-opening!
Answer this question: What is the first thing you reach for when you wake up each morning? If it’s your cell phone to open your email, social media, or blog reader, your television remote, or a newspaper, it could be a sign it’s time to take a step back.
Download the Moment app.Moment automatically tracks how much you use your iPhone and iPad each day, and it allows you to set limits based on the information you see!
There’s no better time than the start of summer to kick a bad habit to the curb. This can be your summer to thrive! Fill those longer days with the things that fire you up. Make your own list of things to do instead of scrolling or watching television, and start checking those off one-by-one!