The Digital Age in which we live offers us an unprecedented ability to micro-manage every aspect of our lives. Calendars on every electronic device, exercise tracking apps, project management software, cloud computing, social networking, even text messages and voicemails. We exist in a constant state of connectivity. For Creatives, and particularly for bookish, introverted Creatives (like me), this can be exhausting. And instead of being helpful or productive it can actually stifle our creativity by making us slaves to information. The mobility of today’s devices only serves to enable and feed that addiction. We are drowning in technology and the constant influx of information.
“What information consumes is rather obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients. Hence a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention.” –Herbert Simon
In, “Manage Your Day-to-Day” Jocelyn K. Glei, Editor-in-Chief of 99U, brings us essays, Q&As, and personal accounts on time management, choosing technology wisely, using social media mindfully, and creating time & clearing space for creative pursuits. She taps the wisdom and experience of such thought leaders as Gretchen Rubin, Tony Schwartz, Scott Belsky, Linda Stone and James Victore; among many others. The book is an easy read – 232 pages, and graphically rich, it is broken down into 5 Sections and an Afterword: “Building a Rock Solid Routine,” “Finding Focus in a Distracted World,” “Taming Your Tools,” “Sharpening Your Creative Mind,” and “Coda: A Call to Action.” Each Section concludes with bullet-pointed summaries called “Key Takeaways.”
The book is meant to be read, but it is also meant to be used. So use it. Read it all the way through at least once, making notes and flagging essays or sections you find particularly helpful. Then, refer back to your favorites for added inspiration or refreshers whenever you feel yourself losing focus or becoming overwhelmed. If you are a Creative struggling with time management, focus, goal achievement and/or technology overload, do yourself a favor. Take a few hours this weekend to unplug – completely unplug. No, really. I mean it. And read this book. You’ll be glad you did.