Maintaining Focus Despite Digital Distractions

In this final chapter of the book Digital Minimalism, Cal Newport offers tips on how to keep digital distractions at bay even after your digital declutter.

Delete Social Media from your Phone

Most people now have their phones with them at all times. You may even be reading this on your phone, else it is likely very near by. Social Media companies know this, so they pour all the most powerful, attention-stealing resources into the mobile versions of their apps.

If you delete the app and browse on the mobile site you even get notifications telling you there is a better experience on the app version, the app allows them more control over your experience and data. Once you’re in their world, they have control, that’s the real reason they care so much about you using the app.

If instead, you dedicate a specific time to use social media, like an old fashioned TV show (before we could pause, record or stream on demand) you can limit the effects that social media has on you. To do this you must delete the app, log out of the app on your browser and change the password to something bothersome to type in and remember, then hide the password somewhere inconvenient and only use the desktop version at the selected time.

This works on 3 levels:

Friction

It adds friction to the process. Having to log into a specific computer, type in an annoying password, finding where the password is written, all adds up to extra effort. This extra effort can overcome the quick urge to check your Facebook. Having overcome the initial urge, you can more easily do something else, breaking the habit.

Scheduled Use

Having a specific time when you tune in, trains your brain to associate that time with using social media and to avoid it the rest of the time, eventually, it stops being an option. You know you don’t check your social media now, because it’s not the scheduled time, so the urge goes away.

Fewer Forces to Resist

The version on your desktop browser has slightly fewer attention manipulating features making it easier to log out at quitting time.

Make Your Devices Single Purpose When You Need to Focus

If you use an app like Freedom, you can block certain apps at specific times, like when you need to focus at work. Having the apps blocked for you, removes the need for your willpower. Eventually, you will build focused habits and not need the app.

If you really can’t trust yourself consider giving the password to unlock the app to a trusted partner.

Use Social Media Like a Professional

You may not want to quit Facebook entirely if there is a particular group that has updates you really care about. Maybe your problem is the distracting newsfeed.

Instead you can log in at a specific time as above and only use it to check on the groups you care about, so you don’t lose total connection to the group, but you also don’t get sucked in wasting time on the other crap. You can even get a newsfeed removing extension on Chrome.

This will allow you to use social media on your terms, so you still get the high-value parts and can ignore distractions.

Embrace Slow Media

Avoid “breaking news” on sites like Twitter where you get trickles of information from unreliable news sources, drowning in misinformation and memes. Getting strangers’ hot takes on issues doesn’t inform you, their opinions aren’t held to any standards.

Instead subscribe to publications or authors whose work you respect and trust, like a favoured publication or blogger. They will likely have thought the news through and journalists from good publications care about getting the truth.

Dumb Down Your Smartphone

You could replace your smartphone with a flip phone or call forward to a flip phone for periods where you need no distractions, but still need calls. This is a tad extreme and I haven’t tried it. I also do get distracted by my phone, so maybe I’m missing out.

To find out more buy the book or see my other summaries.

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Choosing Real Hobbies Over Digital Distractions

Look how fucking zen this guy looks, that could be you
Photo by Avi Richards on Unsplash

Digital Minimalism encourages you to cut back on low-quality, digital distractions and spend more time doing high-quality analogue things. Once you have succeeded in reducing digital distractions, you will have a lot more spare time. Without a better way to spend your time, you can easily slip back into old habits.

There is a better way.

You start a new hobby or rediscover and old one. The effort of doing more may make you groan. After a hard day’s work it’s tempting to zone out and scroll through your newsfeed or binge-watch the latest Netflix show. You will feel more energised and getting a greater sense of satisfaction from doing something difficult and/or creative. The initial hump of effort is worth the positives.

Why to Choose Hobbies

Change is difficult. Cal Newport’s Digital Minimalism has advice is advice on how to survive this new change and I, your humble blogger, have summarised it for you:

1) Choose To Do Hard Things, Rather Than Passive Things

It is much more effort to read a book than to watch TV. Humans have evolved to listen to voices and watch people, so we find those easy. Learning to read requires stealing resources from your brain that used to do other things like pattern recognition of symbols, processing the meaning of words, phrases and grammar and so on.

Effort is rewarding.

A day of binge-watching can leave you feeling like you wasted your day, even if you liked the show. Part of you feels guilty for wasting your time. There’s an emptiness afterwards. Reading a book feels good though. You can look at the pages you read and feel a sense of accomplishment. Your brain is fatigued by the mental effort of having read something, but it is a pleasing kind of tiredness, like you earned it.

The effort felt good.

2) Creation > Consumption

Make Something

Building something with your own hands is satisfying. It gives you a sense of achievement to look at something you built and know you built it. It might not even be that good, but you did it. It’s even the secret to IKEA’s success, most people’s favourite piece of furniture is often something they struggled to build from IKEA, rather than the most expensive item.

Making can be any creative hobby. You could do woodworking, knitting, writing essays, drawing etc.

The key to enjoying the hobby, rather than getting frustrated and giving up, is to focus on the process. Focused creating is meditative, you are only aware of what you’re doing, your other worries don’t cloud your mind for a while.

Don’t think about how good the end result will be. Putting too much pressure on yourself to be good can kill the fun for you. So consider not sharing the results online. You want to do something for yourself.

If later, you get good at the thing, and feel proud and want to share it, then go ahead. Just do it for you at first, not for adoration or Likes.

Fix Stuff

Next time you find damage in your house that you would usually call someone to fix. See if you can do it yourself. There are plenty of ways to learn how to do anything online, just try to avoid getting stuck in YouTube rabbit holes. You want to fix a loose hinge not find out if there are real mermaids.

Once you can fix things, you will get a feeling of confidence that comes from having a skill. You don’t feel so panicked when something goes wrong in your house or you tear your favourite shirt, because you’ve fixed something before and you can do it again. You feel more capable and ready to take on the challenge. You might even save money by not needing to call contractors for each little thing.

3) Get Real

Making Something Real

Coding or doing digital art, whilst creative, don’t give you something you can pick up and touch. There’s something more satisfying about tangible creations, than something you an only see on a screen. Maybe it’s why people still buy real books and vinyl records, even though their digital counterparts are so much more convenient.

An added issue is digital creations can be closer to the distractions you were previously trying to avoid. You are just an open tab away from a YouTube rabbit hole.

Doing Something Real

Playing a sport or getting exercise is good for your physical and mental health, we all know this. A lot of the time it seems like a bother, but being fit and healthy feels good in ways you don’t expect. You have more energy and confidence in your body. You don’t need to become an Olympian, you just need to be moving a bit each day.

Social media won’t give you the same good feelings from socialising, you will have much better experiences in person, which is difficult right now, but outside sports are still allowed.

Getting physically exhausted by doing exercise will feel better as well. It’s not that you will be too tired to do anything else in work or life, but instead you will feel more energised day-to-day than when you just scroll all day. You will feel more tired at night, but it’s a good tired, like you’re ready for bed and to recharge, not tired like you can’t get through another minute of life right now.

How To Choose Hobbies

Now that you’re convinced of the wonders of high-quality leisure time, you may be wondering how to put this advice into action, the following tips should be a good starting point

Make or Fix Something Every Week

Think of something creative you used to do when you were younger but no longer do. Do that. If there was nothing you did when you were younger, think about something you always told yourself you wanted to do but never have done.

If you need materials you don’t have, get the cheapest stuff you can find. You don’t need the pencils Da Vinci used to draw or Hendrix’s guitar. Go cheap and simple, if you over-complicate things at the beginning you will stop yourself before you even start.

If your hobby requires you to setup and put things away, try to make this process as automatic as possible. The more friction there is in your hobbies, the more likely you will put it off.

Look around your house, something is probably not in the best shape. Stick to something safe, don’t go changing wires if you don’t know how. A wonky chair could be a good start or a loose tile. You’re not looking to be a master builder, just to fix something that bothers you.

Make Time For Your New Hobby

Don’t rely on inspiration. You might never do anything.

Set yourself a schedule for when you can do your new hobby and stick to it. You don’t have to plan to the minute, just find an hour a week when you expect to have some free time and stick that in the diary. Then show up and do it.

You will meet some internal resistance at first, but fight through it. It can take a few weeks for a a habit to form, then you won’t have to keep scheduling time, because you will automatically do so. If the habit slips due to a change in schedule, then rinse and repeat.

Join Something

Joining a class or team sport, usually means there will be a schedule, you are obligated to go at certain times. This helps you maintain a routine which makes hobbies easier to stick with, rather than having to set your own schedule or doing it when the mood strikes you.

Doing things with other people is also enjoyable because humans are sociable creatures by nature. If it’s a hobby you would like to do but know you are unreliable at, having a group who relies on you could keep you accountable, so you actually follow through. You can’t quit running half way through a group run, because you would let your team down, or you can’t avoid finishing the book because it will ruin book club. The social pressure can keep you in check.

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Conversation Beats Connection

Photo by GESPHOTOSS on Unsplash

Conversation Gives You Lots of Information, Connection Gives Little

Conversation is speaking to someone on the phone, on video or in person. It’s high-bandwidth, lots of information is conveyed to the other person, not just text. It’s all your gestures, expressions, tones, and rhythms.

Connection is Liking, Reacting, Commenting, Sharing, Texting and any other low-bandwidth media, where you don’t give much information in your actions.

If I just Liked what you said, you couldn’t glean much from that. There’s so little information in a Like. What did that Like even mean? There’s no nuance. Social Media gives the illusion of sharing your life with your friends and family or even strangers, but a Like is never going to be as meaningful as a deep conversation. Your mum will be much happier getting phone call on Mother’s day than a tribute Facebook post. Cardi B will never remember that Like you gave her latest post.

Talking is in the moment. You can see how your words affect the other person and adjust your speech accordingly or keep going because you’re getting the effect you want. There’s an immediate action-feedback loop. You tell a joke they laugh, you tell another joke, they laugh more, then another, they don’t laugh, you stop.

Coversation Expands, Connection Stops Immediately

Conversations are more serendipitous. You can jump suddenly to a completely different topic because something the other person said reminded you of something totally different, so a conversation about the weather leads to the systemic issues in our government and a million things in between.

Likes can’t create mental leaps, they don’t have enough meaning. They’re meaningless. Next time you have a conversation try to trace the last topic back to the first one. There may be 40 different jumps. I don’t think that will be the case with the last Like you gave.

Conversations Share More

If I have a hard day I want someone to listen to me and soothe me with comforting words or a hug. I don’t want 50 likes on my latest tweet. When something good happens to me, I want to jump and and down with with my friends, I don’t want Shares of a self-congratulatory post.

Loneliness triggers the same systems in your body as physical pain. It hurts. I’m sure if you think back to lockdown, you know what I mean. Likes and Shares don’t relieve loneliness. Only real conversation and touch can do that.

How To Have Conversations Over Connections

Phone-Call Office Hours

You’re busy. Your Mum’s busy. Your friends are busy. Time is scarce, therefore it’s the most valuable thing you can offer someone. You can make more money, you can’t unspend time.

Set a time when you are always free to a select group and stick to it. Make sure those select few know this time and know you mean it, they will feel appreciated and valued.

These are your “phone-call office hours”. The concept is taken from university lecturer office hours. Lecturers have schedules and research to do. They don’t want to see students all day everyday, but they do want to help their students when they have time. The solution is a fixed time every week where they welcome interruption and will help you learn. Instead you are ready to chat to anyone who might call.

A specific time works better than saying “call me anytime” because everyone knows you don’t mean any time. They may miss a few calls and get disheartened, or never call to begin with in case they bother you. This is a gradual process, but it’s how you end up thinking “Oh, I really should call Kate” 6 months after losing touch.

If you stick to times you are genuinely free, and keep telling people that time, your loved ones will realise you are reliable and call in these times more.

Reply to Texts in Blocks

If you’ve been replying to texts here and there all day, you might feel like you’ve been connected to your friends. But when you look back in a month, you will realise that connection isn’t as good as conversation. You may have never had a more meaningful connection than asking how their day was.

You can set your phone to Do Not Disturb and this will stop your phone buzzing for every text, breaking your concentration. You can also configure these settings to just let phone calls through or specific contacts, in case you still want to receive updates from people who need to get through at any time of the day.

Then once a day or as often as you like, you can check your texts and fire off all the replies in one go. This will help you feel like you’re not just answering texts all day in a constant haze of low-grade connection and then make time for real conversation.

Don’t “Like” or “Comment”

If your friend is important to you, call them or arrange to meet in person. If they’re not important to you, then drop them. You will get more meaning out of a few great friends than millions of followers.

Find out more here or read the book.

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Why Time Alone is Good for the Soul

Photo by Andrew Teoh on Unsplash

Constant connection to the internet is not good for your mental health. Phones need to recharge and so do our brains. The solution? Solitude.

What Solitude is

Solitude is a part of your day where you are free from anyone else’s thoughts. This means :

  • No Reading
  • No Talking in person or on the phone
  • No Screens (phones, TV, computers, tablets etc)
  • No Music
  • No Podcasts
  • No Radio

What Solitude Is Not

Solitude Does Not Need to be Drastic

Solitude does not mean cutting yourself off from reality, you could find solitude in a coffee shop, in your home, on a walk or on public transport.

Solitude Does Not Need to be Permanent

The idea is not to become a hermit and never speak to anyone ever again. You don’t need that much solitude, humans are social animals after all. It’s about getting some space to reflect on your life and emotions. Connection is not the enemy, 100% connection is.

The Benefits of Solitude

Now you know what solitude is and what it isn’t. But why should you care? There are many benefits to getting some solitude:

Be More Creative

Creative ideas come when we have time to think and let our minds wander. Ever notice how you seem to have your best ideas after the problem like in the shower or driving home? This is because time alone allows your mind to wander and make connections that have been brewing in your subconscious without you realising. If you had been distracting yourself with an audiobook, you would be too focused on the story to have your own thoughts flow.

Get to Know Yourself

Time alone can give you time to think about stuff. If you are really busy at work, then you come home, watch some TV, cook some dinner, scroll through Twitter, go to bed and rinse and repeat, you can go weeks on autopilot.

Taking time to think about your day, your dreams, your hopes, your fears, can help you understand what you want out of life.

It’s tempting to get out of your head when you’re stressed. The numbing distraction of a scroll through the newsfeed can stop you thinking about what’s bothering you. This doesn’t solve the problem. You will still have those feelings in the back of your mind. Dealing with them is the only way to grow.

Have Better Relationships

If you don’t have constant distractions, you can focus on what matters. You can listen to your partner or friend better when they need a sympathetic ear, you can be present rather than half-talking-half-scrolling but being a whole crappy conversationalist.

Switch Off

Before we had mini computers in our pockets interruptions weren’t that frequent, so we had plenty of time alone with our thoughts on walks to work, drives to the shops, queues to get coffee and so on. Yes Walkmans existed and such, but the constant presence of texts, music, notifications, pings, buzzes, bleeps and bloops is something that came in with the Smart phone.

Nowadays you have to make a conscious effort to get away from some form of communication or technology. The constant connectivity means your brain is always on. Your brain craves the rest it gets when it is not under constant stimulation.

Concentrate Harder and Longer

The quick glances we give our phones seem innocent enough, but you can take 20 minutes to regain your full concentration. That’s 20 minutes to get back on track with the hard problem you were trying to solve at work.

Check how many quick glances you give your phone next time you are at work or with a friend and make a quick tally. At the end of the day multiply the number by 20 and see how many minutes of lost concentration you had just to see if someone had a new photo uploaded in the last 5 minutes. You’ll realise how much of your own time you are stealing.

Improve Your Mental Health

Gen Z, the kids who grew up with fast internet and mobile tech, have the highest rates of anxiety and depression of any previous generation, this is true even when you account for the decreased mental health stigma meaning more people are willing to get diagnosed.

Experts say that the constant connectivity and ability to always be distracted means they have no mental downtime and have not learnt how to regulate their emotions, because anytime they get riled up, they can browse some dank memes and forget about it.

Now everyone with a smart phone has this problem.

How to Get some Juicy Solitude

You’re now fully convinced that solitude is a good thing, but don’t know how to get some. Luckily there are some tips:

Leave Your Phone Out of Reach

Leaving your phone in a separate room from the one you are in can be enough separation to cut the habit of a quick check or a 30 minute browse. Stopping yourself at the moment you feel the urge to do a habit, the cue, is the easiest time to break that habit. It requires much less willpower to just not walk over to your phone, than to drag yourself away mid-scroll.

If you’re chatting to a friend and you go to check your phone, then realise it’s not in your pocket, it’s all the way upstairs, you decide it’s not worth checking, you carry on chatting to your friend, the conversation is more meaningful because you’re engaged and you feel a little closer to Mark. Great result.

If you are worried you may miss an emergency, feel free to keep the phone in the same room but just out of sight, so you can hear it ring, maybe turn off social media notifications, so that not every buzz captures your attention.

Take Long Walks

Walks have helped great minds think for thousands of years. They clear your head and even get the brain more active than when you’re just sitting. The key is to leave all devices at home or to just not use them. Try leaving them in your pocket or your bag.

Scenic walks work best, nature has a wonderful calming effect on the human mind, if you’re stuck in a city like me, consider a park, it doesn’t have to be the Amazon to be nature.

Bring a pen and pad so you can write down the ideas you have. No point thinking up a solution then forgetting it. If you write the notes on your phone you may get distracted by some notification or give in to the urge to listen to something, ruining the effect.

Write To Solve Problems

Writing is thinking. So if you take the time to write down ideas, you can really crystallise those ideas and think more clearly than you can using just your mind.

You can write on anything a scrap of paper is fine, the act of the writing matters here more than keeping the notes for later. If you do want to read it later that’s fine too.

You could summarise your best ideas succinctly in a separate notebook, so anytime you need a good idea to solve a problem or write about, you just flip through your idea notebook and have a load of ideas ready to read.

Write To Clear Your Head

If you just need to get the thoughts out of your head, I find getting them on paper to be best. Once you have written down your worries, they leave your head. This is especially helpful if you’re prone to thoughts racing through your head late at night, stopping you sleep.

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Find out more

Stop Scrolling, Start Living

Photo by Malcolm Lightbody on Unsplash

Scrolling down an infinite page of updates passes time but it feels shit. You kill time rather than enjoying your time. This deflates you.

Doing something that takes effort feels better.

It’s easy to just scroll Facebook or Twitter for a bit, but it doesn’t feel good. Despite this, you can end up wasting hours a day doing it.

Big Tech companies spend millions of dollars researching how to make their apps as addictive as possible. Something you barely think about has been fine-tuned to be as manipulative as possible, that’s not a fair fight.

Take Facebook for example, it’s free, yet they make billions of dollars every year. They do this through advertising. Advertisers pay for you to look at their stuff and buy it. To Facebook, more time looking at the screen equals more money. If they can stop you ever looking away from their screens, they make more money. So their goals of making money, don’t align with your goal catching up with friends.

They don’t care if you enjoy the app, they care that you look at it.

Willpower alone will fail. Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport has the tools you need.

The 30 Day Digital Declutter

  1. Take a 30 day break from the optional technologies in your life (social media, streaming, gaming etc)
  2. Explore and rediscover activities and behaviours you find satisfying and meaningful (reading, sports, travel)
  3. After the break, reintroduce tech you find valuable and meaningful, slowly.

1. What’s Your Optional Technology

To have a successful declutter, you need a plan. Having a plan will give you a written record to refer to, when things get tough.

Critical Vs Convenient

Write out a list of the technologies you use, defining them as “convenient” or “critical”.

Convenient technology you use to entertain yourself, or for fun and nothing more.

Critical technology includes apps you actually need to live. This could be maps to get around or emails to answer clients.

Exceptions to the Rule

Some convenient tech could be used in specific situations only. You don’t want to be with a group of friends and have to leave the room, because they put a movie on. Socialising could be an exception to a “no Netflix” rule.

Total Bans

Decide which technologies need a total ban. This can and should (in my opinion) include Facebook, Instagram and any other social media that harvests your personal data for profit.

Note: I am on Twitter, more on that later.

Remind Yourself Daily

Write down your rules on a small note and put the note somewhere you will see it everyday. This helpful reminder, could prevent you giving in when the declutter gets tough.

2. The 30-Day Break

The time has come. This is the difficult part, but the most rewarding as well.

30 days, isn’t a hard rule, but 1 month is a clear time and long enough to create a new routine.

Every Journey Starts with a Single Step

The first few weeks are the most difficult, this is when your natural rhythms will urge you to reach for your phone when you’re in a queue or put on Netflix when you have an hour to kill. After these first few weeks, it gets easier and eventually the urges die off.

Rediscover and Explore

The easiest way to fall back into the habit of mindless scrolling and watching is to have nothing to do instead. The beauty of Cal’s ideas, are that you aren’t expected to just power through the process. Instead, you replace the old unsatisfying activities with new, fulfilling ones.

Now is the time to try hobbies you used to enjoy, dust off the that bike and go for a ride, try another model kit you built as a kid or draw something just for fun.

It is also a time to explore new hobbies. You may not know what you would rather do than mindless binge-watches of Netflix shows. Try something new and see if you like it. The key is to look for activities that actively engage you.

Effort is rewarding.

Scrolling and binge-watching are easy, but that’s why they’re so unsatisfying. To actually build something, achieve something or get somewhere, takes more effort and that’s why it feels so much better. You’re going from passively to floating through life, to living life the way you want to.

3. Reintroduce Technology

30 days have passed. You no longer feel the urge to scroll through Instagram, like photos, or catch up on the latest memes.

Now you choose what tech gets to come back, based on if :

  • It serves a deep value, not just some value.
  • It is the best way to serve that value.
  • You can decide how and when to use it.

Deep Value vs Some Value

You decide what matters to you. A deep value, could be YouTube, because you use it to learn new skills. Maybe the YouTube rabbit-holes were your issue, so you could get a plug-in that turns off the recommendation algorithm. Then use YouTube by searching for the lesson you want and leaving. No Browsing. You get the value you want and leave before you get sucked in.

Is the Technology the Best Tool for the Job?

If your goal is to keep in touch with your friends, maybe liking the occasional photo isn’t the best way. You build a much deeper connection by calling someone or having a video call or if you’re able, meeting in person. You will have a much more satisfying experience than just scrolling past their latest pics.

Have Rules for How and When to Use the Tech

You may come back from your 30 day break and realise you did actually get something from the information you get on Twitter. You may follow thought-leaders who post interesting content but don’t have a newsletter.

One way round this is to have a set time to go on Twitter, then you don’t go on anymore than that set time.

Adding friction to the processes can help too. Such as a rule to only use your PC for Twitter. The app is the most addictive version, because Big Tech know people always have their phones on them, so they pour the most additive functions into the app version. The added friction of having to turn on your computer just to go on Twitter may be enough to stop the addictive cue and you can go and do something better. This is strengthened if you log out of Twitter on your browser and delete the app on your phone.

30 days to reset your digital habits.

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Digital Minimalism: An Introduction

Technology isn’t bad, letting it rule our lives is.

Digital minimalism is about using our devices less, so we can live better, more intentional lives. If you’re anything like me, time spent on social media mainly consists of scrolling, liking and sharing. This is distracting and occasionally amusing, but it lacks something. You can feel worse than before you started browsing. How many of your favourite memories have you swiping on a screen?

Digital Minimalism isn’t anti technology, tin hat wearing madness. It’s finding ways to have technology serve you. Digital Minimalism gives you the tools to fight back against the digital Goliaths who make money off your attention, so you can focus on meaningful and satisfying activities instead. Ever heard someone complain they were too satisfied? Me neither, so maybe it’s worth a try.

Why Digital Minimalism?

Minimalism is about getting rid of clutter. You live a simpler, better life.

Minimalism is about optimisation. You make big, effective changes and forget about the small details.

Minimalism is about living your life you choose, not just letting life happen to you.

Apply all that to your devices and you get Digital Minimalism.

What is Digital Minimalism?

The Digital Declutter

You intentionally remove all the virtual messiness from your life for 30 days. That’s a long time. 30 days of no scrolling, no liking and no commenting (online, you can comment in person if you wish). Then you slowly reintroduce technology back to your life.

Once 30 days have passed, you leave your interrogate your digital habits that took so much of your time and decide which ones improve your life. You get rid of the rest.

For me that was Facebook, Instagram and Reddit. Somehow Twitter and Imgur have survived, no one’s perfect.

Optimisation

You’ve decided which apps get to stay and which ones to throw out. Now you must figure out how these apps, websites and widgets will serve you best.

How can you get the most value for the smallest amount of effort? You find the smallest changes that will have the biggest impact on your life.

Once you’ve made the big changes, stop optimising. You will just waste more and more time getting smaller and smaller results, this is the law of diminishing returns.

Satisfaction

Your spare time should always be yours.

The Digital Declutter may result in you having much more spare time than you used to have. To make sure you don’t slip back into old habits and to reap the biggest rewards, you replace that time with high-value activities. These look different for everyone, yours could be football or playing guitar, mine tend me to reading and learning something I’m curious about.

Apps are convenient, but self-direction feels better.

Learn more here:

https://www.hive.co.uk/Product/Cal-Newport/Digital-Minimalism–Choosing-a-Focused-Life-in-a-Noisy-World/24893628

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