Imagine walking into a restaurant and seeing the biggest buffet ever. There are tables and tables of food, as far as you can see. And they are covered with everything imaginable - from American BBQ to Indian curries, from fresh and healthy to sinfully decadent, and everything in between. You see so many of your favourite dishes and many others that are unfamiliar but tempting all the same. And best of all, it’s all-you-can-eat! Now what do you do?
Most people would dive right in, start with a little of this and a little of that until their plate is practically overflowing. Then they would go back for more, plate after plate, because it tastes so good and there are so many options, until they leave having overeaten and feeling disgusting. What starts out as an enjoyable experience could easily turn into a gastronomic nightmare.
I liken this experience to the Internet. Instead of food, it offers an unlimited amount of information on an all-you-can-eat basis. It’s up to us to determine what our limits are and too often we can’t control ourselves. We go online for one thing, see something else that looks interesting, follow endless links and completely lose track of time. While this doesn’t leave us feeling disgusting like overeating does, it definitely can have a negative impact on our relationships, productivity, sleep, and general emotional wellbeing.
Now admittedly, I’m not a big fan of buffets. I find the volume of food overwhelming so I prefer to order off a menu but sometimes they are unavoidable. So, over the years, I have developed a few strategies to help me cope with the vastness they offer and walk away feel satisfied, instead of sick to my stomach. I think these strategies could also be helpful in reducing our Internet consumption, so we spend less time online.
I hope these strategies help you both online and on the less frequent occasions when you happen to find yourself facing a buffet. Bon appétit!
I have a curious mind and many interests. I like to spend time musing about things and this is where some of my musings end up. I would love to hear from you if you have a thought or question you'd like to add. Conversation is always appreciated.