When I first fully immersed myself in the online realm of social media, I was overwhelmed and excited with everything I took in. It was interesting to see the experiments companies were trying with online campaigns, and the new tools that were arising all the time. At some point fairly early on, I began to feel like the way I was thinking was changing, becoming more fragmented. At the time, I remember other people commenting about a similar effect. I felt like I was bouncing from topic to topic and nothing was really sticking.
As time passed, I began to settle into my social media groove. I found my pattern of when I would read some blog posts, when I would write some blog posts, when it was time to tweet, when and who I’d check in with on Facebook and LinkedIn… it was a comfortable phase. But it was just that, only a phase. Soon something else came along to excite me, fragment my attention and overwhelm my senses. And again, I came back to a new social media groove. Lately, I’ve felt myself entering that fragmentation period again. The times when my head is above the sand – that’s the short attention span – when I’m buried and focused, that’s when I find my groove.
Over the past year, I’ve noticing this pattern emerging in my behaviour several times. I’m beginning to think it’s how I’ve adapted to keep up with things online. You cannot possibly be excited, fragmented and overwhelmed all the time, but if you stick on the down low for too long you get left behind. Is this a new skill I’ve acquired? Will this make me a phenomenal multi-tasker? Will I lose my ability to focus on one thing for long periods of time? Or is that just something I will need to work harder at now to maintain some balance?
What about you? Have you been immersed enough to notice any changes in the way you think, in how you process information?