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Reduce That Overloaded Feeling

Stefano Berrios, a student in Jon Pfeiffer’s Spring 2017 Media Law class at Pepperdine University, wrote the following essay in response to the prompt: With a flood of information constantly bombarding us, what tools or tricks do you use to manage the information?

As a millennial, I have grown up in an age where any of my questions can most likely be answered by entering it into Google Search. When information is so easily accessed from various sources of media, information overload will certainly be prevalent. Not only is searching for what we want easy, we also have televisions, social media, and various other media that push information onto us whether we want it or not. So what can one do to filter out the important from the unimportant or the useful from the useless?

The first and easiest way to help prevent information overload may seem overly simple and obvious, but essentially just know what you like and what you do not like. Having a strong sense of your preferences lays a solid foundation for filtering out all of the ‘noise’ that we do not want to see or hear. For example, on social media one can like and follow things that interest them or conversely they can block anything they do not want to see. Filtering of the mind is also important. Focusing on what is important is difficult, considering that I have heard that the average human attention span has reduced lower than the attention span of a goldfish. Over time though, it is certainly possible to get better and better to focus on what is significant and ignore everything else.

Another tactic used by people which I have heard can be very helpful and refreshing is getting rid of social media entirely. Social media is the source of many things that are not very positive such as the proliferation of fake news, toxicity and hate, and people just being disingenuous. I have seen shirts that say something along the lines of “I hope your life is as good as your Facebook profile makes it seem”. This is due to the fact that most people only post about positive things in their lives, leading many people to feel like they are the only people with problems in their lives. Social media can certainly lead to depression as well as information overload with things that are useless. Because of this, taking a break from it or getting rid of it can be very helpful to many people. I feel like most people get most of their information from social media so getting rid of that would take out so much of their daily intake. I did take a break from Facebook once which actually proved to be a nice experience. I recommend trying it at least once.

My last tip would be to just have a conversation with someone. When someone gets bombarded every day with ridiculous amounts of information, it all gets stuck in their head. Go out with a friend and unload some of that baggage. Putting thoughts into words will help sort all of the information out and reduce that ‘overloaded’ feeling.

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Stefano is a senior at Pepperdine University majoring in Integrated Marketing and Communications.

Jon Pfeiffer is an experienced entertainment and copyright trial attorney practicing in Santa Monica. Jon is also an adjunct professor at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California where he teaches Media Law. COM 570 covers First Amendment issues as well as copyright, defamation and privacy.   

  • Pepperdine Student Comments
  • Mar 29, 2017

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