Miguel Panao | Professor and Author

Finding ways to improve scientific writing and academic productivity.

Who controls your digital life… you?

The pace of technological innovation is fast. Technology has literally changed our habits, thoughts and lifestyles. In the last decades, we assisted the rise of social media, and again, with a profound impact in our lives. A digital life emerged. However, have you ever looked at people in the subway or airport lounge?

Digital life: self or ego?

Everyone has their gaze fixed on the small screen. Doing something useful? Some probably are, but most dedicate minutes if not hours of their lives to social media and watching videos. People are becoming fast-pace consumers of information. When this information is relevant, like news or a post that makes you think, you may experience a transformation and that is good. But most of the time I see people consuming irrelevancy, burping through a few likes as a sign of satisfaction for the candies they eat.

 

Examine your digital life

Something is off. If you feel you don’t have enough time, think about your digital life. If you left social media for one day, would anyone notice? What about 2 days or even a week? Quitting social media must be a conscious decision, but managing your digital is mandatory whether you like it or not.

As argued by Simon Sinek in his insightful analysis on the Millennials – which I believe to be for everyone – social media is an open bar of dopamine to make us feel good and numb. We won’t survive the thrilling challenges of life if we’re numb. We need to be always in alert. That’s how we evolved. That’s what keeps us evolving.

 

A suggestion

I love technology and it allows us to amplify our skills, but we have to manage it before it (someone?) manages us instead. A first step could be simple and practical.

Don’t use social media for one full day per week. And dedicate your time to actual face-to-face experiences instead of digital ones.


Question: have you tried? How was the experience?

About Miguel Panao

I am a Professor at the University of Coimbra in Mechanical Engineering. I am also author of books in the fields of environmental ethics and Science and Religion. From the several research projects, this site is personal and dedicated to the search for the best approaches, tools, techniques to improve scientific productivity.

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