Our generation is very lucky compared to our previous because of one innovation – Internet.
Our previous generation, even when they gave money they were not able to find the right information whereas we can find anything, anywhere in the world with the help of a mouse click.
Internet has changed the way how knowledge is consumed. Any individual can become an autodidact of his/ her subject of interest. We can learn new languages with various YouTube tutorials. We can clarify any doubts and receive answers immediately in Quora. We can learn 2000 years of history within 20 minutes in Wikipedia. Information has become free and more importantly easy to acquire.
This opening of knowledge boundaries has also created one problem – Problem of Plenty.
We are exposed to a lot of information which may is not needed for us necessarily.
Whenever we sit in front of internet to search something, we always end up reading/ watching something which catches our eye. This happens and it is very common.
How to optimize our browsing session? Here I am sharing my few ideas which helped me to stay focused on my requirements.
1. Sticky Notes
Always start with a sticky note. Windows 7 Premium comes with a sticky note within it. But there are also many free sticky note softwares which you can use.
Write down what are the things you want to do in the browsing session in points. Once you finish it use Ctrl+Shift+T to make a strike upon it. This will help you stay focused on your browsing objectives.
2. Install Adblocker
The most annoying thing of browsing are advertisements. But nowadays, advertisements have gone from mass advertising to customized. i.e. they make you see ads based on your recent browsing history.
This makes the ads even more relevant and the users are lured to go into the advertiser’s website which is a distraction during browsing.
3. YouTube Theatre Mode
YouTube is one of the richest sources of information in internet. With so many tutorials and demo sessions, the students can make the most of it. However, when the screen is in normal mode, the users can also see a list of related videos on their right.
If the user knows exactly the video link then he/she can put on theatre mode to avoid seeing the videos on the right side.
4. Use Apps and Extensions
As mentioned in Apartment therapy website, you can use the following technologies:
" Try SelfControl if you use a Mac, Leechblock if you're looking for a Firefox extension, or StayFocused if you use Chrome."
I have not used the Self Control and Leechblock but Stayfocusd is really helpful. It’s a google chrome extension and you can use it if you always spend more time in a website than you want especially while reading news.
There are also many other apps, extensions helping users to increase browsing productivity. So, before you sit in front of laptop next time ask yourself these 2 questions:
- What information do I need?
- How long should I spend?
Putting these two criteria upfront brings clarity and it gives focus. Next time, you don't need to wake up with your laptop lying beneath your bed.