Reflection, contemplation and idleness in the age of distraction

19 October 2021
Posted in Ideas
19 October 2021 Editor-in-Chief

Everyone’s own imagination, creativity and next big idea depend on it. Plato wrote: What Plato writes is profound. Thinking is the core of our being. But today the world is hostile to serious thinking. In this age of information overload, depth of thought is less and less valued.

The most common barrier to deep thinking is distractions. And distractions simply crowd out our minds with inferior thoughts.

Modern life is over-stimulated, technology driven and information rich. Information – even useful information – can become a distraction if you don’t think about it, evaluate it or analyse it. Instead of taking time to think, our lives are full of shallow thinking habits and the most important activity is checking information, emails, and social media messages on the smartphone. Without a smartphone, people today are already limited in their ability to think because they no longer have access to Google.

Martin Heidegger spoke of how we humans are addicted to distraction; laziness also dominates thinking and information can also lead people into isolation.

The amount of valuable thought has a direct impact on the amount of valuable action people do for themselves and others. But the most effective, successful, and innovative people schedule time for deep thinking. Warren Buffett spent 80 per cent of his career thinking about what he could do to be successful.

The deeper the thoughts, the more rigorous is thinking, and the more the mind is exercised and challenged, the deeper can be understanding of problems and desires. Deep thoughts make action more meaningful, focused and valuable. In today’s ever-connected world, solitude has become a lost art. Solitude gives people time to think deeply.

You should think about using the many digital assistants to enter downtime, reflection time and idleness and be reminded to do them.

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