Are our brains being hacked?
I ask that because I noticed one day I was working extremely focused. The whole day. My working hours were highly productive. I was in a state of flow. It felt good. And that meant I didn't check social media. I checked my personal e-mail only 3 times the whole day. It was one of my most productive days in months!
And when I got home in the evening I sat down to read a book. And I just couldn't focus! I couldn't get past the first sentence. My mind was searching for something. CRAVING for something. And 15 minutes later of reading the same sentence over and over I realized I wanted to check news. Updates. New information!
It seemed like my brain needed stimulation before doing focussed work again. Does that mean I got addicted to the dopamine release related to the social media usage? I got my mobile phone and looked at the shiny screen... ...I opened Twitter, but there nothing much there anymore. ...2 minutes later I checked my 2 e-mails accounts. Nothing of importance. ...5 minutes later I checked Whatsapp and Telegram. Read all the messages. Nothing major to reply. ...10 minutes later I opened the Discord app. Read all the messages of the groups I currently participate on. Didn't need to reply anything. Done.
And then I was good to get back to my book.
There is one good thing happening here: none of the apps that I looked into had an endless timeline. Twitter could potentially have the never ending scrolling feed but I only follow 9 accounts there, so nothing much to see. And so I spent 17 minutes checking my “feeds”, which is not much considering that in the past I used to be sucked into the Facebook feed for hours.
I think I'm making progress...
But I still think my brain is not the same. Why did I had this urge to check any of those apps? I felt like a lab rat pulling the lever to get some food.
Weird... I wonder if I will ever get rid of this brain hack.