Have you ever imagined what a 3-minute scan on the internet can be like? It is like reading an article online when you happen to receive a message that links to a funny photo that you will eventually share with your social media. And now that you are on your wall, it makes it easy for you to watch some clips about stuff that catch your interest. Then you will turn to the search engine to find more information related to that particular thing you just watched. That is all you got to do to waste a couple of minutes of your time all day.
Brain Functionality In The Hands Of Information
If in case it is still not apparent for some reason, the internet is making people superficial thinkers. That is because the level of people’s curiosity tends to go high at a maximum rate. “Curiosity is something that can be nurtured and developed,” Todd Kashdan, PhD says. “We can also use curiosity to intentionally create wonder, intrigue and play out of almost any situation or interaction we encounter. It all starts with wanting to know more.”
It is like listing tons of what-ifs and trying to answer all of those, regardless of the possible consequences. Perhaps that is because of the pleasure people get by having to understand stuff that is interesting and unusual. The truth is, it is all about the dopamine level getting high. There is this satisfaction from the brain chemicals that reward people for seeking and finding out new information. It is not a bad thing, though. Getting distracted and eventually resolving that particular curiosity feels good because it helps individuals to stay alive.
However, the problem nowadays is too much information. There is too much access to things that make people accept some scenarios and stuff as usual things. There are violence and pornography, for instance. The internet creates all different variety of things that put pleasure to the brain, and that is why people love to use it so much. But that music, pictures, videos, and texts seem to do the opposite. That instead of merely trying to inform, it promotes people’s compulsive behavior. That is the reason why individuals continuously check their phones whenever they can. It becomes a habit and addiction to some extent. “Putting something on the Internet is no different than leaving it on a table at a coffee shop at the mall,” points out Stephen Behnke, JD, PhD. “Anyone can stop by and take a look.”
While a lot of people value the internet as the source of all the information, they forget to look at it from a different angle. Yes, it helps a lot when it comes to learning and discovering things. But its exact brain effects are nowhere near its purpose anymore. It is now a distraction and interruption that tends to be dangerous. According to David Greenfield PhD, MS “The Internet and the smartphone appear to hamper our ability to manage and balance time, energy, and attention. And they can be addictive.” The internet crowds out the more meditative and calmer mental state and changes it into something unfocused. In addition to the damage, the memory can get clogged up with so many things people can get in three minutes surfing the internet or scrolling on their social network. By that, it becomes less functional for the brain to store memory because it gets pretty much too much of everything.
Yes, the brain can potentially manage all the necessary information you put in there. However, in a couple of minutes, and there are too many to handle, expect it just to drop its ability.