12 Rules for Navigating the Internet Intentionally - Deepstash

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Social media is a stream

Social media is a stream

The information never ends.

To use social media effectively, realise that you can never catch up with all of it. Instead, partake in the conversation, then leave.

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1.37K reads

Choose creation over consumption

The Internet can be a powerful tool for good or a terrible waste of time. The difference is if you are using it to create instead of consuming.

Watching endless videos on YouTube is consuming. Instead, write a blog, create a video, share your opinion of Facebook, or encourage a friend on Instagram.

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Realise that everybody is writing fiction about themselves

The Internet has become a platform for comparison. We can compare our homes' size, the model of our car, the vacations, even the food we eat.

When you see somebody living a picture-perfect life, remind yourself that nobody is living a perfect life. We use social media to show the story we want the world to see. Nobody is posting photos of themselves exhausted or bored on the couch, but everybody does it.

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Prefer substance over clickbait

Advertisers pay many websites based on how many page views they receive. The site owner's business plan is to get as many people clicking onto and within their website to earn more income. They don't care if they are providing value.

To use the Internet effectively, focus on websites and articles that offer genuine substance.

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Just because you can find the information online doesn't mean you should

A great aspect of the Internet is that you can find any information 24/7. That also makes it the most dangerous.

Just because you can know what your ex-girlfriend is up to these days, who starred in that movie, what the weather is like in Barcelona, doesn't mean you need it or should find it. It may be much better to be in the moment.

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Find voices you trust

It is remarkable that great minds produce fantastic content for free on the Internet.

Find the voices that you trust and enjoy. When you discover a content creator that is helpful to you and challenges you in positive ways, return to their work routinely.

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Don't be someone you're not

It is crucial to remain true to yourself and be the same person you're online and offline.

If you lie about yourself on social media, you lied about yourself. A lie online is still a lie. Don't be someone you're not.

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Information won't soothe your anxiety

Information is great and mostly positive, but it still has its limitations.

It can be helpful to research a possible disease you're waiting to hear back from your doctor. But knowing more may not make you feel better about it. It can make you feel worse.

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Don't argue politics with strangers

Talk with your friends, sure, but if you want to increase your enjoyment of the Internet and life in general, steer clear of debating politics with strangers.

It's far too easy to make negative assumptions about a stranger's character or motivation.

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Social media posts or news reports are not aimed at you

Even if you disagree with it, not every negative statement about your diet, industry, religion, lifestyle, or political party is a personal attack on you.

Generally, it is more productive to let it go and move on with your life.

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Don't believe everything

Websites can be faked; reviews can be faked; identities can be faked; news can be faked; photos can be faked; videos can be faked.

Sometimes it is faked for fun, and other times people have really bad motives. Don't believe everything on the Internet. Verify it.

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Know when to take a break

Take time away from the Internet and do more things that make you forget to check your phone.

Anne Lamott puts it this way, “Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.

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