SOME THINGS ARE BETTER LEFT UNKNOWN, BUT IF YOU MUST DIG, THERE ARE RABBIT HOLES THAT AREN'T A TOTAL WASTE.
You’re working away at some project when suddenly, some obscure thought races across your mind. You want to know more, so you go to Google. An hour later, you’re reading about underwater drilling in the Pacific and you still have work to do. Internet rabbit holes are the pinnacle of distractions in the modern age. They can also be quite enjoyable. Humans are instinctually curious, and the world wide web is a deep wonderland. While we recommend learning something new every day, some topics you are better to avoid. That being said, if you’re going to be distracted while working, there are certain rabbit holes that can at least be beneficial.
While it is incredibly low hanging fruit, it needs to be mentioned; porn is one of the most addictive subjects that you can dive into on the internet. Not trying to shame anyone in anyway, we all engage in it, but watching enough fantasy-ridden perfect-body sex online can be detrimental to your mental health. A consistent flow of pornography can lead to unrealistic expectations about sex, and for men, can lead to erectile dysfunction. Plus, aside from all the different positions one can make love in, what are you really learning? We understand that the main reason for consuming pornography is to satisfy sexual urges. We get it. However, going down this rabbit hole in the middle of your workday will not put you in the mood to do more work. You’ll most likely be tired after the fact, and be less inclined to do any work at all. As a freelancer whose time is money, do yourself a favor and keep your X-rated viewing to after work hours. Preferably not for hours on end.
On the other hand, Americans are incredibly behind when it comes to sex education. It won’t be nearly as sexy, but falling down a rabbit hole about real life romance, relationships, and pleasure can be not only interesting, but rewarding.
This one is a bit tricky. It’s hard to scroll through any social media feed these days without seeing videos of dogs and kitties. It’s gotten to the point where even the animals themselves boast their own profiles. It’s cute and captivating, but you have work to do. We understand that we’re recommending against the science on the positive effects of watching animal videos, but these videos aren’t going anywhere. Getting distracted by them in the middle of the day is a great way to encourage more slacking off. If you have a pet, you’ll desire to get back to them, and if you don’t you’ll be thinking about what size Schnauzer you want. Either way, content like this encourages leisure and relaxing, not work-ethic. If anything, those videos should be an incentive for you to complete a hard-day’s work.
Now when was the last time you gave to a charity? This isn’t a judgement, we can’t all be Bill Gates, but it’s certainly a nice, and frankly important, thing to do. It can be tricky though to figure out what charities to give to. We only have a limited amount of money and we want to give it to a cause we really care about. Well there may be no more universally agreed upon cause than protecting our wildlife. Do some reading into charities making a different in our fight to save endangered species. Places like WWF are pretty popular, but check out a charity recommender to see which does the most good. You’ll probably learn some interesting facts about climate change and African mammals too; so slip down a rabbit hole and come out a Rhinoceros hole.
KEEPING UP WITH WHO?
Take a minute to think about your favorite celebrity. What do you like about them? What makes you want to be a voyeur into their life? If you’re able to tell us how many times Lindsay Lohan has been to rehab, you know where your rabbit hole problem is. It isn’t just you, we have a particular obsession with celebrity; with what they’re doing, who they’re dating, and any random facts that can give us insight into their stardom. Following the lives of the 1% can be fun, but like animals and porn, it can be grossly distracting from getting work done, and truly adds little value to your life.
You know what percentage of people are given far too little attention by us and the media? Our incredible scientists, doctors, engineers, diplomats, teachers, economists, and others who have dedicated their lives to valuable pursuits for the enrichment of us all. So next time you want to obsess over an individual try Mary Anning, a British woman and fossil expert who taught excavation to paleontologists when the field was still in its infancy. Try Bjarke Ingels a Danish architect whose work focuses on sustainability and recently designed the Two World Trade Center in New York. Plus. falling down a rabbit hole like that will give you an edge in your next bar trivia outing.
Rabbit holes are certainly a hell of a time, but unlike Alice’s travels, ours often lead to one big pointless distraction. Unfortunately, we’re never going to be able to completely stop going down rabbit holes, we’re only human after all. So when you do find yourself stumbling into one, try and avoid useless internet dribble. Instead, spend your time in wonderland learning about something genuinely wonderful.