Saturday, October 20th: Whoa … whoa … STOP! Today is INFORMATION OVERLOAD DAY. Computers were supposed to make our lives easier. And they have, in many ways. But in others … the information just keeps coming and coming, faster and faster.

Jonathan Spira, author of Overload! How Too Much Information is Hazardous to Your Organization started the celebration of this unique day. He urges people to send 10% fewer e-mail messages. He states that “the average knowledge worker receives 93 e-mail messages per day and many are unnecessary. If every knowledge worker in the U.S. were to send 10% fewer messages, the cost of Information Overload would be reduced by as much as $180 billion per year.” And that’s just at work. Then, we arrive home and have a deluge of emails to reckon with, not to mention checking our Facebook, Twitters, Linked In, Pinterest (and a slew of other social networking sites, not to mention the blogs we subscribe to) and soon the nights over and we haven’t accomplished a thing.

Some of the statistics posted on are:

  • A minimum of 28 billion hours is lost each year to Information Overload in the United States.
  • Reading and processing just 100 e-mail messages can occupy over half of a worker’s day.
  • It takes five minutes to get back on track after a 30 second interruption.
  • For every 100 people who are unnecessarily copied on an e-mail, eight hours are lost.
  • 58 percent of government workers spend half the workday filing, deleting, or sorting information, at an annual cost of almost $31 billion dollars.
  • 66 percent of knowledge workers feel they don’t have enough time to get all of their work done.
  • 94 percent of those surveyed have felt overwhelmed by information at some point to the point of incapacitation.

Keep in mind; those are statistics pertaining to work. What about the hours lost at home, hours spent trying to keep a handle on incoming information, in addition to the time we spend looking up facts and details that we really want to know! What can you do today to keep the information overload at bay? What can we do to take back control of our lives and our families? (A little ironic since I’m posting this ‘information’ via Facebook and a blog don’t you think?)

November 2020

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