The Law of Digital Distraction — How to really live your best life

With every action, we expect an equal or greater reaction.

Those reactions reshape positive and constructive feedback loops into shallow praise and subconscious attempts at microdosing; unleashing oxytocin (‘cuddle’ hormone), dopamine (reward/reinforcement), endorphins (positive/pleasure), serotonin (significant/important) to feel better in the moment.

Feedback loops can evolve into chemical loops and dependency. Too much, results in addiction to whatever behaviors trigger the increase of those feelings. And, each time, you and your followers are pulled away from their attention or focus to feel and react to microdoses, they and you are not only experiencing hits but also are becoming conditioned to expect regular interruption and distraction. Your mind has to speed up in order to compensate.

This behavior becomes habitual.

Over time, your ability to create, think or focus deeply, flow, are undermined. And over time, your well-being, mental health and self-love are also deteriorating, opening the door to narcissism, anxiety, low self-esteem, loneliness, stress, poor body imageand even depression.

Make no mistake. None of this is an accident.

“Technology is meant to hijack psychological vulnerabilities and exploit our minds’ weaknesses,” according to former Google Design Ethicist Tristan Harris.

Awareness is where the journey toward a healthier, mindful and fantastically creative life begins.

You were not put on this planet to define your existence through the false validation of strangers. You are more important, able and beautiful beyond any number of likes, comments or followers can attest.

Stop waiting for happiness to find you. You are what you believe you are. You are what you believe you can do. Your friends, family and loved ones know the real you. If they don’t, then let them in. Let “you” shine through words, actions and your creations.

Live your life as if no one is watching.

Brian Solis is principal analyst and futurist at Altimeter, the digital analyst group at Prophet. He’s also a world-renowned keynote speaker and 7x best-selling author. His latest book, X: Where Business Meets Design, explores the future of brand and customer engagement through experience design. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Invite him to speak at your next event.