LLook at your computer’s browser right now.
If you have less than ten tabs open, you can skip to the next article. If you don’t, keep reading.
Recently, I had a conversation with a classmate in which he said to me, “I like having 50 open tabs because it makes me feel like productive.”
And then I watched him spend three minutes trying to figure out which tab had the document we were working on.
The American ideal of maximalism and having lots of things has, unfortunately, recently translated into our online presence. People love having so many apps, databases and tabs open as much as possible so they can present to people, “hey, look at me, look to everything I do.
Your 50 tabs don’t make you more productive, they don’t make you smarter and they don’t make you more organized. Quite frankly, they hurt you more than they help.
When you go to class and listen to your teacher’s lecture, are you trying to do some other work while they’re talking?
And while the obvious answer is yes, you know that when you leave this conference you will have very little understanding of what they discussed. It’s because your brain is not designed to have multiple sources of information put in your brain at the same time.
A fantastic study done on your brain’s ability to process multiple pieces of informationmation at the same time was Landry and Bartling.
In this study, Landry and Bartling asked a collective of undergraduate students to try to memorize a series of random letters under the effect of articulatory suppression. Zion technique.
In this case, the articulatory suppresZion’s technique repeated the numbers one and two while memorizing the series. Students who did not experiment with the deletion technique (control group) were able to memorize 75% more letters.
This is because the brain’s device for remembering audible signals, the phonological loop, is unable to correctly interpret two signals coming in at the same time.
This explains why you might be able to working on your homework very easily but not being able to understand what your teacher is saying. This also applies to the brain’s visuospatial sketchbook, which is responsible for visual stimulation.
If you need to apply it to your computerst screen and web browser, you begin to understand why having 50 open tabs can be more harmful than helpful.
When you open your Safari browser and are greeted with last night’s homework, YouTube, ESPN and the New York Times your brain becomes biologically overwhelmed. You may not want it, but your brain immediately begins to allocate its already scarce resources over half a dozen the subjects.
However, in reality, you have to focus on one thing, studying. The easiest and fastest way to improve your brain’s ability to focus and figure things out is to close all those random tabs.
Not only will you immediately free up some of your computer’s RAM, but you your brain will immediately heave a sigh of relief.
Now, I’m not saying you should never access those tabs again. sometimes they are quite important.
I guess the main reason why anyone would want to keep 50 tabs open is because they are being stalked by the question of “what should I do when I need to access these tabs again?”
This is where my proposal for this the item comes into play.
I would suggest creating a centralized productivity workspace for your school/work life. This way, you can centralize all the links you use frequently, your to-do list, your calendar, and everything you use for school.
I would suggest Notion, which is what I personally use, another great option is Obsidian.
Both serve the same purpose, centralizing your life and practicing digital minimalism.
Also, specifically speaking to my fellow Mac users, remove some things from your dock. You don’t need podcasts, Apple News, or any of Apple’s Microsoft Suite counterparts. Only have apps that you need to access immediately. Everything else can be hidden behind the CMD + Space function.
This way you free up your screen and your brain can do what it’s supposed to do: think.