Book Cover - Book Review: Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World

Most digital applications, including social networks, are not good or bad, but they are for sure dangerous. They can be installed with just one click, and come without a manual, at least not the one you need to use these applications at your advantage.

The core of the problem is our attention. If it was an unlimited resource, there would be no problem to clutter our devices with so many applications. But it isn’t. We must get back the control of our attention, and reading this book is a good start.

This book is not about turning the clock back and living as if these technologies have never existed. This book is about using them while still being present in the physical world.

I like the idea of measuring the value that digital tools bring to us compared to the time we invested in them. We must not seek value. All applications have value. We must try to extract only the core value we are looking for and ignore the rest. The question is not simply which application to use or not, but how. You can check Facebook on your desktop computer on Friday evening and still get the value you are looking for (note that Facebook will certainly not extract the same value from you as before). Each chapter ends with a list of similar practices to try.

Digital Minimalism is not the definitive book on the subject (I think we still ignore most of the answers) but is a great contribution that can change your life. The best motivation to reclaim your attention is to finally start new activities like playing board games with kids, and finally get the fulfilling life you deserve.

About the author

Julien Sobczak works as a software developer for Scaleway, a French cloud provider. He is a passionate reader who likes to see the world differently to measure the extent of his ignorance. His main areas of interest are productivity (doing less and better), human potential, and everything that contributes in being a better person (including a better dad and a better developer).

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