What I’m getting at in the headline is that the Internet is most likely the cause of your impotence when it comes to productivity. How many people pick up their smartphones and check something online or in an app in the morning, instead of picking up a camera and capturing a sunrise?
I bet 99% of us look at a smartphone before anything else in the morning. If only your first thought out of bed was “What photo will I capture today?” think about how much more you would achieve.
The Internet isn’t bad, it’s the near-infinite stream of novel information at your fingertips that is—this hope of finding a gem in a pile of crap. This is what’s causing your lack of willpower, and killing your productivity when it comes to photography. Are you really happy after scrolling through your Instagram or Facebook feed for 5 minutes? Is it really engaging? What did you get from it yesterday… can you even remember? If you can’t, this activity probably shouldn’t be a priority.
It’s this easy access, this constant distraction that could be causing you to become unproductive. Take a moment and think about why you’re checking your phone before you pick it up. What are you feeling or thinking? Most likely you want a reward, a Facebook like or Instagram follower. That possibility of getting a reward is the catalyst. You are more likely to be interested in minuscule achievements than the thought of taking a photo.
Constant novelty and access at a click feeds the compulsion, this is where Internet addiction stems from. Apps are designed to be addictive, the content doesn’t even need to be good. All it needs is a trigger, an action, and a reward, and you’ll start to invest your time.
Think about what people do when they are alone, bored or waiting; you and I probably turn to our phones to entertain ourselves. We consume information, even though most of it is neither educational nor memorable… it’s just something to do.
You know what else you could be doing? Taking a photo.
Nowadays we have our phone at arm’s length all the time—do the same thing with your camera. Take it with you everywhere you go, and the next time you are bored, be aware of it. Grab your camera instead of your phone and create an image. Entertain yourself through creativity.
While everyone else is reading their Facebook feed, you’ll be outside taking photos instead.
About the author: A.B Watson is a New Zealand photographer based in Auckland. The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author. To see more of his work, head over to his website or follow him on Facebook and Instagram. This post was also published here.