Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about content consumption — what we consume, how we consume it, and why we do. As someone who spends a ton of time creating, sharing, and consuming content, I try not to be judgmental about content consumption but, instead, try to be curious about it.
Because what we consume creates who we are, it’s so important to be aware of what we’re consuming. Paying attention to content consumed might sound like obvious advice in this digital age, but many of us (myself included!) tend to consume whatever is given to us, without really considering if it is beneficial.
To get to the heart of my own content consumption, I created a list of questions and I thought I’d share them with you in case you, too, want to take a closer look at what, how, and why you’re consuming content. As you answer them, try your best not to judge your habits. There is no “right” way to consume content, and we are all products of the culture in which we live, so try to think of these less as test questions and more as self-awareness inquiries.
Questions to Consider
- What types of content do you consume most often?
- What is your preferred format for consuming content (video, written, etc.)? Why do you prefer that format?
- How does what you’re consuming typically make you feel? What content makes you feel at ease? What content makes you feel stressed?
- Do you pay attention to what’s happening in your body when you consume content? (If not, try it! It can tell you a lot about how the content is making you feel!)
- Do you ever stop consuming if the content makes you feel bad or bored?
- How often do you actively choose content (rather than having it chosen for you by an algorithm)?
- Do you ever generate your own content? If not, do you wish you did?
- How much time do you spend consuming content per day? (Remember: no judgment!)
- What usually causes you to seek out content? (Are you seeking information? Are you trying to keep up-to-date? Are you looking to be entertained? Are you doing it out of habit?)
- How frequently do you explore different types/formats of content? (For example, how often do you follow new creators or look for news at a new outlet?)
- Do you ever consume the same content repeatedly (rewatch shows, reread books, etc.)?
- How diverse — both in content and format — is what you consume? Do you seek news from a variety of sources? Do you follow a diverse selection of content creators?
- How frequently does what you consume apply directly to (or serve a purpose in) your life?
- Do you often share content (with those you know or with others online)?
- How do you feel after answering these questions? Is there anything you would like to change about the way you consume content?
Consuming content is part of life — it’s always been done and always will be — but now we have access to so much, which means it’s up to us to be selective about what we consume. I plan to come back and check in with these questions periodically to remind myself that, though it might not always feel like it, for the most part I’m in control of how, what, and when I consume content. It’s an act of self-love to check in with myself and make sure that the content I’m consuming is the content I want to be consuming.