Digital Disruption

The resilient person believes that he (possibly with the help of others) is able to deal with the problems that cross his path throughout life.  In that sense life can never be a burden, only a challenge. – Aaron Antonovsky

Our second area of focus in building your resilience will be our capacity to solve problems and for this specific blog we will be looking at how our digital usage affects this specific skill. The skill of gratitude from the previous blog helps us to view life in a healthy way, whereas the skill of problem solving helps us to look at challenges and know we can find a solution. Resilient people are capable of solving problems, they are able to use creative thinking, analytical thinking, and strategic thinking to assess a problem and work towards a solution. This requires you think about something before you google it, this requires you to find inner inspiration before you go online to find inspiration. I was confronted with how much people started to rely on digital usage to solve problems when I recently engaged with a lady on the topic of social media usage.

“But how will anybody know about me! How will they know about what I do or where I go? How will I know which events are happening around the city to attend to market my services?” This is a very intense response I got from a lady while telling her about the work Cal Newport has been doing on Deep Work and our capacity to work without distraction and interruption, and how he is on no social media network. Advising someone to take a break from Social Media was quite obviously not the right advice. I see many people endlessly scrolling , posting and likeing on their devices, everywhere we go, people are on their phones.

Technology & Social Media:

The last three months we have seen the rise of emphasis on how social media is influencing our society and the reports have not been good. With releases like Cal Newport’s “Digital Minimalism“ and more recently the release of the documentary “The Great Hack”, we see people starting to ask questions about the role of social media in our lives. Most people don’t think about the role our devices and social media plays. Our phones thave become our problem solvers, they portray the role of anything from our counsellors and psychiatrists to our online doctors.  We hand our self-responsibility and problem solving skills ability over to the different platforms and expect them to give us answers to questions. Missing the opportunity develop our skills to solve problems, to taken the time to think and discover what we are truly capable of.

Cal Newport defines Digital Minimalism as; “A philosophy of technology use in which you focus your online time on a small number of carefully selected and optimized activities that strongly support things you value, and then happily miss out on everything else.” In building our resilience we want to focus on growing our problem solving skill and use digital platforms in a way that assist us in this.

His book goes into great detail on how to be intentional with your use of devices and Social Media. We want to use these platforms with all the benefits it brings and at the same time be disciplined about the measure we allow it to solve our problems for us. Our resilience comes in when we start using our devices in an intentional way that helps us to solve problems, but not solve the problems for us. Technology and Social Media can be of great benefit personally and in business, but if we don’t work with it in an intentional way, it could be the source of comparison, interruption and distraction in our lives. 


  1. Put out a weekly time to do deep work. In this time focus on working through and solving problems.
  2. Minimalize the apps you download. Choose specific apps that you will benefit from and define in which way they are helping you. 
  3. Design timeframes where you engage on Social Media.
  4. Delete Social Media apps from your phone, rather go online from your laptop or for business purposes use a scheduling app.
  5. Silence notifications of your different apps.
  6. Put your phone in a different room than your bedroom at night.


Written by Magriet Badenhorst – Xpand Consultant, Coach & Trainer

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