The Unexpected Way to Gain Deep Insights from Social Media

Ev Chapman
June 30, 2024
•
3 minutes

Social media gets a bad wrap these days.

And for some good reasons.

It's easy to get caught up with the doomscrolling, letting it distract us, getting into arguments we shouldn't, helping us procrastinate, not doing good things for our mental health.

And yet. It's still my biggest category of saved items in my knowledge library & serves me up a wealth of new ideas every single day.

For all it's not so good, there is something pretty special about it that we sometimes miss - There are so many amazing people who are sharing their knowledge freely in a concisely packaged way that's easy to consume.

Doesn't it make sense to take advantage of that and use these platforms as a way to propel our personal growth?

So before you declare bankruptcy on social media altogether. Let's look at how we can fix our feeds so they can be a mechanism for our growth?

How I use Social Media As A Daily Inspiration Source Of New Ideas & Insights

Curate Your Feed With A Spark List

Social Media platforms profit from your attention.

Which means they build the feed around behaviour psychology that keeps you scrolling.

The more time you spend on their platform, the more profit they stand to make.

And while the feed can sometimes bring us great new people to follow and insights. It isn't the best place to spend the majority of our time if we want social media to be a place where we gain insights & ideas.

So we need to take control & curate our own feeds. I used to create all sorts of complicated lists on different topics I was interested in. But now I stick to one simple list - I call it The Spark List.

When choosing accounts for this list I simply ask: Does this person share things that spark me?

If they do they're on the list!

Managing this one list then becomes pretty easy:

Now you're not at the mercy of some algorithm creator waiting for good ideas. You're literally putting yourself in the firing line of great ideas every time you open up your spark feed.

Save Any Ideas That Inspire Into A Spark File

Now that you have a spark list of people who always deliver you amazing value - it won't be long before inspiration, ideas & insights are hitting you left right and centre.

Don't fall into the trap of thinking 'I'll come back to that later.'

You won't.

The only foolproof way to remember ideas is to capture them.

And to capture them in one place to make it easy to review them later.

Most platforms make it easy to save or bookmark posts. But I rarely use those features. Mostly because I forget or it's just too hard to go to every platform and collect all my saved posts.

Instead I send any posts I want to save into my note-taking app. That way they are all saved in one place that I open up everyday.

Here are three ways you can use to capture posts into your note-taking app:

  • Readwise - This works well with Twitter mostly. You can DM a post to Readwise and it will pop up in your notes app.
  • Notion - Use the web clipper to save any posts that spark you.
  • Mobile Share Sheet - When on mobile just hit the share button and send the post to your favourite note-taking app like Tana or Evernote or Apple Notes.

The MOST important thing is to choose one single way to capture + one single place to capture.

This simplicity makes it much easier to stay organised and ensures that you will actually revisit the content you have saved.

If you need a place to capture your thoughts & ideas you might want to check out my ​Knowledge Hub ​which is the perfect Notion or Tana template to help you collect, make sense of & build your own unique ideas.

Turn Saved Posts Into Your Own Insights With A Spark Practice

Let's be real. Simply saving posts & bookmarks just makes you an information hoarder.

If we don't take those ideas and apply our own thinking to they'll always just be some other person's ideas that were nice, but mean nothing to use.

They'll never become your own embodied & embedded knowledge.

To transform ideas you've encountered into your own insight you need a practice that turns down the noise & turns up your own thinking. I call mine The Spark Practice.

How It Works:

  • Every morning I wake up, make coffee & open my Spark File (by now it's filled with posts & notes that have sparked me).
  • I choose a note I've saved to use as my thinking prompt.
  • Then I ask: What do I think about this? What's generated in my mind when I encounter this idea?
  • And I start writing.

Here's the thing - we rarely have time or space to think in our crazy, overstimulated world. Which is a shame. Because thinking really is the only conduit where we turn those external ideas into our own personal insights.

So don't skimp on this step - it's the most fun in my opinion & the one that makes it all worth it. The more you spend time in this kind of practice, the more you'll grow in all areas of your life.

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Whenever you're ready to turn your unique personal knowledge into powerful ideas - here are three ways I can help:

  1. Want to get Sparked like this each week? Sign up to my weekly newsletter - The Spark Newsletter where I deliver one actionable tip every Sunday to help you bring your ideas to life & share them with the world.
  2. Need a place to capture ideas & insights? You might want to check out my template ​The Knowledge Hub​ where you can turn all that collected information into your own insights.
  3. Learn how you can build your own spark practice & build ideas that are worth sharing with the world. ​Sign up for the Atomic Sprint Waitlist​ starting 27th July.

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Liked thIS? Then You Might Like My SPARK Newsletter...

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