For a long time, I had consumed about 30 to over 60 minutes of recommended videos before what I really wanted to watch.
You might say I had about 60 minutes of a fun time.
While it could be true, but I had at least 30 minutes spent on something I was forced to do not something I wanted. That was completely wasted time.
And a repetition of that waste of time is absolutely a bad habit.
Make the key invisible
To break a bad habit, make the cue invisible.
I found that the cue here is the first recommended video. Once I click on the first video, I go ahead and enter the rabbit hole that hopefully ends before I remember my purpose; video after another and another.
I tried to break that bad habit by making that cue invisible.
So I put a chrome extension DF Tube.
This extension is distraction-free for Youtube to allow yourself to focus while using YouTube for work, recreation or education.
It stops youtube recommendations that come next when you view a certain video.
The extension kills that habit so the time I spend on Youtube videos is just the time that I really want. Not the time that youtube wants.
Make it hard to reach
But here comes another problem, this extension suppresses recommendations when you stream a certain video. But allows recommendations when you view the youtube homepage.
So I found that I spent around 10 to 20 minutes of recommended videos before the content that I really wanted.
The solution here is to make that bad habit hard to reach.
You have two scenarios to apply that solution.
Google the video you want to watch and write youtube on the search bar next to the keyword(s) you're working for. That way, you separate yourself from the platform recommendations.
Another scenario is when you want to complete a certain video that you already watched part of it, maybe, yesterday. Get it from the browser history instead of the seductive autocompletion of "yout..." on the address bar.
And remember this:
The best way to break a bad habit is to make it impractical to do.
~ James Clear, Author of Atomic Habits