Or How to be productive in spite of Social Media screaming in your eyes?
Lately I have been asking myself this question. Not only that, but I’ve noticed other authors and bloggers have wondered about it too.
Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love interacting with my friends on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, Eeeeeh, Yeah, there are more sites, more social media time gobblers I’m involved in. Shoot! No wonder I feel spread thin and there’s not enough hours in a day to attend to them all. But I digress.
Productiveness and procrastination don’t go hand in hand. (See how they start out the same?) Hey! That’s not fair they both start with pro, which is latin for either ‘contra’ or ‘for’. Although in modern day language pro is mostly known as meaning ‘for’ or ‘in favour of’, a positive preposition rather than one associated with unwanted things. Yet procrastination is something we do not want, nor need, when we have to be productive. So how do we keep up with social media and not fall into the trap of procrastination without even realising it?
Why does it seem time on social media streams by you faster than in real life. Five minutes Facebook equals an hour at the very minimum in real life! There is something definitely dodgy going on there. Anyway, another sidetrack, keep on target Luce!
For me setting a limit to the time allotted to the Book of Faces to fart around on works. (Actually I set a timer to clock my presence on the various sites.) I don’t put a limit on the time spent in my Tweet team, because that’s ‘work’. No, the time to just interact and do nothing special. Nothing else than read funny posts, borrow great pictures (the funny ones I love most and Grumpy Cat) and just chat with my friends. That is farting around. 🙂 That doesn’t have to be in one stretch, but I do keep track of the time I lose there. 5 Minutes here, 10 there, until I’ve spent an hour. Google+ gets a little more because those are mostly readers, which throws that time into the work hours too.
Twitter, now that’s a whole different ball game. Because I’ve initially started out just sending out tweets (or twittering as I like to call them) then I discovered retweeting (a very good way of showing people you read their messages and think more people should know about it) and now I also interact with those who take the time to send me direct messages. Easy as pie and fun as well, when you get the hang of being succinct (a feat not easy for me). You have to be able to put an entire message in … a mere 140 characters. Which sounds like a lot, but it really isn’t. I’ve discovered that people don’t mind getting the odd promotional tweet, as long as you remember to also send out general messages, and things of interest. Not just shout to the wind that your book is the best thing since sliced bread and you’ve had yet another great review. I grow tired of reading those. Actually I don’t even read those anymore. Skim over them and disregard. (I do retweet them because those authors swear by them and who am I to tell them to stop with the same old same old) Same goes for messages which are sent to me through Just Unfollow. Generic non-messages which are annoying and inbox cluttering.
Anyway, long story short, for me it works to set a time limit on farting around, or allow myself a day of doing nothing but. As long as you know you’re wasting precious time you can act upon it and do something about it.
What do you do? How do you avoid the trap called Social Media?