January 9, 2012

Can't Get Any Work Done Because Of Facebook, Twitter Or Google+

We log on just to see what is going on and before we know it we are sucked in to the vortex of social networking. Those few minutes turn into hours and before we know it we didn’t get things done we planned and the day is gone.

Pros of Social Sites

Don’t get me wrong, they have their place in life and can be very helpful for many things:

Networking- helping promote your work whether it’s writing, performing, web designing or other career. Social networking sites are a wonderful marketing tool.

Self Help- people with depression or other mental issues talk to people who in turn boost their ego and help their sense of wellbeing. It can be a virtual group therapy session.

Shy people- some wouldn’t have nearly as many friends if they weren’t communicating online. Visiting with the security of a monitor makes it easier to talk to people they ordinarily would not converse with.

Disabled people- those with mobility issues are able to have an active social life and even find love.

Cons of social sites

Wasted time- some lose track of how long they are logged on feeling they need to wait and see what people have to say about their latest clever update or post. They look for particular friends to be online and don’t want to miss funny or interesting comments by their buddies. Interacting with friends is not a bad thing but when it takes us away from obligations and duties it is not so good.

Trolls- these are people who get enjoyment by making other people feel bad. They have been known to cause suicidal actions among vulnerable victims. Basically, they are the scum of the earth.

Viruses- visiting with people across the globe without physical contact protects us from colds and the latest flu bug. Unfortunately it doesn’t always keep our computers from being infected by crawlers some unhappy media user has developed.

Ruined reputation- some people don’t know where to draw the line and post all manner of relationship issues, party photos and rude remarks about employers.

Stolen identity or possessions- giving out too much personal information helps thieves steal your identity as well as know when you will be out of town so they can break into your house. You’ve made it easy for them because your address and length of time you’ll be gone are posted.

Monitoring social media time

So what do you do if you find yourself having trouble tearing yourself away from what’s going on in Facebook world?

Set a schedule.

Make a list of what you need to get done along with duration of the task. Set a timer and when it goes off move on to the next chore. A buzzer or ringing noise has more of an impact than simply looking up at a clock every now and then.

Simply giving yourself a time doesn’t always work. We’ll say, “I’m only going to be on here an hour,” and before you know it you are well into the next one and you figure you’ve wasted part of this segment so why not wait until the next chime of the clock.

Disconnect the Internet

If you are working from home and aren’t sharing the web with other people, simply unplug the cord, if you are wireless, turn off the router.

Sometimes not getting on at all helps us. Logging in for a short time may not do the trick and staying off all day or more helps.

I do this for hours and sometimes days at a time using an old fashioned dictionary to check spelling. Yes, people do still use hard copy books. Imagine that?

The world will not end if you do not check in.

Contrary to the Mayan calendar, the world will not end soon and even if it did you being on Google+ wouldn’t make a difference.

We use our phones, our televisions as well as our computers these days to stay connected to the world at large, worried we might miss something. Look back at the past two days and recall any big news that happened. Even if something incredible did arise, could you have done anything to change it by being online? Most likely not.

People read your blog more when you are absent.

One thing I have noticed is that activity on my blog websites and articles picks up when I’m offline more. People miss you and since they aren’t getting to read your words on Twitter or wherever else you reside virtually, they’ll look for your words on your blog site(s).

In the beginning, you need to gather your social audience and I do not mean you should leave indefinitely but once you’ve collected a following you should notice a peak in views when you are offline for a day or more.

Marketing is great but if you spend all of your time selling and no time creating then what are you promoting?