I stop the social media race

As I’m questioning my use of social media, I’m writing this article about the different networks I have tested and how to use them well.

It started with Facebook a few years ago. Then I tried Pinterest, Bloglovin, Twitter and Instagram. I met interesting people, I read interesting articles thanks to those social media but I also wasted a lot of time. At the moment, Snapchat is the thing. A few months ago, it was Instagram. When reading bloggers asking their readers to follow them on Snapchat, I realised that it’s an endless cycle. Every year, there will be a new trendy social network that will eclipse the others… until the next one.

I don’t intend to subscribe to 50 social media, especially as I realise that some of them didn’t bring me anything. When you have a blog, it’s normal to be active on the main social networks. But my aim is to be more selective from now. You don’t have to subscribe to all social media. I think it’s good to chose them depending on your interests. For example I don’t do videos so there is no use for me to subscribe to Youtube. On the contrary, Instagram is interesting to share my drawings and pictures. And logically I won’t subscribe to Snapchat because I don’t see what it could bring to me.

comic: snapchat

Besides social media have a major drawback for me: they generate a huge waste of time. Social media are the worst ennemies of the procrastinator. Especially as their conceptors do everything they can to make us addicted (this article explains how). When you look at people having their nose in their phone, it seems they have succeeded.

So how to stop wasting your time on those addictive and time-consuming websites?

* Putting things into perspective

Social media are very useful tools but they can have negative effects: envy when people display their wealth, frustration when people show their seemingly perfect life, cult of thinness concealed behind the ‘healthy’ trend, hidden marketing, judging people by their number of followers… It’s worth reviewing the positive and the negative that social media bring to you. And why not sorting out and unfollowing some accounts that don’t make you feel good.

* Disconnecting

Total disconnection was the choice of instagramer Essena O’Neill. In 2015, her tell-all video created buzz online. She denounced the fact that social media are fake, people are defined by numbers and social media have become a business. Then she deleted all her social media accounts. This is a radical but efficient way to save time.

drawing with a quote by Essena O'Neill: You don't have to prove your life on instagram for it to be a good life

* Detox

Temporarily disconnecting, during a weekend or a month, can get you to realize how much time you save when you’re not connected. If it’s too difficult, you can also define a maximum number of hours per day to spend online.

* Setting limits

You can set some rules regarding the use of social media. For example:
– no smartphone in your bedroom
– no social media at certain times of the day (during the meals, one hour before bedtime…)
– turning off notifications on your smartphone

The best is to write your ‘rules’ on a paper that will stay right in front of your eyes.

As for me, I have reduced my social media consumption but I deserve no special credit: I have taken advantage of my soul-searching, some social media boredom and the current decline of traditional social media to connect less often and I’m happy to save some precious time smoothly.

drawing: I've finished my article that criticises social media! The only thing left for me to do is to promote it on Facebook, Twitter, Bloglovin, Instagram, Pinterest...

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Best Wishes for 2016 (and anti-procrastination review)

Here is the end of the year and it’s time for a review of my 2015 resolution. My theme of the year was action which implied eliminating procrastination.

Of course, I haven’t totally stopped procrastinating but I have managed to limit the damage.

So I share with you what helps me fighting procrastination:

* Publish my resolution on this blog

When I announced my resolution on my blog, I knew that I would write a review one year after and I didn’t want to fail publicly.

* Useful procrastination

* Anti-procrastination slogans

I have inspiring quotes and anti-procrastination slogans written on my to-do list and on my desktop.

drawing : just do it as an anti-procrastination motto

* Looking at the bigger picture

It’s asking questions : Why am I procrastinating now? What am I avoiding?

It’s also thinking of what could make me proud of myself this evening.

* Reading Zen Habits blog

As the name suggests, this blog gives advice on how to get into good habits while being zen.

* Realising that procrastination is an everyday struggle

That also means that if you fail one day, you can still succeed the following day.

* My guilt-free motto: ‘It’s never too late to do good’

Having learned a lot, I would like to continue my investigations so I have chosen effectiveness as theme of the year.

I wish you a Happy New Year and Effectiveness in realising your dreams 🙂

Best Wishes card illustrated with a Christmas tree and a little girl watching stars

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Useful procrastination

My theme for this year being action, I am currently testing methods against procrastination. For the moment, the techniques I have tried are not efficient in the long run. No magic bullet then but there is a technique that is working well for me. I call it useful procrastination.

I give you an example. I don’t like cleaning indows. I do it the less often possible. However in one particular case, I enjoy cleaning the windows: it is when I have to research a particularly boring topic on the Internet. So instead of researching my topic, I do the windows. Suddenly window cleaning seems almost pleasant compared to boring topic researching.

The idea is to take advantage of procrastinating to do something useful. It can be cleaning, tidying, sorting papers, making phone calls etc. The important thing is to do something useful even if you don’t do what you planned at first.

And as for me, I know there will soon be a new urgent and dull task (some bookkeeping for example) that will make my research on the Internet look so much more attractive.

Drawing of a character asking: Are you sure that updating your facebook status is not useful procrastination?

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Best Wishes and resolutions for 2015

Best Wishes card illustrated with picture of Valletta, Malta by night

Valletta by night

Last year in my New Year article I shared my 2014 resolutions and theme. One year later, it’s time for a short review.

Respect, the theme I chose for 2014, was very enlightening. Just by asking myself : are my decisions consistent with my theme? I looked at things from a different perspective.

Regarding resolutions, I kept some of them but I abandoned some others (such as exercising and less procrastinating ahem). I think that it’s difficult to focus on several goals at the same time.

Therefore this year I make it simple: I set myself one objective which is also my theme. This year’s theme is action. In other words, I declare war on procrastination 😉

So I wish you a Happy New Year full of exciting projects and realisations 🙂

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