Rethinking Social: Where Do I Invest My (Life)Time?

Rethinking Social: Where Do I Invest My (Life)Time?


These days between roughly 9 AM and 5 PM this is the screen that welcomes me when I (try to) visit a social networking site. Using bookmarklets I can still post but I can’t visit, browse, read, or otherwise kill time.

Why Block?

Self-control is a limited resource; I need it for other things.

Making choices ahead of time and then setting it up so it’s automated and you’re cranking widgets is much more efficient.

Automate your decisions.

Yes But Why Block In The First Place?

checkbox Calm.

I want things to slow down.

The hurried rush of this, then that, 10-second touch-base here, press Like there, has got to stop.

The payback came quickly and is still building. A sense of calm. Expanded focus. Heightened concentration. Much longer time in The Zone. More books that I read more calmly. A richer InstaPaper list. Less media snacking. Balance.

checkbox Procrastination feeds on distractions.

"Before writing this post let me check email — oh, and I should be social and not ignore an @reply on Twitter… Well, might as well do a full round then and make sure Facebook and Google+ are covered too."

It doesn’t take that long. Maybe a minute or two if it’s really just a quick round? Longer if you stumble on "stuff". Much longer if you take into account the task-switching time.

checkbox I want to make my relationships count.

The first people to go to are the ones around me. The second my close family and friends I can only reach online. Then my social network.

3 Replies to “Rethinking Social: Where Do I Invest My (Life)Time?”

  1. Ruud, I have those same checkmarks. Social media distractions is one of those things that makes me often think: “I can’t stop eating the candy.

    When I do abstain, I’m in that zone. At the same time, I feel like I’m missing out. However, when I do stay away from social sites to focus on getting work done or to be with friends and family (sometimes for a few days), I’m totally re-energized.

    Now, I just talked about me. Bottom line, thank YOU for writing this and motivating many of us to find balance and self-control (or use a little help.)!

  2. I have felt at times that I’m missing out or might be missing out. But the funny thing is that my online social time is getting better. More rewarding.

    And you know that term we throw around in social; engagement? I’m more engaged now with what’s posted. I read one thing. Listen to one person.

    But despite the benefits — I need that blocker. Not going for that instant rush, that instant gratification, is sometimes as hard as when I quit smoking or when I resist my favorite dessert (ice cream with whip cream)

  3. <3 it – "not going for that instant rush"

    Your desire for and practice of quality vs. quantity is where I also want to be. Been there. Done that. Miss the state of focus.

    THANKS for sharing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *