When I met my husband, I was also getting a lot of calls from other men. We’d started to get serious. And then my phone started ringing. Out from the distant past popped calls from guys I hadn’t seen in years. And some new ones showed up as well. But it was more an annoyance at this point of the game. Where were they all when I was single. He said something that cured my tendency to give my attention away. Three words that changed my thinking forever and it wasn’t I Love You.
Here’s what he said:
That is BACKGROUND NOISE!
When it comes to digital drama and time management, we all get frustrated when suddenly seeing that our minds are overwhelmed with too much noise.
We can’t focus on what is important when we are constantly distracted by other stuff. Sure social media is a big sales tool. We get a lot of business from our social media connections.
But to be productive, profitable, and prosperous there are certain things that have to happen. It’s not just time management – it’s mind management.
Turn off the background noise: Between emails, Facebook posts, tweets, and Pinterest pics, I could waste an entire day trying to ‘quickly’ check on stuff and then get lost in nothing relevant. Plus, I saw the same business promos on 3 or 4 platforms. It’s kind of a downfall of Facebook, but when social media is just too noisy, you can’t focus.
You know how you get when watching a show or a movie and it is constantly interrupted for a commercial — often the same commercial at each break? (actually, you may not watch tv…but you get the idea, right? ) We turn off the volume. We kill the noise. And that’s exactly what I’m doing with my social media exchanges.
Kill the notifications.
When someone I know posts or tweets, I don’t need to know about it. I’ll look eventually. Kill the duplicates. When I friended or liked certain people, I ended up signing up for a newsletter. I recently figure out that if I see a link on their Facebook page to their latest blog post, I don’t need to sign up for the mailing list. Or vice versa. Then I realized I wasn’t reading most of the emails anyway.
Or create a two new email addresses just for business promos AND only put people on there whom you really like.
Use one for SWIPE stuff and another for those important emails from Joshua Boswell, Bob Bly and others whom you know and respect.
I just culled my Facebook list down to half what it was. I interact with real life friends and some business colleagues. The rest are either on my business page, I am on theirs, or I get to exchange personal emails with them.
How to streamline your eLife:
Cull your list: If you are seeing duplicate posts, cut it down to one place. You can stay in touch on a group list without adding every group member to your personal page.
If all you see is business and sales promos, unfriend them and consider liking their business page. Or Not.
If you never exchange actual discussions and they seem to only be there for show, dump them.
If you suddenly realize you have a reaction to everything they post – especially if it’s religious or political, unfriend or block them.
If their friend list is over 500 and they never really say anything, and they are not a family member, just unfriend them.
If their friend list is over 1000, and they are not a celebrity whom you like, they are marketing or list building.
I recently unfriended half of my list. A year ago, I culled the list by removing lurkers. Last month, I culled it to a workable minimum and have decided an upper limit of 250 will be perfect.
It’s not mean. It’s necessary.
How important is Twitter anyway? I think it is fun, helps to find people and see what’s up. I follow a lot of companies and people. It’s just a quick snippet where I can get a bit more intimate with strangers.
I don’t use it much. At all. And I don’t get emailed every time someone tweets something.
It’s a great business tool. I love it for that. But when it first came out it was easy to use LinkedIn for networking. Now — it’s like the worlds resume data bank. I find a lot of job listings. I find a lot of information — but I rarely find contacts that want to connect.
I use it when focused on networking or looking for information. I try to make business connections. It’s only as good as the work I put into it. I update my profile every month. I don’t go out of my way to work this media because it has not given great results. Put your profile up there. Connect with true business associates. Join a few groups.See what it does, but if it doesn’t produce, put it on the back burner.
I know this is the new cool thing, but really? Noise – just noise. Pretty noise, for sure, but it’s all noise. As cool as this is, I see no business value.
How much time am I saving?
LOTS! I can’t really say but I can tell you that I am thinking more clearly, find more time to create, write, and market to targeted audiences. I feel like I cleaned house and suddenly have more energy. My attitude is better. My mental clarity isn’t jammed up with noise. I can find the important emails. I don’t have to weed through hundreds of sales promos to find out what a friend or colleague has written. And I’m not so susceptible to non stop sales pitches. And my mental clarity means I have time for doing things I love, that make me happy. And that, my friends, makes me a better me.
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