Posts Tagged: productivity

How To Manage Internet Overwhelm (Without Going Off The Grid + Still Get Stuff Done)


I’m on the internet all blessed day. Truly.  I need to be online for my business and I genuinely enjoy reading blogs and watching videos of cats and weird Japanese game shows.

Even though I’m a die hard, dyed-in-the-wool, down-to-the-quick-of-my-bones Internet Super Fan, it can get overwhelming. The never-ending email, the constant updates, the perceived need to be awesome across so many different platforms.

Here’s how I turn down the roar on the internet without totally tuning out:

Unsubscribe from newsletters
There are some newsletters that are really, genuinely helpful that I really, actually open and read.  Then there are the people/businesses who add you to their list without your permission and bombard you three times a week with promotions.  Good day to you, sir.  I’d like a heaping helping of unsubscription, please.

Turn off updates from Twitter, Facebook, and your blog
For YEARS I’d get notifications every time someone commented on a Facebook status, or followed me on Twitter or left a comment on my blog. This meant that opening my inbox was an exercise in exhaustion and anxiety.  Adjust your settings so you get only the most important notifications - if you get any at all.  Set aside a time once or twice a day to log into your accounts, check the comments, and then get back to work or (better yet) get away from a screen and do something awesome.

Schedule everything in advance
95% of my social media is scheduled in advance.  Sit down every Friday afternoon and spend an hour or so scheduling your tweets and Facebook updates then go enjoy your weekend.

Block yourself from social media
Left to my own devices, I’ll check Facebook and Twitter every 45 minutes.  BECAUSE WHAT IF SOMEONE SAID SOMETHING FUNNY AND I MISSED IT?  Shockingly enough, this is not a recipe for productivity.  I use LeechBlock to bar me from social media and other tempting websites during work hours.

Reevaluate your need for all the social media platforms
Do you want permission to opt out of Facebook or Instagram or Pinterest or Vine? This is it. You don’t have to do it if you don’t want to. There are super successful people who don’t use these platforms. You don’t need to do everything all the time.  I don’t care about fashion or crafts or cooking enough to use Pinterest.  Alex Franzen doesn’t have a Facebook account - like, even for her friends!

Reevaluate your need for a data plan on your phone
What?  Yes.  I don’t have a data plan and I love it.  Do I really need to read a tiny screen on the bus when I could look out the window?  Do I need to play Angry Birds while I wait for my friend at the coffee shop when I could be reading the newspaper?  I do not.

Use Google Docs offline
Wanna get real crazy?  Activate Google Docs offline and then go somewhere that doesn’t have wifi (I’m fairly sure these places still exist). And then work. In beautiful, uninterrupted internet silence.   Drink something yummy and revel in your amazing low-tech productivity.

Do you ever struggle with Internet Overwhelm?  How do you deal with it?

P.S. Did you know that when you sign up for my newsletter and send me your URL, I’ll give your site a once over and send you three, specific-to-you suggestions to make your online space more polished, trafficked, and money-making?

photo by kevin j, cc

A 2 Step Plan To A (Much) Better Business


For the last year I’ve been doing something really easy and basic that has made a huge difference in my business and blog.

And for a long time, I put it under the heading of “so obvious I don’t want to tell anybody about it because surely they’re already doing it.”  But you know what?  I’m going to err on the side of telling you something you already know.

So here’s what I do:

Every day I set my trusty Pomodoro timer for 20 minutes and engage in some ‘professional development.’

Maybe I clean up old sales pages or I read smart, helpful things (I love Copyblogger, Problogger, and Small Business Bonfire).  I listen to Blogcast FM.  I might read An Actual Book (!) or research the submission guidelines for a website I want to pitch.  Regardless, I don’t really have a chance to get bored because it’s just 20 minutes.

Then, I set my timer for another 20 minutes and spend that time talking to my readers and with people I think are awesome (those are frequently one and the same.)
I respond to comments on my blog, Twitter, and Facebook.  I leave comments on blogs and find content I want to promote.  I email people I admire and find companies I want to pitch.  And juuuuuust as I’m about to lose interest and search for the newest yelling goat video, the timer rings.

It seems sort of ridiculous but those 40 minutes a day?  They really, really add up.
And even if you just do 20 minutes, a few times a week?  I promise you’ll see difference.

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photo credit eflon, cc