6 Ways to Overcome Social Media Overload

We all know social media helps us stay connected to those near and far away. I can browse through wedding and baby albums and send my congratulations in seconds. In return, I can share my adventures with my Handsome and others can see what we are doing since he has been back from training. Staying connected is important and enriching our lives. What happens when you get social media overload and cannot keep up?

You know what I’m talking about…

Alerts on our smartphones, reminders sent to e-mail, notifications on Facebook, mentions on Twitter, and everything in between is hard to manage. I admire the journey Jason Surfrapp is going through. He took a 30-day social media detox. When you run an online marketing business like we do, taking a break from social means no money. I am sure logistically speaking he knew what he needed to do to cover the gap of time. For me, I follow these steps to disconnect to recharge myself and my work to prevent social media overload.

1.  Your time is valuable. Limit the amount of time you are on social media. I have found browsing during a set time frame gives you your fix and get off. Without set limits hours go by and life happens without you.

2.  Airplane mode. I spoke with an Australian business man who reminded me of this feature. Turn your devices to airplane mode to get peace from the outside world. He suggested to do this to get a good chunk of work done. I have done it when I go out for a walk in my neighborhood. It’s your turn to think of clever ways to use this feature.

3.  Do Not Disturb for iPhone. This feature turns off notifications and most calls (contacts not set as favorites).

4.  Uninstall / Reinstall. It is that simple. The app will still be there in the App Store to reinstall when you are ready for it.

5. The cell phone stacking game . Have you played? It is a simple and sure way to get the attention of those you are engaged with at a certain time. My family and friends play it when we go out to eat.

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6. Filters. I am one person. I run a business. My clients think they are my only client. On social media, I am managing anywhere from 2 to 7 accounts a day (on Twitter alone). Every social media platform has filters or customized settings to clear through the noise.

Twitter: use lists effectively

I unfollowed over 150 people and added him/her/company to an assigned list. I can only take in so much on my home feed. When I know to know something about health, I will look at my health/food list. When I need motivation, I will search the #HustleMuscle or quotes list to get it.

Facebook: to be-friend someone or not to-be friend someone — use categorizes

Again, I cannot keep up with over 500 Facebook friends at any given time. I have added categorizes of how we met. Did we meet during school, work, or church? Guess what? You have a filter on your account to help me keep up with your life. The home feed gives me a recap of everyone and sometimes it can be time consuming. “Liked” pages also have this setting with subscriptions. Use them for instant updates or go to them when you are ready to browse the pages interest.

Pinterest / Instagram are straight forward. Follow or unfollow.

 

If you LIKE my business page on Facebook, you will see a common thing happening on Fridays I call a “Friday Focus”. The topic varies by what you suggest or what comes to mind. My goal is to help YOU, the reader, to take away something valuable than you may not have considered before. If you want to contribute to an upcoming Friday Focus, please leave me a comment and we can make it happen. 

Creativity is Found “Outside The Fish Bowl”

As a marketer and creative person, my brain is split 50/50. I can think about numbers and strategy with a balanced creative outlet to make a plan come alive. Most of my marketing efforts are done online with today’s technology support. Truth be told, only half of my creativity is found online. ::gasp:: I love to browse on Pinterest and read articles, but when I am offline my creativity gains momentum.

When you work on similar projects over and over, how do you stay sharp? What sparks your creativity? My sister has always told me to, “Think outside the fish bowl“. And she is absolutely correct.

I have made it a healthy habit to eat lunch away from any technology or device. I try to communicate with those around me (if someone is there). And if not, I pick up a book or magazine and start reading. I try to stay off technology so I can recharge my brain. When I am flipping through a magazine, I try to find inspiration in whatever project I am working on. I read through a book and write down great quotes.

How do you nourish your creativity? What methods work best for you?

Source credit: Social Outlier |  Words: RT Consulting

9 ways to “Think Outside the Fish Bowl”

  1. Subscribe to different magazines to catch up on industry trends. The top of my list are Entrepreneur Magazine, Inc., Oprah, Health Magazine, and Jacksonville Magazine.
  2. Read an industry/business book on a regular basis. I have a habit of ready many book at the same time. I go back and forth. The books on my bookshelf are: Creativity for Sale by Jason SurfrApp, The Business Side of Creativity by Cameron S. Foote, and Start Your Own Business by Entrepreneur Press.
  3. Exercise. Seriously. The more I exercise the less tension I have in my body. I light weights and balance it out with cardio. I drink lots of water (after my morning blueberry juice and coffee) throughout the day to stay hydrated. My mind spins around all day with ideas and when I workout, it boosts something inside me to do it again another day.
  4. Meditation and pray. It has been said you have to work for a work/life balance. When you have a focus on what is important and what isn’t, life goes smoother. When you mediate on this and pray over it, life’s goals are within reach.
  5. Get off technology and network, mingle, and mean it. We are all behind a desk or pushing the deadline. A genuine connection offline can enhance who you are and your work performance. Try it.
  6. Watch a movie. What is your favorite movie of all time? If you had to stop and think about it, you need to disconnect more. Life is about sharing experiences with one another. A movie is a great way to use your imagination.
  7. Make a dream/vision board. I love how my mom and Nicole Sanchez live out their dreams. Both have shared with me the dreams they have for their life and show me. It comes in the form of a few magazine clippings, words, drawings, and crafy things in between to bring their dream to life.
  8. Get back with nature. I like to garden. I loathe doing yard work. When I am walking around in my backyard, I soak it all in. The humid air, sun shine, birds chirping, and my vegetable plants growing. Nature never ceases to amaze me as it is constantly evolving.
  9. Write your thoughts down. Thoughts are fleeting through our mind every day. When you write them down so you can go back to them and evolve them.

Big Success Comes From Smaller Victories

I came home from a two-week vacation and found each work day had a long list of priorities ahead of me. I found myself questioning why I went on vacation when all this work appeared impossible to catch up on. I questioned my motives.

Why was I even doing this? To pay next month’s bills? To live another day? The answers were circling my thought process. And then I set smaller goals:  Get through one more day. Survive the week.

Big Success Smaller Victories

Guess what? Each day got a little longer and easier than the day before.

I made a running to-do list. (There was about 50 things I wanted to accomplish.)

I prioritized them. (Business, personal, clients, etc.)

I made action dates to get them done. (What to do on Monday, Tuesday, next week, etc.)

And got to work. #HustleMuscle

When I had a handful of tasks checked off my to-do list, I celebrated by being spontaneous. I ended up getting 42 of the 50 items off my list with time to work in my garden, see Steve-O at the Comedy Zone with my mom, have dinner with my sister and nephew, have lunch with my dad, and catch up with a friend.

Mom and I @ Comedy ZoneWhat does this have to do with being spontaneous? When I started working for the small victories, a bigger success followed. Reward your effort on your own merit system. Find time to put your work aside and come back to it.

If you LIKE my business page on Facebook, you will see a common thing happening on Fridays I call a “Friday Focus”. The topic varies by what you suggest or what comes to mind. My goal is to help YOU, the reader, to take away something valuable than you may not have considered before. If you want to contribute to an upcoming Friday Focus, please leave me a comment and we can make it happen.

You Are Not Defined By Your Job

When our days run together, we exhaust ourselves and ruin the opportunity to relax. Today’s Friday Focus is a reminder to live in the moment. Our commitments to our jobs and other responsibilities take priority. This can run our days but it is the small windows of opportunities to embrace the moments we live for. … Continue reading

5 Steps to Achieve the Work/Life Balance You Want

Ask yourself this question:  Are you living the life you want to live? Why or what not?

The answer is always the same. No, because I don’t have enough free time. No, I have too many obligations now. No, I cannot go back and change things.

I am here to encourage you to change your thinking and start striving for balance. If you try to change everything all at once, you will feel overwhelmed and accomplish very little. Here are five steps to achieve the work/life balance you want in life.

1.  Set your priorities, I cannot stress this enough. When you set your priorities, it gives you a barrier between you and the chaos in life. When you know your priorities, you can easily see what is important in life and what isn’t.

2.  Buy a dry erase board. Visually see what areas in your life need your attention. I have my “to-do” things around the house, things I need to shop for, my agenda (work, client projects, church commitments, etc.), and the fun in my life. You can come up with your own lists you want to grow. Split the dry erase board to “fit” the areas you want to focus on.

Buy a Dry Erase Board

3.  One step at a time. Start small by trying to accomplish about three times at a time under each “area” of your life. If you go beyond three items it starts to feel like a chore and it will never get done. I like to run five times a week but the reality is I do not have the time do that. Instead, I schedule myself time to life weights, run, and play outdoor volleyball. My goal is stay in motion and I can accomplish that in more than one way.

4.  Before you start climbing this mountain of change, ask for help. I have a healthy habit in calling people and asking their advice or opinion on something. When I hear how someone has transformed his or her life, I get inspired. When I hear about the journey he or she has made before, I can map out my journey. Not everyone’s journey is the same, but a few stories of similar experiences can give you better insight going into your own.

5.  Reward yourself. After you accomplish a milestone, celebrate it! Make a BIG deal about it and enjoy the progress you have made. On my dry erase board, I can tackle projects, cleaning, and my tasks all week long. When it comes to exercising it is hard to motivate myself to stay with it. My reward system has been to work out and pay myself a dollar. There are apps to help motivate you by billing you if you miss a day for an enforced system but I trust myself. I call it my “No excuses, work out … No guilt, Shopping” money. I used my last $40 to pay for new garden supplies.

What steps have you taken to achieve more balance in your life?

If you LIKE my business page on Facebook, you will see a common thing happening on Fridays I call a “Friday Focus”. The topic varies by what you suggest or what comes to mind. My goal is to help YOU, the reader, to take away something valuable than you may not have considered before. If you want to contribute to an upcoming Friday Focus, please leave me a comment and we can make it happen.

Life Requires Balance

As I write this, I am thinking to myself I should be in bed. (Well, technically I am.) I broke one of my rules by having my iPad mini and iPhone in bed with me before going to sleep. This is a dangerous combination hence me writing about balance.

I broke my rule to get this running thought out of my head. We have heard it before, “All work and play is bad.” “Too much play doesn’t get the work done.” So how do we manage and live a life in balance?

You learn to let go of the hectic schedule. Let go of a rigid routine that keeps you in line. Grocery shop when you want to instead of when you have to. Run in the afternoon instead of the early, cold morning. Drink a glass of wine with dinner and skip the water. Eat frozen yogurt because it is there and don’t feel guilty about it later. Offer to cook for your mom instead of her offering to cook for you.

Life Requires Balance.jpg

Recently, my Handsome went to Parris Island, SC for USMC boot camp. Before I met him (two years ago), I had prayed for something different, something worth investing in. After our first date I knew in my heart that if I didn’t make time for him, then I would never make time for him. Two years later he has been my balance in life. I am not professing two years in a comparison to longer courtships or marriages, but to me it has been a two-year investment of fun, growth, and adventure on both our parts. I helped him along while he slowed me down.

91 Days minus 9 until he is projected to graduate. I knew what I was getting into when I agreed to meet him in St. Augustine for our first date. As I count down the days I am flooded with memories we have shared that bring me such happiness, and yes tears of joy. I am also encouraged to work on myself to be better for him while he is away. He is brave doing what he has sworn to do. I am going to face another day to embrace a better version of me.

Life requires balance because at the end of the day, you live the life you want to live. Make it a good one to inspire others to do the same.

Seven Steps to Write Out Your Priorities

If you read my last post, I had a meeting with my business coach, Mark, that got me thinking about my priorities. In the three years I have been a serious entrepreneur, I realized I haven’t update my priorities. Yikes! I had them tucked away in a mental file where I keep other things that get put off until tomorrow. Mark saw my frustration and encouraged me to take out a new sheet of paper. “Now, write your priorities…”

I was embarrassed! I had only written down three to four things. Instead of scolding me, (Mark does what he does best) he defined the word priority. A priority is a thing that is regarded as more important that the other. It has an action and a deadline. This could represent a current project, agenda, or goal with a time frame to get IT accomplished. “Now, rewrite your priorities…”

This time I could easily write down nine things. As our meeting continued, I asked how he balances his work and life priorities. Here’s the golden ticket: we set the priorities for the areas in our life that are important. This new-found wisdom had given me an idea. I should make a list (I love lists) of ALL my priorities so I can easily see what my expectations are in the different areas of my life.

7 Steps to Write Out Your Priorities:

1. You set your own priorities. Others may influence you, but ultimately it’s you and what you merit a priority.

2. Separate your life into different categories to write out and see where your priorities lie. This is also an indicator if you are bringing spread too thin.

3. Add an action and a deadline to each list. Be realistic. Try not to pile on too much at a time. A steady flow of progress is better than accomplishing too much too fast and losing steam.

4. Present a list you feel comfortable sharing with a coach, mentor, or superior. Ask: “Do we agree that these are the items to get done over the next X-time frame?” This holds you accountable and allows collaboration to see something you might have missed.

5. Use technology to guide your progress. Once I have a list written out, I plug each action item and deadline to a new category on my Reminders app. Reminders is FREE for Apple users. Or you can use Wunderlist or EasilyDo in a similar way.

6. Start today! The first step is the hardest.

7. Revisit the lists of categorizes at the beginning and ending of the month. How did you do? What got done and what didn’t? Revise once every three months.

How did you discover your priorities? How have they evolved with you?