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Don’t Let Social Media Control Your Body and Mind. It’s Killing Your Productivity.

Don’t Let Social Media Control Your Body and Mind. It’s Killing Your Productivity.

Nowadays, social media comes in a package with the internet connection. Whether you want it or not, everyone and everything is on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and many other similar sites. To feel part of your extended group of friends and to be able to tap into the life of the community, one needs to be a well-versed social media user.

We Scroll Endlessly – Social Media Has Stolen Our Time

Populated by cat videos, opinionated rants and unrequested and extremely detailed life stories, social media is by design a distraction. As such, it can be deeply damaging for your productivity – be it in school, at work or even within the family.

Reading, watching, liking, commenting and endlessly scrolling through entire albums of pictures takes valuable time out of your day. Minutes turn into hours and the same hours pass well into the night, taking out of your much-needed rest period. Moreover, as surfing social media causes you to take on an unusually heavy emotional burden, it also exhausts you psychologically. Soon enough your overall productivity level will plummet and your sense of accomplishment will be lost.

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Declutter Your Social Media Life to Enjoy Newfound Calm and Energy

The negative effects of social media are particularly obvious when you finally manage to break away from its grip[1] . An immediate improvement in the relationships with those around you will follow, not to mention a newfound calm and energy. You will discover that the day is longer that you used to know and that the outside world can be an even better source of fun and inspiration than your screen.

Giving up entirely on the benefits of the internet may be too extreme and even damaging to an individual at this point. Total separation and a reclusion into solitude is definitely not the answer. Balance can therefore be achieved once you have managed to successfully declutter your social media life by following a few steps.

Do These to Start Decluttering.

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Music Makes You Forget the Social Media

As a rule, it is advisable to stay clear of social media platforms during your work schedule. Instead, tuning into a playlist made especially for enhancing productivity can render higher levels of concentration and calm. There are several high quality online music platforms[2] that cater to that exact need, improving work environments all over the world.

Free Your Mind by Unfollowing the Irrelevant Content

Even during your free time, the need to declutter your social media life remains just as important. One of the first things to do is to familiarize yourself with the “unfollow” button. Go through the Friends and the Liked lists, unfollowing sources of content that are no longer relevant to you. If you can identify the cat video or motivational poster people, all the better. Your mental space is far too important to be occupied with irrelevant things.

Unfollowing may seem harsh to do to some people that are essentially well-intended, but the reality is that your own state of mind must come first. Ignorance of other people’s problems, life events, favorite movies or dinner plates might come as an actual bliss.

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Categorize to Organize

Even social media platforms themselves have realized the need to better organize the aforementioned lists and many others. As such, they have developed or allowed apps and plugins that can help you put your social media account in order.[3]

Twitter and Facebook, for example, allow the option of creating lists of people according to the type of relationship. Coworkers, close friends, family or acquaintances are thus separated on the scale of visibility, saving you the hassle of individually unfollowing every person. You should also leave or change the settings for any group that is no longer relevant to you. These can quickly overtake your newsfeed and keep you from seeing anything else. Even you download at playstore you get some instructions about the apps.[4]

You Manipulate Your Phone, Not the Other Way Round

Smartphones have made possible internet access without interruption. As a result, every minute that has to be spent waiting consists of scrolling through the same feeds. Turning off your phone notifications can be a great help in controlling yourself when it comes to mobile access to social media. It is also important to compare website builders[5] in order to make the right choice. The philosophy behind this is that you alone should dictate when to go online, not an automated alert.

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The same smartphones have been the cause of the flooding of social media with pictures. A good way to handle this is to organize your own photos[6] into albums as soon as you upload them. This way, you will never lose track of your memories.

Prohibit Useless Content From Filling Your Head by Revoking and Unsubscribing

Thankfully, social media-based games are not as popular as they used to be, sparing a multitude of people from rolling their eyes upon receiving a request from one. Revoking permissions for the apps and games you no longer use gets rid of a lot of useless content that fills your feed. Unsubscribing from newsletters and their endless promotional mails and offers can also further declutter your online life.

The reality is that we cannot fully separate real from online life anymore. In the modern world, they have become one, fused together through links that are at the core of who we are, who we know, what we like and what we do. Navigating a new environment can prove to be nerve-wrecking and exhausting for most of us. However, if organized and utilized with care, social media can be what it was always meant to be – something that brings people together.

Reference

More by this author

Saminu Abass

Content Writer and Blogger

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Last Updated on August 16, 2018

16 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People Revealed

16 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People Revealed

The same old motivational secrets don’t really motivate you after you’ve read them for the tenth time, do they?

How about a unique spin on things?

These 16 productivity secrets of successful people will make you reevaluate your approach to your home, work, and creative lives. Learn from these highly successful people, turn these little things they do into your daily habits and you’ll get closer to success.

1. Empty your mind.

It sounds counterproductive, doesn’t it?

Emptying your mind when you have so much to remember seems like you’re just begging to forget something. Instead, this gives you a clean slate so you’re not still thinking about last week’s tasks.

Clear your mind and then start thinking only about what you need to do immediately, and then today. Tasks that need to be accomplished later in the week can wait.

Here’s a guide to help you empty your mind and think sharper:

How to Declutter Your Mind to Sharpen Your Brain and Fall Asleep Faster

2. Keep certain days clear.

Some companies are scheduling “No Meeting Wednesdays,” which means, funnily enough, that no one can hold a meeting on a Wednesday. This gives workers a full day to work on their own tasks, without getting sidetracked by other duties or pointless meetings.

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This can work in your personal life too, for example if you need to restrict Facebook access or limit phone calls.

3. Prioritize your work.

Don’t think every task is created equal! Some tasks aren’t as important as others, or might take less time.

Try to sort your tasks every day and see what can be done quickly and efficiently. Get these out of the way so you have more free time and brain power to focus on what is more important.

Lifehack’s CEO has a unique way to prioritize works, take a look at it here:

How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

4. Chop up your time.

Many successful business leaders chop their time up into fifteen-minute intervals. This means they work on tasks for a quarter of an hour at a time, or schedule meetings for only fifteen minutes. It makes each hour seem four times as long, which leads to more productivity!

5. Have a thinking position.

Truman Capote claimed he couldn’t think unless he was laying down. Proust did this as well, while Stravinsky would stand on his head!

What works for others may not work for you. Try to find a spot and position that is perfect for you to brainstorm or come up with ideas.

6. Pick three to five things you must do that day.

To Do lists can get overwhelming very quickly. Instead of making a never-ending list of everything you can think of that needs to be done, make daily lists that include just three to five things.

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Make sure they’re things that need to be done that day, so you don’t keep putting them off.

7. Don’t try to do too much.

OK, so I just told you to work every day, and now I’m telling you to not do too much? It might sound like conflicting advice, but not doing too much means not biting off more than you can chew. Don’t say yes to every work project or social engagement and find yourself in way over your head.

8. Have a daily action plan.

Don’t limit yourself to a to-do list! Take ten minutes every morning to map out a daily action plan. It’s a place to not only write what needs to be done that day, but also to prioritize what will bring the biggest reward, what will take the longest, and what goals will be accomplished.

Leave room for a “brain dump,” where you can scribble down anything else that’s on your mind.

9. Do your most dreaded project first.

Getting your most dreaded task over with first means you’ll have the rest of the day free for anything and everything else. This also means that you won’t be constantly putting off the worst of your projects, making it even harder to start on it later.

10. Follow the “Two-Minute Rule.”

The “Two-Minute Rule” was made famous by David Allen. It’s simple – if a new task comes in and it can be done in two minutes or less, do it right then. Putting it off just adds to your to-do list and will make the task seem more monumental later.

11. Have a place devoted to work.

If you work in an office, it’s no problem to say that your cubicle desk is where you work every day.

But if you work from home, make sure you have a certain area specifically for work. You don’t want files spread out all over the dinner table, and you don’t want to feel like you’re not working just because you’re relaxing on the couch.

Agatha Christie never wrote at her desk, she wrote wherever she could sit down. Ernest Hemingway wrote standing up. Thomas Wolfe, at 6’6″ tall, used the top of his refrigerator as a desk. Richard Wright wrote on a park bench, rain or shine.

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Have a space where, when you go there, you know you’re going to work. Maybe it’s a cafe downstairs, the library, or a meeting room. Whenever and wherever works for you, do your works there.

12. Find your golden hour.

You don’t have to stick to a “typical” 9–5 schedule!

Novelist Anne Rice slept during the day and wrote at night to avoid distractions. Writer Jerzy Kosinski slept eight hours a day, but never all at once. He’d wake in the morning, work, sleep four hours in the afternoon, then work more that evening.

Your golden hour is the time when you’re at your peak. You’re alert, ready to be productive, and intent on crossing things off your to-do list.

Once you find your best time, protect it with all your might. Make sure you’re always free to do your best uninterrupted work at this time.

13. Pretend you’re on an airplane.

It might not be possible to lock everyone out of your office to get some peace and quiet, but you can eliminate some distractions.

By pretending you’re on an airplane, you can act like your internet access is limited, you’re not able to get something from your bookcase, and you can’t make countless phone calls.

Eliminating these distractions will help you focus on your most important tasks and get them done without interruption.

14. Never stop.

Writers Anthony Trollope and Henry James started writing their next books as soon as they finished their current work in progress.

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Stephen King writes every day of the year, and holds himself accountable for 2,000 words a day! Mark Twain wrote every day, and then read his day’s work aloud to his family to get their feedback.

There’s something to be said about working nonstop, and putting out continuous work instead of taking a break. It’s just a momentum that will push you go further./

15. Be in tune with your body.

Your mind and body will get tired of a task after ninety minutes to two hours focused on it. Keep this in mind as you assign projects to yourself throughout the day, and take breaks to ensure that you won’t get burned out.

16. Try different methods.

Vladimir Nabokov wrote the first drafts of his novels on index cards. This made it easy to rearrange sentences, paragraphs, and chapters by shuffling the cards around.

It does sound easier, and more fun, than copying and pasting in Word! Once Nabokov liked the arrangement, his wife typed them into a single manuscript.

Same for you, don’t give up and think that it’s impossible for you to be productive when one method fails. Try different methods until you find what works perfectly for you.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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