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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

Don’t Let Social Media Control Your Body and Mind. It’s Killing Your Productivity. To Live a Much More Fulfilling Life, Aim at Self Actualization What Is A Serial Dater And Why Can’t They Stand Loneliness? Will Your Own Business Be a Huge Success? These 8 Predictors Can Tell the Answer Don’t Be Fooled by Social Media. Most People Feel Lonely Too.

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

The Power of Ritual: Conquer Procrastination, Time Wasters and Laziness

The Power of Ritual: Conquer Procrastination, Time Wasters and Laziness

Life is wasted in the in-between times. The time between when your alarm first rings and when you finally decide to get out of bed. The time between when you sit at your desk and when productive work begins. The time between making a decision and doing something about it.

Slowly, your day is whittled away from all the unused in-between moments. Eventually, time wasters, laziness, and procrastination get the better of you.

The solution to reclaim these lost middle moments is by creating rituals. Every culture on earth uses rituals to transfer information and encode behaviors that are deemed important. Personal rituals can help you build a better pattern for handling everything from how you wake up to how you work.

Unfortunately, when most people see rituals, they see pointless superstitions. Indeed, many rituals are based on a primitive understanding of the world. But by building personal rituals, you get to encode the behaviors you feel are important and cut out the wasted middle moments.

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Program Your Own Algorithms

Another way of viewing rituals is by seeing them as computer algorithms. An algorithm is a set of instructions that is repeated to get a result.

Some algorithms are highly efficient, sorting or searching millions of pieces of data in a few seconds. Other algorithms are bulky and awkward, taking hours to do the same task.

By forming rituals, you are building algorithms for your behavior. Take the delayed and painful pattern of waking up, debating whether to sleep in for another two minutes, hitting the snooze button, repeat until almost late for work. This could be reprogrammed to get out of bed immediately, without debating your decision.

How to Form a Ritual

I’ve set up personal rituals for myself for handling e-mail, waking up each morning, writing articles, and reading books. Far from making me inflexible, these rituals give me a useful default pattern that works best 99% of the time. Whenever my current ritual won’t work, I’m always free to stop using it.

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Forming a ritual isn’t too difficult, and the same principles for changing habits apply:

  1. Write out your sequence of behavior. I suggest starting with a simple ritual of only 3-4 steps maximum. Wait until you’ve established a ritual before you try to add new steps.
  2. Commit to following your ritual for thirty days. This step will take the idea and condition it into your nervous system as a habit.
  3. Define a clear trigger. When does your ritual start? A ritual to wake up is easy—the sound of your alarm clock will work. As for what triggers you to go to the gym, read a book or answer e-mail—you’ll have to decide.
  4. Tweak the Pattern. Your algorithm probably won’t be perfectly efficient the first time. Making a few tweaks after the first 30-day trial can make your ritual more useful.

Ways to Use a Ritual

Based on the above ideas, here are some ways you could implement your own rituals:

1. Waking Up

Set up a morning ritual for when you wake up and the next few things you do immediately afterward. To combat the grogginess after immediately waking up, my solution is to do a few pushups right after getting out of bed. After that, I sneak in ninety minutes of reading before getting ready for morning classes.

2. Web Usage

How often do you answer e-mail, look at Google Reader, or check Facebook each day? I found by taking all my daily internet needs and compressing them into one, highly-efficient ritual, I was able to cut off 75% of my web time without losing any communication.

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3. Reading

How much time do you get to read books? If your library isn’t as large as you’d like, you might want to consider the rituals you use for reading. Programming a few steps to trigger yourself to read instead of watching television or during a break in your day can chew through dozens of books each year.

4. Friendliness

Rituals can also help with communication. Set up a ritual of starting a conversation when you have opportunities to meet people.

5. Working

One of the hardest barriers when overcoming procrastination is building up a concentrated flow. Building those steps into a ritual can allow you to quickly start working or continue working after an interruption.

6. Going to the gym

If exercising is a struggle, encoding a ritual can remove a lot of the difficulty. Set up a quick ritual for going to exercise right after work or when you wake up.

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7. Exercise

Even within your workouts, you can have rituals. Spacing the time between runs or reps with a certain number of breaths can remove the guesswork. Forming a ritual of doing certain exercises in a particular order can save time.

8. Sleeping

Form a calming ritual in the last 30-60 minutes of your day before you go to bed. This will help slow yourself down and make falling asleep much easier. Especially if you plan to get up full of energy in the morning, it will help if you remove insomnia.

8. Weekly Reviews

The weekly review is a big part of the GTD system. By making a simple ritual checklist for my weekly review, I can get the most out of this exercise in less time. Originally, I did holistic reviews where I wrote my thoughts on the week and progress as a whole. Now, I narrow my focus toward specific plans, ideas, and measurements.

Final Thoughts

We all want to be productive. But time wasters, procrastination, and laziness sometimes get the better of us. If you’re facing such difficulties, don’t be afraid to make use of these rituals to help you conquer them.

More Tips to Conquer Time Wasters and Procrastination

 

Featured photo credit: RODOLFO BARRETO via unsplash.com

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