June 11, 2014
Doing Facebook Differently | Finding Personal Social Media Boundaries
I, like so many others, struggle with the balance of social media in my life. I spend more time than I would like on it and I often walk away feeling discouraged. But I have never quite felt the pull to completely walk away because there are a lot of good things that can come from social media and I want to stay connected. Just not everyday, multiple times a day.
Setting up interest lists on Facebook has been on the back of my mind for a few weeks now. But after I read The Nester's post about prioritizing life that allows to be less distracted and more creative, it was time to set some social media boundaries. Her post is a great read for creatives who need space to be creative without distractions.
It was time that Facebook needed to be organized and efficient. So I finally tackled those interest lists.
Interest lists can be used to set up a list or group of people or pages you want to follow. I consider them a lot like my blog feed. I can organize them by category and importance. Currently I have set up two lists, one for "My Friends" (real life friends I want to keep up with and see on a regular basis) and "Blogs" (blogs I want to follow for their additional FB content because I am obsessed with them or blogs I only click through if a post catches my eye on a regular basis but are not high enough in importance to make the blog feed reader cut).
What I found most interesting was that I picked 37 blogs to follow and 14 friends to follow. That means I only want to follow along with 51 friends or pages. All the while I have over 600 friends and countless pages to follow. No wonder I felt like my time was being wasted.
It would be easy to unfriend and unfollow a whole bunch of people. But I don't want to. I want to be able to catch up with my friends from college and see the engagement or baby announcement. I just don't need to see it daily. Having these interest lists keeps my daily browsing at a minimum as well as helps me stay connected with the people that are important in my life (I can be a terrible friend who hides in her home all day so having my friend's life happenings better organized helps me be better aware of what is going on).
As for other social media, I have let go of seeing every Instagram photo since the last time I logged on. I also am going to try to check my email only twice a day. Besides Instagram, I try to keep all of my social media interaction for sitting in front of the computer instead of on my phone which has also helped me keep my phone battery charged longer! It is a constant battle for me to find that balance when it comes to social media and the internet. But by taking advantage of these few available tools to keep my online time both organized and prioritized, I can take back my day to day and walk away feeling good about how I connect through social media.