One of the things I’ve been thinking about a lot lately is how much time I spend online. Obviously, I work online, so I’m connected for 9+ hours everyday. Working online means that at any given time I usually have Gmail, WordPress, Facebook, Twitter and Skype open. But then I also have my own blog and social profiles to maintain, so in a good chunk of my spare time you’ll also see that I have Gmail, WordPress, Facebook, Twitter and Skype open.
And then there are the apps. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a little obsessed with Instagram. But then I’ll have these aha! moments with friends where I wonder why the heck I think it’s so important to take a picture and post it immediately versus take in the moment and enjoy it. (Like the time that four girls went to Prima Strada for pizza, each took a picture of the food, posted it on Instagram and got called out by the restaurant staff for showing the same table from all four corners. Oops.) It’s in those moments that I wonder if I’m a little too connected and if I should be spending more time looking up at life than down at my phone.
I keep reading about the idea of “unplugging” from the online world. Fast Company recently put one man’s story of going offline for 25 days on the front cover of their summer issue, while many other people have simply written a post or two about how they cut back. As I read each story, I found myself fantasizing about going offline for a while. But I know that I don’t actually want to do that. I just want to find a better way to make social media work for me; to have it feed me the information I care most about, teach me things I want to learn, and surround me with friends, experts and creative minds. Basically, I need to do some filtering.
So, I’ve decided that rather than having a profile on every site possible, I want to become a better user on only a few sites. That means the profiles I keep will be updated with fewer, more thoughtful posts versus sporadic attempts at posting on all platforms. Want to see which sites I’m staying on and which ones I’m ditching? It’s probably obvious by now, but take a look.
Social Media Sites I Use:
- Facebook – I moved across the country twice in one year and travel a lot. Gotta keep in touch.
- Twitter – I’ve landed dream jobs and made so many new friends, because of this site.
- Instagram – It’s just fun. And, actually, I’ve made friends on this app too!
Social Media Sites I Don’t Use:
- Foursquare / Path – Who has the time to check-in everywhere they go? Not me. (Plus, it’s creepy.)
- LinkedIn – In my experience, LinkedIn is totally useless. Besides that, I’m not looking.
- MySpace – Obviously not.
- Pinterest – Biggest waste of time ever. (I know because I wasted many hours of my life there.)
- Vine – I wanted to like Vine… I really did. But now Instagram has video. So, nope.
- Any review sites – Goodreads, Urbanspoon, Yelp, all that stuff… again, I just don’t have the time for it.
Now, not using these sites doesn’t mean that I spend any less time online than the next person; it simply means that I’m picking and choosing where I want to spend my time, often depending on the information I’m looking for. I’m still on my laptop and phone for what seems like all day, everyday… but what I’m doing is a little more meaningful. At least, I hope it will be.
Which social media sites do you use? And are there any you used to use but now don’t? Why?