March 20, 2018
The problem with being a studying Mum means that you are often working from home and that means having to resist all the temptations that home offers. There are dishes to be done, washing to put out, meals to prepare, cups of tea to be drunk....
However, the biggest threat to productivity has to be social media. As those of you who have been following this blog know, I have a love-hate relationship with Facebook and technology in general. I can absolutely see the value in it - for example, the connections that have formed between Mums on the closed Facebook group, and the support they offer each other, has been just fantastic. The amount of time I have spent looking at ridiculous videos of men trying to dive into frozen swimming pools and the like has not been fantastic to say the least. The worst part is not realising how much time is actually 'wasted' on Facebook. Let me be clear here, I am not talking about the valuable sharing and informing that can be part of looking on FB I am talking about the mundane checking that has become somewhat of a habit. So, I am going on a digital detox. I have written the 'manifesto' for it and stuck it on the fridge. This is what I am doing:
Set times to check emails and search the internet. If I have any ideas or things I want to search for I plan to write them down and then, if they are still relevant during my allocated 'net time,' I can spend time googling them only during that time period.
I am going on a Facebook break for 30 days. I will still keep my eye on the closed group via my wonderful Admins but for now, I am just going to keep away while I focus on some important deadlines I have coming up. I am also interested in what impact this will have on my mental state...I get many of my to-do items from things that come up on my FB feed. For example, I was at one stage tempted to make dolphins out of bananas for the kids' lunchboxes. I know, utterly ridiculous, right? If I hadn't seen that on FB I would never have seen the similarity between the bend of a banana and the spine of a dolphin.
Unsubscribe from newsletters. I have bought so much junk just because I opened an email letting me know about certain products or sales. In the past, if I needed something I would go to the shops to buy it. It was me deciding what I wanted. Often I feel like it's not actually me making the decision but rather what information I get given: sale on xyz, suddenly I remember I need more xyz. Of course, I have a choice whether to get sucked in, however more often than not even if I don't buy anything I waste time looking at the website or the catalogues. This is time I could spend elsewhere.
Emailing when I should call. I often email or text because it's quick and easy to do especially when the kids are making a racket and speaking/hearing on the phone is difficult. However, often it would be so much quicker and simpler to talk rather than start an email or text chain. If you really examine your texts, look at how many words (and how much effort) is used to find out quite small bits of information.
So, this is where I am starting. I am not sure how it will go or whether I will have any noticeable improvements but I am looking forward to giving it a try. If I can stick to my allocated time-slots I am expected a big boost in productivity and headspace.