The Great Web Bear
Blog Post #6
Falling Into A Facebook/YouTube Time Warp (Also known as one of the Trials of Working From Home)
By: Shando Darby – Senior Vice President & Marketing of Ursinet Hosting
There you are, in your home office, being productive, working hard and a friend sends you a link to check out this hilarious video on YouTube. Two hours later you find yourself looking at old Saturday Night Live clips or interviews of your favorite celebrity, or my current obsession: Randy Rainbow causing you to freak out thinking you didn’t get anything done that day! You have fallen into the YouTube Hole!
You get a notification from your Facebook of today’s birthdays. You proceed to wish each one of your friends “Happy Birthday” on their timeline and you even go into Facebook messenger to wish your friends who don’t allow posts on their timeline “Happy Birthday,” but then to the right-hand side you see a news item of interest, or you go to your main feed and there are puppies, political debates from friends, bad news, good news and random postings of food and vacations and…you just lost two hours of your day in a Facebook hole!
Working from home is so different from working with others at a downtown situation. At a company, they have rules of using the Internet for personal use. They may even go so far as to block certain sites on their servers so employees stay more productive. Of course people still tend to get around those rules, but at least you have someone looking over your shoulder and this would later reflect in a performance review down the road. When you work from home, you are your own boss and you set the rules of your own office. You don’t block sites on your home computer because you are an adult and no one can tell you what sites you can and cannot go to, right? But this comes with a price! You can go to Facebook, YouTube and other distracting sites anytime you want to. You don’t include in your personal review of yourself: “Spends too much time on the computer for personal reasons”. You aren’t going to fire yourself if you get caught on certain websites, but maybe you should do a personal check-in with yourself and monitor how often you spend on the computer personal versus for your business.
There are some people who can multitask and do both personal and work on the computer at the same time. My partner is one of those types. He can get more done and still be social on the computer than anyone I know, but if you are like me and are easily distracted, you need to separate your personal time and your business time. My brain works like this: “See this shiny thing over here? Go play with it or look at it for five hours!”
Example of a shiny thing
Photo Credit: Shandopics.com
It happens to the best of us in the “working from home” industry. Hopefully you don’t fall into these holes on a day when you need to meet a deadline!
Here are some two ways to avoid the Facebook AND YouTube TIME WARPS!
- Only have Facebook or YouTube open for a certain amount of time per day. I find the best time to check those two sites is in the morning while I’m waking up and sipping coffee. I get caught up on the news of the day both personal, political and worldwide. I get a dose of laughter and/or music from YouTube and move on with my day. You allow yourself a half hour, or maybe even an hour, if you wake up early enough, but you have to close it at the designated time. No and’s if’s or but’s! Stick to a time where those sites are closed on your browser.
- Turn off notifications of those sites on your computer AND your cell phone. As wonderful as it is to get notifications at various times of the day, you don’t want to respond to a post you made and divert your attention away from your work. Once again, set another designated time in the afternoon or early evening to catch up on Facebook notifications and such.
Now the tricky part comes when you use social media to promote your business! Once again, you have to discipline yourself that you will only go to the page where your business is located, post what you need to post and ignore that pesky notifications icon! You may not always succeed at this part, but with determination and discipline, it can be done!
Using social media for fun should be a treat to your day. A reward for doing a hard day’s work on your business. You can do this cause your business depends on YOU to be focused and disciplined or else you might find yourself in the Unemployment Time Warp!