4 Ways I’ve Changed My Online Habits (spoiler: less social media)

In the past, my daily activity has always been very… scattered. I honestly wasn’t getting that much work done and spent way too much time flipping between Twitter and Facebook. Here’s how things have changed in the last few months:

1) No more browsing Twitter during the day

Previously I was on Twitter all day—constantly checking in, even if just for a few seconds. Maybe because I was less focused with my tasks for the day so popping in constantly felt like no big deal.

Now, I check Twitter in the morning, and in the evening, but that’s usually it. No more constant browsing all throughout the day.

And, honestly, I’m pretty sure I don’t miss much. Most of the people I follow are in the United States so I don’t start to see my feed truly bustling until the evening UK time anyway.

2) I’ve been leaving and unfollowing Facebook groups

I used to be active in a bunch of Facebook groups. Just like with my Twitter habits, I was constantly refreshing Facebook to check new posts, answer any questions I could, and report posts that broke the rules.

But I recently started to realize how sick I was getting of Facebook groups.

  • Mostly in large groups, a huuuge portion of posts broke the rules. Half my time was spent reporting rule-breaking posts, which probably helped out the admins, but was zero fun for me. It was starting to feel like a full time job just reporting the promotional messes.
  • If you’re in a group long enough and with enough people, it starts to feel like the same old stuff over and over again. The exact same questions get asked and then given the exact same answers.

I used to love Facebook groups but they started becoming more annoying to me than enjoyable. Plus I think I felt this way because I was usually the one offering advice rather than asking for it, and although I love helping people, it can start to become a bit of a drain.

I bit the bullet and unfollowed a few groups and left a few groups. The ones I unfollowed were kind of a test drive to see what leaving the group might be like. Turns out, I didn’t miss it. At all. It removed tons of posts from my feed and I no longer have the urge to check Facebook 24/7 for new posts to read.

I’m still actively following a few groups, but I’m extremely selective about which ones.

3) I’ve been unsubscribing from tons of lists/people

When running my business was my main source of income, it felt important to subscribe to a bunch of business-y lists, and follow business-y people… I guess to feel involved in the community, see what other folks were doing, and feel “in the know” with running a business—whatever that means.

Now that I have a full time job, all those subscriptions feel so much less important. I’m no longer really the target audience for “running a business tips” or subscribing to a website giving away free graphics that I might want to use in a project.

I also unfollowed a lot of business folks on Twitter who post about business tips, marketing tips, and so on. It’s kind of a huge relief to be free of all those posts. (Note: they’re absolutely still valuable for some people who are starting a business, I’m just no longer one of those and it’s nice to return to a more hobby-focused Twitter feed.)

4) I’ve achieved inbox zero

For the longest time my inbox was always fully read and under control. But somewhere in the last few years, that changed. The number of average unreads slowly crept up and had been settling around 25-40 on any given day. Now, a big chunk of those were left unread as a reminder for me to do something, but still!

Thanks to unsubscribing from a ton of lists, reducing the work inquiries I get, and just generally having fewer business-y things to do, I’m officially almost at inbox zero all the time. Or if not, I’m usually at 1-2 unreads. It’s an AMAZING feeling!

What are your online habits like? How much time do you spend on social media each day?

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I'm a 30-something California girl living in England (I fell in love with a Brit!). My three great passions are: books, coding, and fitness. more »

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  1. This is pretty much me. I go on Twitter maybe a couple times a week, maybe after someone tweets me. I def don’t miss it. I’m also starting to get that same feeling about FB groups. I’m def getting tired of the same questions and stuff being posted. It just doesn’t seem to benefit me much anymore. I completely agree with this and am def not loving social media the way that I used to. Probably my only vice is Instagram, and even that has its days where I just wanna give it up.

  2. I would love to achieve Inbox Zero – I still need to unsubscribe from some newsletters, blog updates, etc. I’ve left and/or unfollowed the vast majority of groups on Facebook, and I’ve not been checking Twitter constantly. Snapchat and Instagram went to being checked regularly, to not being checked at all…though I do confess that this may be due to the fact that my phone’s not currently working. :p I’m currently in the process of redoing/revamping my blog – so I’ll end up redoing all my social media as well. :/

    1. Inbox zero felt amazing when I got there for the first time in years. It’s such a great feeling!

    1. Yeah, same here! I also gravitate towards it when I’m bored, but then usually there’s not much going on anyway. I’m just looking at it for the sake of looking at it.. hah.

  3. I’m rarely on social media. When I get on, I get sucked into it for hours and get absolutely nothing done. I check Twitter once, maybe twice a day. If even that. I just unfollowed a ton of groups on FB, and get on Instagram maybe 3 times a week.
    I feel a lot better with not being on social media nonstop.

    1. Leaving/unfollowing Facebook groups was huge for me. I didn’t realize how much they were weighing me down until I cut them out. Then it was a huge weight off my shoulders.

  4. Pretty much the same here: very rarely go on Twitter or just to reply to someone or thank someone who rt me. I also reduced the number of feeds I follow in Feedly and it makes it much more manageable to actually properly read the full articles and share the good ones!
    Starting to have the same feeling about Facebook groups and I may close the one that I run myself.
    Oh and congrats on the full time job!

    1. Ohh I’ve been pruning my Feedly feeds too! I’m really trying to make sure I’m only following things I really want to read on a regular basis. Otherwise it just gets too overwhelming.

      And thank you! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. I, unfortunately, don’t really have a method to my madness when it comes to my social media yet. lol! I know that’s really bad, but I’ve been slacking a bit. Normally I schedule my tweets for the week on Sundays and then I check in here and there throughout the day. I don’t do much of anything with my Facebook page other than share my posts, same with Google +. I’m much more active on Instagram. I don’t post every day but I’m always on there checking things out. lol I’m a visual person I guess. I’m on there way too much throughout the day.

  6. I still scroll twitter too often but starting a new job has cut down on that somewhat. I’m definitely learning to limit my intake and to keep my feed and my tweets what I want them to be. My email is out of control and I don’t think that will ever change lol. I really need to unsubscribe from so many lists. And I think having a good search function for when I really need something has helped and hindered in some regard.

    Morgan @ The Bookish Beagle recently posted: Top Ten Tuesday: Fandoms Iโ€™m In
    1. Starting a new job was what changed my Twitter habits too. I’m a lot more focused during the day now, rather than all scatter-brain like how I was before.

  7. I’m trying to be less active on social media -it’s hard, because as a book blogger Twitter is where most of the action is at, but on the other hand, a lot of it is just stuff I’m not interested in seeing, authors spamming my feed (which is an automatic unfollow), or it all gets a bit political (which I don’t mind – I just don’t want to see it, if that makes sense?). People can tweet whatever the heck they want, but once it gets to a certain time my feed is generally filled with a lot of Trump stuff, which is absolutely vital to those tweeting it, but not really to me? So I kind of stay away. It’s not that I liked Twitter better when it was all fluffy and books, but it was less stressful that way, but that’s life, I suppose.

    It’s the only social media I’m really active on, actually. I tried Instagram, tried and tried and tried and tried but it’s exhausting for not a lot of reward. And I have nothing of interest to say on Facebook, I spend time on there, looking at memes mostly, but that’s about it.

    I like to try and stay off my phone or laptop when reading so I can concentrate on the book and not what’s going on on the Internet, but there’s definitely a FOMO. But it also makes me hella sleepy, staring at the blue screens!

    Leah @ Girl vs Books recently posted: Book Review // Get It Together, Delilah! by Erin Gough
  8. I really need to go through all my social media and weed things out to make my life more manageable and make sure I am not missing what I want to see.

  9. I have never gotten the hang of Twitter, sad I know, so I don’t usually visit there unless I get a notification or something. I have a TON of FB groups, but I’m not active in many. I need to do the pruning and only keep the ones I’m interested in. It’s like once I get onto one platform, I get sucked into that one and am there all day. SM definitely gets in the way of my already full life, that’s for sure. I think even if I just cut back friend lists and groups, it might be more manageable.

    Tanya @ Rantings of a Reading Addict recently posted: Review ~ Nice Guys Bite by Jennifer Estep @Jennifer_Estep
  10. After reading this, I went on an unsubscribe spree. I unsubscribed from all the lists I never read, retaining only those which I read. As a result, hardly any new mails except the ones I need to respond to. I have also removed the notification features on my cell phone. Now.. to those Facebook groups.

  11. Ah, yes. I am slowly learning these things myself. I made a realization earlier today that the entire reason our Christmas cards did not go out was I was too focused on my blog and staying up to date on Facebook. Now on to fixing that so it doesn’t happen again. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I really like the idea of unsubscribing to newsletters and ads that do not contribute to me personally or to my business. Also more management of Facebook notifications.

    Thank you for sharing these tips.

    Xyra recently posted: Meatloaf's Rail Adventures #3
  12. My goal this year is to use social media MORE for promotion of my blog but less as a way of passing/wasting time. Essentially, I’m trying to accomplish as much as possible online in as little time as possible. I’m not at inbox zero right now, but I at least try to clean out the junk mail and reply to time sensitive messages every day so things don’t build up too much. Last year I experimented with turning off the wifi every weekend (as in NO Internet all weekend) and it was amazing. I was surprised at how much my stress levels lowered. I’d like to try that again this summer.

  13. I did the same thing back in January-ish time too. I came off social media completely and also deleted the apps from my phone too. After about a week it was easy to continue. I just don’t see the point anymore. There was nothing good to come of it and it was just a waste of time. More and more people seem to be doing the same thing too. I wrote a post about it on my blog called Leaving Social Media if you fancy a read of the article.

  14. Very inspiring. I just left a few goodreads groups that I never post in. And Facebook I unfollowed a bunch, so my feed isn’t as messy. But I’ve increased my Twitter usage. That will change once my maternity leave is over though because I’ll be back to work.

    With baby, I spend ton of time on my phone using social media while she naps on me or beside me. But I know once she’s bigger and I’m at work my presence will go back to AM and PM only.

    Great tips!

  15. I am guilty of checking my twitter again and again throughout the day. The few seconds adds up to a lot and also it breaks the flow of concentration. I need to do as you do, check morning and/or evening, and that’s it.

    I am ok with facebook, never participated much in groups.

    My email inbox has like 34k worth of emails. Most of it junk. I have been unsubscribing, but I should unsubscribe more. Most of them are promotional emails, and some I don’t even know how they got my email. Even if it takes me a day or two, I should get this handled.

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