Working online is both a blessing and a curse. I love that I get to engage and connect with people online. The problem with being online and running a business (and its social networks) are the time-sucking rabbit holes that are everywhere.
A simple click in the wrong direction and productivity suffers.
But what can you do when your company is managed online and through your iPad/iPhone, etc?
Start with these suggestions and see if your output increases.
Note: These suggestions are for those who work and manage their business online and want to improve their productivity.
Delete all games from your iPad/iPhone and Facebook.
If you use your tablet/smartphone/Facebook for business, and you play any game more than once a day for more than 20 minutes, get rid of it. I say this fully understanding the online game culture. I kicked Castleville to the curb on Facebook and didn’t look back. Just recently, I downloaded Hay Day to my iPad to play along with my daughter and slowly the time commitment crept back up. It had to go. These games slowly become a huge time suck without you even realizing it.
Delete Unnecessary Apps from your smartphone or tablet.
Much like the games, they can waste your time, but even more importantly, unused apps just crowd your space. I speak first hand about this as well. At one point, I had 130 apps on my iPhone. I am slowly going through them and deleting the ones that I haven’t used in an effort to make my iPad a place of concentrated productivity.
Between these apps, and the game apps above, I kept only one extra-curricular app. I am trying to teach myself German and I’ve been doing some app quizzes to test my knowledge. The difference here being that when I am done ‘playing’ with this app, I will learn the basics of a new language (thus real-life goal achieved).
Only Open Three to Four Tabs in Your Browser at Once.
You can have more if you need them for what you are currently working on, but if it is a simple blog post, three is plenty. I usually have one for my email (to reference my requirements for sponsored posts), one for the post I am writing, and one for everything else (thesaurus, spell check, fact check, company info, social networks, image purchase, etc).
If you have anything open that you need later in the day or want to read later, create a Bookmark folder and stick it in there, then close the tab. You can remove the bookmark when you no longer need the page.
An alternative to bookmarking is just emailing yourself the link to read at the end of your day.
Watch Out for Facebook and Other Social Time Sucks
Has this happened to you?
Facebook is a portal to procrastination and you need to be prepared before logging on if you are on your work time. Write down your mission, then get in, complete your task, and get out. Put your blinders on and resist the urge to look around and if you do get the urge to stick around and read something, email yourself the link, or bookmark it.
We begin looking around out of fear that we are missing out (FOMO) on something. If this is true for you, then set times during the day that you will spend looking at Facebook outside of your scheduled work times.
Turn Off Your Phone When You Work
Set aside your work time as ‘busy’ and focus on the task at hand. Either put your phone on silent (no vibrating) and face down, or completely turn it off. Receiving notifications of tweet mentions, emails, and friend requests is counter-productive and you can catch up on those after you have completed your work.
Create a Work Calendar and Stick to It
If you run a business online, some of what you do will repeat itself on a daily or weekly basis. Creating a reminder calendar is a great way to stay on track and make sure that you are getting your required activities done so there are no surprises when you are trying to meet a business deadline. Write out the tasks you always need to do, then fit them into your calendar. This way, you will have a visual reminder of what you need to do and your ongoing tasks won’t pile up unexpectedly.