Discipline is very important to me. I’ve been raised to believe that if you are going to pursue your goals in life – you better stay focused and damn well give it your all. Thanks Mom and Dad.
That being said, I am making it my mission to update Hype Creations EVERY week – and I know it’s Friday and that I’m cutting it close – but here we go!
While I was throwing around topic ideas for what I wanted to cover– a couple I had even begun to construct outlines for – I decided I wanted to change things up a bit and talk about something far more relevant. More personal.
Instead of posting my typical commentaries – social media, web trends, viral cat videos – I wanted to take a minute and talk about my most recent tool for online success.
Stepping away from my computer.
Not to be confused with stepping ON my computer. Although there have been days when I’ve considered it.
Yes – I admit – ever since I began working in online media I have been sacrificing more and more of my life to my desktop monitor and smartphone. By this point my eyes are like little pools of Jello…grape flavored Jello. The worst kind.
Pictured: My nightmare.
I did not take long to see how quickly this began to impede my social life and physical/emotional well-being. Here I am, talking about how awesome the Internet is (and believe me – it’s REALLY cool!) while it is this same merciless dedication to working day-in and day-out online that I found seemingly poisoning my body.
While I prided myself in my ability to enhance the social presence of organizations and brands – I was, ironically enough, removing myself from the ones I truly loved most. I was speaking less with my friends and family – not via Facebook posts and text messages, mind you – I mean REALLY conversing with them. And on top of that this isolation began to affect my work as well. I was getting sloppy. I wasn’t having fun.
So I’ve recently taken it upon myself to put an end to this. And in doing so I now present to you my 5 pillars to maintaining a stable OFFline presence.
And for all you social media managers and Internet nerds out there. If you find you’ve having a tough time “keeping it together,” maybe you should consider something like:
1) Maintaining a Healthy Diet
I’m not going to sit here and say that you have to eat nothing but sprouts, quinoa, and kale in order to be productive. But you do have to eat – and preferably it’s not something with the words “processed,” “E-Z,” or “Double Down” in the title.
Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner of champions.
Use your meal times to keep your mind fresh and free from the pressures of your tasks at hand. A clear mind and a comfortable stomach are better than a can of Red Bull any day.
2) Setting Aside “Sacred Hours”
Facebook’s COO Sheryl Sandberg was recently in the news for publicly announcing that she leaves her office every day at 5:30PM so that she can be home on time to be with her husband and kids.
This time is sacred to her. And even if you do not have a family to come home to every night – I have found it is extremely helpful to set aside an allotted time every day where I promise to keep away from the phone and desktop.
For me that time is 7-10PM. I promise myself that during this window I will only focus on three things: making a delicious dinner, enjoying that dinner, and talking to my wonderful girlfriend in Los Angeles.
P.S. She is moving up to San Francisco in August and I couldn’t be happier! When we move in together, maintaining these “Sacred Hours” will only be even more important.
3) Not Taking Your Social Media “Standing” to Heart
This one really only applies to the social media managers. For those of you that aren’t aware, there are tools available online that help gauge your activity across various social media platforms. The most popular examples are sites like Klout and Empire Avenue.
Are you obnoxiously active across many social platforms? Then you probably will receive high scores on these sites. And most likely you already know this, and have taken it upon yourself to rub those scores in at least a dozen different faces by lunch time. (That is if you even EAT lunch! – See Point #1)
Only problem is, like any stock price, there are ups and downs as time goes on. And trust me, your social media score will go down. But don’t let it get to you.
I understand this must sound unreasonably silly to a lot of you. But trust me – I know plenty of people that are active on social media every. single. day. if for no other reason than to not risk tarnishing their “standing.” If you know someone like this. Please, intervene now.
4) Enjoying the Weekends and Holidays
Sunday is Mother’s Day. I’m spending the day with my mom. I’m not going to tweet about it, I’m not going to +1 it – I’m going to enjoy it. This whole DAY is sacred.
5) Building New OFFline Connections
This week I attended a great workshop put on by the Burning Man Project called Facebook & Blogging for Creative Types. Thank you to Afattshionista for leading the discussions and helping put everything together. It’s been almost two months since I started Hype Creations and I am still trying to get accostomed to this whole blogging thing – so all the help I could get was greatly appreciated.
I would love to write about everything I learned from this workshop – perhaps in a future post – and I will DEFINITELY be writing about my involvement with the Burning Man community in posts to come. But I will end this particular blog by saying that what I learned the most from this workshop, a workshop on online media mind you, is that there really is no denying the momentous importance of offline face-to-face communication with your peers in order to make any substantial change occur in this world.
I’m pretty sure the Burning Man community does not care about their Klout score…
Don’t get me wrong – building a solid online presence for any organization is going to be critical in getting your mission recognized, appreciated, and assembled. But it is important to remember that real hype isn’t created with just 0’s and 1’s – it’s created with people and teams.
Embrace those teams before you embrace those screens! (OK, that was super cheesy, but you get the idea…)
Anyway– I hope this helps. It’s almost 7PM – time for me to make dinner.