Friday, May 20, 2011

Streamlining your online life

The other day at work it struck me how much information is available about me on the internet. It really is quite scary when you put together my blog, twitter and facebook etc how much a stranger could piece together about my life. The other factor is with all these different social networking sites it can sometimes be overwhelming to go on the internet and make sure eveything is up to date. Here are a few little handy tricks that I have found useful.

Facebook: lets be honest, there are people on fb who are most likely your friends because their sticky beaks and want to know whats going on in your life. Do we really want every acquaintance we have ever meet knowing all about us? The rule I apply is - if this person saw me on the street would they stop and talk to me? If not then I don't add them as a friend. Sometimes the answer is yes they would and I still dont add them. Why? Because sometimes its nice to run into people and hear how their life is going without having to say oh I already know all that because I read it on facebook. I definitely recommend having a look at who your friends with on facebook and deciding whether or not you want them to be able to access your profile anymore or whether you look forward to catching up with them one day when you see them again.

Another good idea is to set some time aside to look at the photos your tagged in as sometimes photos go up without you even realising. Generally I untag myself in anything I wouldn't want my boss or my Grandma to see. With employers being super savy these days it pays to take extra precautions.

Email: I realised today I have five emails! Who needs five email addresses? I certainly don't but unfortunately I have got myself into the predicament that they all are used to access different online accounts so cutting down is going to take time and energy. Over the next couple of weeks I am going to try and cut down to three emails. This means less accounts that have have the ability to be hacked and more efficent use of time when checking emails.

Did you know that research has found that checking your emails can be one of the most stressful parts of the day? Try to set aside set periods of time to check your email rather then constantly checking it through out the day. Deal with each email as it comes in - have tabs such as urgent, bills, blog, social, Need no reply and move emails straight from your inbox into the relevant tab. You can then come back when you have time and deal with each tab one at a time. This means next time you open your email you wont feel overwhelmed by everything thats in there.

Another "clean out" I am in the process of is unsubsribing to certain websites. I obviously went through a phase where I signed up to every website I visited and now I wake up every morning to alot of "junk mail" so I am slowly unsubsribing as they come to my inbox. This will also help with reducing that feeling of overwhelment when you first open your inbox.

Blog: at the moment this is my biggest concern. I have felt as though my blog is all over the place and I haven't been able to keep up with all the blogs I like to read. The little blog makeover has definitely re-inspired me a little bit but there is a few other things I am implementing to keep things more under control.

Firstly I am trying to reduce the amount of tags I use. For every new post I pretty much start a new tag so over the next week or so I am retagging everything so that it will fit into one of the new categories to the right. I also think these tags will help give me direction and inspiration for future posts.

I am also reducing my ever expanding google reader. I love commenting on other people's blogs but just opening my reader and seeing the scary "You have over 1000 unread posts" often results in me closing the page and hiding under the blankets. Today I had a cull of blogs I don't  read anymore and am now following 100 blogs (down from 150ish) which means all the posts in my reader are from blogs I am genuinely interested in.

Twitter: twitter is probably (in my opinion) the easiest social networking site to keep track of. My main tip is to keep checking who is following you and block anyone who looks dodgey or is spammy.


  1. Sounds like you're being organised, that always help with blogging I think. I retagged my blog a few months ago so I don't envy you that position, its worth it though.

    I follow far too many blogs, its crazy, I think I need to be a bit more brutal with my reader too :)

  2. I have been thinking along very similar lines recently. It is so time-consuming to keep on top of it all. I think I need to set aside time for online life and stop letting myself get carried away.

  3. This was awesome Megan. I think I need to cull blogs as well. I have soo many. But my Reader won't let me delete the blogs which is really annoying. I love that you are streamlining your blog. It's something I want to do.

  4. Excellent post! This is something that I've been thinking about a lot lately. Checking my emails always send me into a slight panic haha. Being relatively new to twitter, I also find that I'm spread a bit more thin these days. Where once I could focus solely on reader comments on my blog, I know have another thing that I need to keep on top of. Oh, technology woes...

  5. I agree... Awesome post! I have five emails as well. Crazy! I think a clean out of blogs is a good idea. Or I might just do the google reader. I tried going through all the blogs I follow and unfollowed a few, but then I got sick of it. So much time and effort.

  6. the internet sure makes life complicated... but what would be do without it! :)

  7. I love this idea. After I graduated earlier this both, I went through my Facebook friends and narrowed it down to about 300. I still feel like it's too many. I only have 3 e-mails, but it still feels like a lot!

  8. You have a beautiful blog. Yes, the internet is good and bad.

  9. Thank you for writing this. These are great goals to have. I just might use some of them.

  10. Fantastic idea! I have been feeling a little overwhelmed with keeping up with everyone and everything on the internet! I think when Facebook first came out, I accepted everyone's friend requests and a few months ago I had a clear out and removed people I barely spoke to - I feel so much better about it!

  11. I agree, i'm the same with Facebook, i never add any randoms and those who wouldn't even say hello if i walked past them in the street.

    Sadie xx

  12. I used to have 5 emails too. Now I'm down to one simple addres.

    ps. Have you tried Bloglovin'
    it's much easier to keep track of your favorite blogs. Thank you for the birthday wishes :)

  13. Such a good idea. I've already culled my facebook down to a more reasonable number. My blog 'following' list needs a look at though. There's a few that haven't updated in months and months, or ones I simply don't read anymore that I really should stop following.

    x Jasmine

  14. great ideas especially as i am currently in my googlereader and it says i have 182 posts to go...


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