BECAUSE REGULAR READERS are expressing frustration with too much to read and not enough time to do it, I am throttling back on my blogging and encouraging readers to follow my tidbits as newsfeeds. I am driven to doing this because I think I need to help people conquer their time deficits. Besides, astute viewers know I'm declining in readership. My composite reads, views, and listens have more than doubled since 2005 but I've dropped 1000 daily readers since April 2007. Now, 2500 daily visitors drop by only once a fortnight. So if the audience has found better reading elsewhere, I am not gong to write for the screen. Outside, the summer sun give me longer days. The garden, in dire need of major structural work, beckons. So I will go there, returning to the shade with a digital dictaphone that can record my musings faster than I can type them. I'm calling time on this blog for most of the summer. I'll still make a few posts every week but I've got to focus on launching a few projects behind the scenes and that means diverting time and energy to the real world.
While writing this, I'm reading how Tom Murphy cannot stay abreast his lifestream and Neville Hobson cannot cope with requests from new friends through social media. Like me, they have to cut back. Unlike me, they don't have a baby on the way and a garden launching invasive seeds into the summer breeze.
Like Tom Murphy, I think time is the single most important element when considering the impact of online social media. You can never get more time--you always get less time to accomplish things as you mature. I believe you actually lose more time as you march through life because you miss opportunities or you pay heavily in opportunity costs.
When I left life inside the beltway of Washington, D.C., I lost important time management skills and never tried to regain them. I adopted the launch schedule routine as an instructor pilot for several years, flew around the world more times than I can admit and managed life from crew rest to post-mission briefing, month-in and month-out. Anything that fell outside of that hectic routine was happenstance. For some reason, even today it feels alright to let things slide instead of focusing on finishing them. That worked when you were chronically fatigued after consecutive weeks of long trans-Atlantic air refueling flights but that's not a good way to build professional relationships and that attitude has to change. I'm starting with home repairs, then focusing on academic coursework alongside specifying some exciting group projects.
In the fringes of my life--between cups of coffee--is a horde of social media that I have to manage more effectively. I've decided to trim my tweats and focus on my Jaiku presence. I will kill my mail every other day but some of that mail needs to come to my mobile phone if I'm serious about managing 350 daily mails. I have to accelerate my reading of newsfeeds, something I do fastest with Google Reader in list view or FreeNews when scrolling through lines of summaries on my mobile phones. I'll play in Facebook and LinkedIn as well as add content to TouristR and FlickR. I have discovered that much of my actionable content cross-pollinates across those places. It's easier to skim and read stuff when you can view it quickly through various lenses. I delete emails from all social media services without opening them and count on the first screen after log-in with a social network to show me action items without clicking them to open.
So for those who have read this far, if you want to peer into my musings, consider checking me out on Facebook, LinkedIn, Jaiku, OpenCoffee, Flickr, del.icio.us and podcasting in Ireland. I can update and check all of those places on both my phones and my browser and also publish smaller slices of summaries that are quicker reads than my regular blog posts.
And if you decide the alternatives are not for you, I'm glad to have saved you some time.
Tom Murphy -- "Time"
Brian Solis -- "The Future of Communications"
Bernie Goldbach on Facebook: http://tippinst.facebook.com/profile.php?id=699587348 wishing it generated an RSS feed. You have to jump hoops if you want to see me on LinkedIn.
My bookmarks sit at http://del.icio.us/topgold
My photostream comes with an RSS feed.
I like Jaiku and you can follow me there as a newsfeed if you want.