Social Media vs. Time – is Social Media a horrible distraction?

Is it just me or is Social Media like TV used to be when I was in my teens (I don’t really watch it these days!) – A black hole for time?!

This is rhetorical because I will tell you, it isn’t just me. I have asked around countless friends and colleagues and everyone seems to know it, but not have the realisation until it’s vocalised and even then want to ignore it, like saying something against Social Media is a sin…

Now, before I do get lynched for the title by all the digital / mobile / social media purists out there I would like to point out I specialise in Talent in this space, I LURRVE technology and all the new platforms we get to interact on / with and I am so far from a “not in my life ANTI digitalist” it’s not funny….however, what concerns me is simply that is it too addictive for people to trust themselves around it…just like TV used to be.

I have spent 5 hours so far today locked away at home (Go #ROWE!) building an RFP for a major banking tender we are through to the 2nd round of. However, a lot of that time has been flitting between this and Tweets, comments on blogs, articles, arguments and generally being social (in my line of work I would like to add). It’s not that I spent any particularly long sustained period of time on any one Tweet or comment. Rather it took me away from what I was doing (a complex and thought proving RFP tender response) long enough for me to lose my thread and therefore oodles of time ramping up and down….the answer – I shut them all down. This might fill some people with horror (it really is ok you know – I haven’t passed into obscurity or anything) and to others it might seen obvious. On the latter I would like to say two things though. It often isn’t obvious until it comes to you like a light bulb moment or if someone suggests it. As it goes I am actually quite good at chunking time – I just never thought to close down my social accounts when working. It’s all too new and shiny and exciting (and work related!) – a dangerous combination.

So, yes Social Media is a horrible distraction when you are trying to work on something else, and so like all things that are distractions from your end goals, don’t have it on in the background. Devote time to it when you need to and make sure it’s all off when you really have to concentrate on specific tasks that have nothing to do with social platforms. You will feel liberated!

Finally some useful tips on doing one thing at a time form OrganizeIT for those that are thinking, ‘well this sounds like a plan, but what now? I’m rubbish at time management anyway…’:


About Rob Fanshawe

Currently MD, Asia for Xpand Group, living in Singapore with his wife and dog (golden retriever), his passion in life is simple, “people”. He loves everything to do with meeting and understanding them to helping them and businesses realise their potential through the resulting positive connections.


  1. Social Media vs Time – Is Social Media a Horrible Distraction? « Xpand Xpress - March 30, 2012

    […] more of what Rob has to say on Social Media vs Time – Is Social Media a Horrible Distraction. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

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