How many hours per day do you spend online?
How many minutes per day do you text?
How much time do you spend looking at a blinking screen?
Are you totally productive for all of this time, or is there some time when you’re just wasting time? How do you feel when you’re wasting time? Full of passion? Or full of boredom and sadness? What could you be doing instead?
Could you be making a call to a donor? Having tea with a nonprofit colleague? Tabling at an event for your nonprofit? Going out and making connections for your nonprofit in the community? Taking a walk to clear your head?
Seth Godin recently wrote about which electronic interruptions you allow into your life.
“That email, Facebook and message queue is a lot longer than it used to be. For some people, it’s now a hundred or even a thousand distinct social electronic interactions a day. It’s as if a genie is whispering in your ear, “I have an envelope, and it might contain really good or really bad news. Want to open it?””
So if you want to take a digital detox, here’s how to start.
Get off of Facebook
Seriously, if you need me to list reasons,
1. This is not the way to fundraise, there are 100 better ways to get money for your nonprofit.
2. You don’t need to see your cousin’s 300 vacation pictures,
3. The like button has made “cause pages” obsolete, so people can’t become fans but only LIKE your nonprofit.
In short: What a waste of time. Even Betty White said so on Saturday Night Live!
Go for Inbox Zero.
That means all of the emails you’re currently saving because “You might need them someday,” no no girl, press that archive button or select all and press delete. You are not going to need them. Go through your flagged messages. Which emergencies already took care of themselves? Unflag, delete again! Messages from 2007? Unless it’s love letters, DELETE! Messages from 2008? DELETE! And don’t forget your sent box.
Also, there is a guy who writes more about why Inbox Zero is good.
Get clear for your goals for the day in the morning. Allow yourself to check email only after you have accomplished certain tasks.
I recommend doing a digital detox once a week.
Just take a break from everything. No email. No phone. No TV. No Video. No social networks. No screens of any kind.
Go to a poetry conference. Read a book in your bed. Take a bikeride with friends. Make some home-cooked meals. Write a letter. Go dancing. Paint a picture. Play your instrument. Do something completely selfish for yourself.
You’ll come back, refreshed, and ready to go. Tell your friends to shut their facebooks too, and come out to play with you.
I want to know what you want. Please tell me. Takes 5 mins. Tops.