Tweet Responsibly: My New Twitter Hack for Avoiding Time Suck

by | Sep 30, 2020 | Productivity

I love Twitter.

No, I really love Twitter. From following my sports feeds during a game to chatting about interesting topics with folks from around the globe to sharing the random thought that just popped into my head, Twitter is often my go-to social media account.

But Twitter doesn’t always love me back.

While I often set out to send a quick DM, it’s become far too easy to get sucked into the dark hole of endless scrolling. Then, forty-five minutes later I look up and face my next task with reduced available time. It’s a spiral that isn’t healthy and therefore I need to work on it or avoid losing Twitter forever.

My New Twitter Hack

Before going to Twitter to send that DM or post a thought, I’m going to:

  1. Confirm that I have ample time to respond to whatever awaits me
  2. Plan a time to come back and respond to any feedback my post creates

The first one is important because opening Twitter is like opening a Birthday present from a free-spirited uncle, you’re not exactly sure what’s going to be there. Going into the app with ample time (predecided) to respond to whatever awaits will avoid added chaos and disruption when I can least afford it.

The second part is yet another precommitment, but this one geared towards responding to any feedback a post might create. Getting feedback and creating interesting conversations is why I use Twitter in the first place. But checking every 15 minutes to see if someone has responded clearly isn’t the best way to do this. By setting this time aside up front, I’ll be sure to check-in later while also being mentally freed up to do other things.

Let’s face it, these apps can be great. As Nir Eyal points out, we just need to continue “hacking back” along the way.

I’ll let you know how this one works out. And feel free to bust me if you catch me breaking my policy. That’s what accountability is all about.

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