Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Tips for Saving Your Cyber-Sanity

I occasionally become cyber-flooded. You can probably relate. Maybe you've had to get off the internet all together for a few days just to gather your wits and complete a project. But even if that's not the case, it's easy to drown in information overload.

Especially with blogs.

I love the blogosphere. There is virtually an expert out there in just about everything, who is willing to share their knowledge. However, if you follow even a few blogs, it can be hard to keep up with them.

So here are some tips for sand-bagging in cyberspace.

1. Use a reader that will pool all your follows or subscriptions into one place like Google Reader or Networked Blogs to be able to quickly sort through the mass of material coming in.

2. As much as you love certain blogs, don't feel like you have to comment on all of them. As a blogger myself, I thrive on comments. (Please, leave me one if you aren't too inundated.) But I can't take the time to comment on everything I read. I comment in certain instances. These are:

  • When I believe the writer needs encouragement, and my interest was truly piqued
  • I want to thank the author for providing timely, sought-after information
  • I want to help bring attention to this particular blog, piece, or writer
  • To enter a contest

3. Don't follow blogs unless you've really looked them over and are sure that they frequently contain content that will interest you. I follow one blog right now that I'm considering deleting because since my initial follow, very little has come along in way of content I find enriching.

4. Take a few minutes each day to whip through your reader, marking as "read" or "delete" the posts that you don't have time or inclination for, and giving a quick read to those you do. If you get too far behind, it'll feel like the waters have crested and deluged you. You can't keep up. If that does happen, unless you plan to spend 5 or 6 hours in a waiting room anytime soon, I'd just hit "delete" or "read" and start fresh. It's really just like keeping up with email. Sort - toss - sort - toss.

5. If a blog piece looks interesting, scan. In my opinion, the most worthy blog pieces are brief and concise. But if a long one comes along with a title that's a real grabber, scan it before you decide to devote a long read time to it.

Like any file in your cabinet or on your computer, your blog file needs occasional clean-up. I hope these little tips help keep your cyber-sanity on high and dry ground.


Kathi Oram Peterson said...

Great tips! I've used Google Reader in the past, but have a problem with it doubling up the blogs I follow. What's with that? Thanks the advice.

Naomi Musch said...

Thanks for stopping by, Kathi. Yeah, now and then these tools give me fits, too. But it beats the hunt and peck method of following, I guess!