Social Media and Productivity

I’m a late bloomer in the whole social media scene.  I remember signing up for Twitter when it first came out, and thinking “I’ll never use this…”.  I still don’t use it very much at all.  I think I average ~5 tweets a day.  On [facebook][1], I let my friends know what I’m doing maybe twice a month.  If you compare this to those who actually get paid for this stuff, there is NO comparison.  I’m a spec of dust in the twittersphere.  I still like doing it though.  I think it’s a great way to meet people, and branch out.

However, something alarmed me recently.  I do not get any monetary gain from posting to twitter, facebook, friendfeed, or my blog.  It is not a part of my job.  What alarmed me was, I’ve noticed I get a sense of accomplishment for doing these things.  I don’t think I should, as there is no real value in these things.  It’s a pasttime, a hobby, something to do when there’s nothing else to do.  What I’ve also noticed is, I have a tendency to try to squeeze these things in-between doing things I’m supposed to do.  This is bad when those things have a tendency to take longer than expected.  It’s all about your train of thought.  How easy is it for one small task to explode into an hours worth of reading?  It’s happened to me before many times.  I’ll click a link on Twitter, which takes me to someone’s blog which I’m interested in, so I read the article, which also has several links that I invariably must read to fully encapsulate the purpose of the article, but then someone makes an interesting addendum or criticism in the comments along with their own links which must be read as well.  The next thing I know, I’m 50 years old.  Ok, that’s exaggerating, but you get the point (time flies).  I’ve easily wasted entire days engrossed in absorbing information, that I’ll look at the clock “5 minutes from when I sat down that morning AM” only to see hours have passed.

However, I feel like I accomplished something by doing that.  I learned something I didn’t previously know.  The question is, will I ever actually use that knowledge?  Does knowledge always need to be 100% useful to make it worthwhile?

I try to keep my information inflow trimmed to the bare minimum, which is already too much as it is.  Is this an acceptable way to spend time?  I hear a lot of “you just have to manage your time”, but I think that falls more along the line of “you just have to eat healthy”.  Everybody knows they need to do it, but very few actually do.

I’m not sure that makes sense, or if I accomplished everything I originally meant to say.  Too many distractions.  Gotta go.