Using tech to reduce tech overwhelm

old style tech overload

photo credit: x-ray delta one via photopin cc

From social media updates and interactions to emails, blogging and newsletters, the tendency to feel overwhelmed by technology is common.

Using tech to fight tech overwhelm may feel counter intuitive. However, there are many ways to set up smart workflows and systems to reduce the need to “step into” the constant distractions. By creating smarter workflows and eliminating the repetitive tasks, you can focus on a far more productive working day.

Automate social media updates

Social media is a common area which small businesses struggle to find time for. It can also be as source of distraction and procrastination for many.

Use a social media scheduling tool such as Buffer or Hootsuite to schedule posts throughout the day or week. Jump in from time to time for live updates, but make sure the “backbone” of your content sharing is covered.

If you feel overwhelmed by material to share, try using Pocket. I have set up a system in IFTTT whereby favourite tweets get sent straight to my Pocket app. In turn, when an article on Pocket is favourited, it is automatically shared again to my Buffer account. By avoiding the time needed to stay on Facebook, Twitter or Google Plus, I am able to find great, relevant content to share without getting distracted.

Set-up automated systems to deal with common scenarios

Everyday transactions or common scenarios are great examples of actions which would benefit from a tech automation.

For example, the process of booking a free consultation can be automated by using an email service such as Mailchimp and Schedule Once. The whole client experience from the website enquiry to booking a session can then be managed remotely and automatically without needing input from you at all.

Similarly, set up automated emails for common enquiries. In Gmail, Canned Responses are great for emails that require similar replies, and canned responses can also be set up to automatically trigger according to criteria such as subject line and sender.

Match your brain waves with tech

Our brains work most efficiently in “the zone”; this mode of working can be aided by listening to alpha wave inducing sounds from Focus At Will or Coffitivity ( I am writing this article now with both of them in tandem!).

Match your ambience for productivity with a timed app to emulate the Pomodoro technique, timed working for optimum productivity.  Chrome plugins such as Pomodoro Me or web based versions work really well.

Tech can also buy us some distraction-free time to work in. Hush for Mac silences email and social media alerts for a specified time to allow for distraction free chunks of working time.

Resources to aid automation:

Mailchimp and Aweber

IFTTT.com and Zapier

Gmail

Pocket

Buffer

For further free smart workflow information, my series on Smart and Savvy Tech in 31 days is currently running on my website, www.dexterousdiva.co.uk.

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