I don’t know about you, but Facebook takes up way too much of my time. I’ve been battling Facebook back and forth for some time. When it’s their job to create as an addictive platform as possible, it does make it rather difficult to get away from. My main aim is to boost my productivity and therefore leaving me more time for other things. The obvious answer is to delete Facebook, although for me that seems like an unnecessary step.
So in this post I’m going to share with you 10 ways to waste less time on Facebook, but still get all of the benefits. Some of these methods are ones I’ve already been using and some I’m now going to add in.
1. How much time are you spending on Facebook?
I mean this is the first question you have to answer. Do you spend too much time? Do you know for sure how much time you spend?
A great way to find this out is by installing the free browser plugin, Rescue Time, this tracks the activities you spend your time on and then at the end of the day you can see just how much time you have spent on each website. You can also try out Moment for your phone.
As you can see, today I’ve spent 1h 25mins, mostly lost in my Facebook Newsfeed (this isn’t quite a full day). While I don’t want to give up Facebook completely, I do want to limit my time to no more than 30 minutes a day. This should allow me to message everyone, see my notifications and generally just see what’s going on.
I’d say adding this plugin to your browser is a great way to find out what your doing everyday at work. Look it over a few days and you will start to realise there is a lot of time to be saved!
Now you know how much time you are wasting, here are 9 other ways to boost your productivity and find Facebook less annoying.
2. Delete the Facebook Mobile App
What do you really need Facebook for? Cat Videos? The Lad Bible? I want to use it primarily for Facebook messages, the rest is mostly just fluff and I can check the rest of it periodically.
Facebook themselves have now split these two features you have the Facebook app and the Messenger app. The simple time saver to stop you getting lost in your phone is to delete the Facebook app. How often are your notifications urgent? Most of the time they are just distracting, so just have the Messenger app.
3. Turn Notifications off on Mobile
Another way to get less distracted by Facebook is to change your notification settings. How often do you get a notification saying “Someone I don’t know has ALSO commented on your friends status”? Too much I’d say!
Head to the top right hand corner of your Facebook there is a drop down list, select settings then ‘Notifications’. You can change this so you stop receiving things like email, mobile or text messages.
*** 4. Turn off Autoplay on videos ***
I’ve given this stars because it deserves stars. I can’t remember what Facebook was like before autoplay videos. How many hours have you wasted watching cat videos since the day it was introduced? Too many to think about. Well ladies and gentleman, no more! Also in your setting in the drop down, you can choose ‘Videos’ and select Off on Auto-play Videos.
Trust me you won’t know what to do with all this extra time.
5. Turn Off Facebook Chat
Sometimes you aren’t even really on Facebook, but because you have the window open people see you are online. Then people start a conversation and time starts to disappear. At the bottom of the chat sidebar you can do a few different things, hide the sidebar or turn off chat are very useful when you don’t want to be disturbed.
6. Advanced Facebook Chat Settings
Another great thing you can do with Facebook chat, especially if you use it to speak to someone important, is to turn off chat for everyone except a few select people. This way you aren’t ‘pestered’ by your whole friends list. This can be done by clicking on ‘Advanced Settings’ in the chat options list.
7. Kill Your Newsfeed!
For me, stopping auto-play videos and this have the biggest impact. Using the aptly names Kill News Feed (this is the Chrome version, you can get it for all major browsers by Googling). This simply shuts down your News Feed but keeps all the messaging, chat and groups functions available. Kill News Feed simply stops you from getting lost on Facebook and it even gives you a reminder when you try misbehave.
8. Block Facebook
The next step up from killing your newsfeed is blocking Facebook entirely (at least when you should be working). This can be done in a few different ways. It can be done permanently through your browser, but I would recommend using Stay Focusd. This free plugin allows you to block Facebook for a certain amount of hours and set this for certain days.
If you don’t want to give up completely, you can use the Max Time Allowed setting and maybe give yourself 30 minutes a day before the sites you choose get blocked! If you aren’t using Chrome, try Leech Block for Firefox and Cold Turkey for Windows.
9. Deactivate Facebook
This is the final step if none of the previous steps are working. Simply heading to your settings in the top right and then click on ‘Security’, at the bottom you can deactivate your account. You can also turn this back on again. If you have exams to study for or just need a real break from Facebook, this is the option to choose without losing everything.
10. Turn off Game or Event Invites
We all have them, those ‘friends’ who send us Candy Crush invites (even in 2015) or those people promoting their latest club night. If you don’t want to delete these people on Facebook, then head to the settings page and select ‘Blocking’ on the left hand side. You can now add those offenders so you stop receiving their game or event invites. Not huge for productivity, but just one more annoying Facebook distraction gone.
I hope you enjoyed this post and start implementing some of these ideas to boost your daily productivity. My favourite two are definitely stopping autoplay videos and killing your newsfeed. You should check all this in Rescue Time and see how much time you get back in the next 7 days.