Minimalist Manager Challenge Part 5: No Facebook

For my 5th #MinimalistManager Challenge task, I decided to…

Give up Facebook.

For 24 hours.

Keep reading to discover just how hard this was, what I did instead, and the lessons it taught me.

A Little Background…

The Minimalist Management is based on a philosophy where we reduce our reliance on unneeded things, and also increase our appreciation of the world around us.

I believe that 4 areas are important in making this successful:

  • Care for Self
  • Organize Surroundings
  • Prioritize Time
  • Help Others

In this post, I will share a Post-Mortem Evaluation of what happened to determine the root causes of actions to avoid as a business owner. A Post-Mortem has 4 steps:

  1. what happened
  2. what went well
  3. what didn’t go well, and
  4. how we can adjust for the future

Check out my first post to find out WHY I decided to do this challenge in the first place.

View this post on Instagram

Autumn is here, and it’s time for a new #minimalistmanager challenge! I’ll be experiencing tasks that get me closer to business goals, even if it’s uncomfortable… like eating #nosugar (tomorrow’s objective) 🍭🛑. Want to join me? Here’s how: . . . Pick 9 activities that feel slightly uncomfortable but move you toward your goals in four areas: • Care for Self • Organize Surroundings • Prioritize Time • Help Others If you own a business, consider ways to stretch yourself as an owner. Set aside a period of time to work on your challenge (I recommend 9 to 15 days). Write down your challenge tasks. Each day, pick one card out of a hat 🎩. [I scheduled 15 days with 9 activities; the extra days are to recognize and celebrate growth, or consider why it didn’t go so well.] I’ll be posting updates about my challenge here: https://laconteconsulting.com/blog Join me, and let me know what you learn about yourself!

A post shared by Grace LaConte (@lacontestrategy) on

The full list

Want to watch a video of my No Facebook task? Check it out here:


 

So what happened?

Part 5 of My Challenge: No Facebook

So in today’s challenge, I did three things:

  1. Logged out of the Facebook social media website and app on all my devices
  2. Noticed when and why I felt a compulsion to get on the app
  3. Participated in other (non-social media) activities instead.

Essential Area

This task fits into two categories:

  • Care for Self
  • Organize Surroundings
  • Prioritize Time
  • Help Others

I learned so much about myself by cutting out Facebook for a whole day. Instead of compulsively logging in and checking updates, my day was WAY more productive than I’d been in a while.

Post-Mortem Evaluation

Here is a summary of how this task went.

1. What happened

Although I like social media and think it’s a wonderful way to communicate, bad things happen when we get addicted to constantly checking it.

In the past, I dealt with another type of addictive behavior: compulsive overeating, which often leads to obesity (a very visible consequence). When you struggle with an addiction, it can be painful to talk about because of a deep sense of shame, even around family members and friends.

The first task in this challenge (No-Sugar Day) brought up a lot of old feelings around addictive behavior. And in the 4th task (Organizing My Office), I had to confront additional tendencies to hoard books.

So although I realized that it could be difficult, I really wasn’t sure how much of a compulsion my social media had become.

Some people give up distractions over a religious holiday called Lent, in order to get closer to God. For me, this task was more of an experiment to see how obsessive I was about checking social media.

This challenge started at midnight the night before. I logged out of the Facebook website on my laptop, deleted the app from my phone, and decided to enter this experiment with a curiosity.

I wondered: “How often would I feel the need to check the posts of my online friends and family?

…Turns out that it was a LOT.

2. What went well

The urge to be distracted happened to me throughout the day, about every 15 to 30 minutes. Eventually, other things took the place of constantly looking for the latest news or story or picture.

I found so many other things to replace that urge: things like focusing on my body, the people around me, and enjoying the cloud-filled sky outside.

Mealtimes were especially interesting. I put my phone away and connected with my children and husband instead of checking for status updates.

3. What didn’t go well

As with the No-Sugar Day and Organizing My Office, this task brought out some unpleasant reminders that I needed to do more self-awareness work.

I felt frustrated by a feeling of disconnect from my normal circle of friends. The compulsion to consume information was shut off cold-turkey, and I realized just how reliant I have become on Facebook as my main source of news.

Instead, I decided to connect with my close friends with phone calls and in-person conversations, which was much more satisfying than any Direct Message or comment on their page.

4. How I can adjust for the future

The biggest takeaway from this task was a self-check of my feelings:

  • What is my motivation for checking Facebook yet again?
  • Which need am I trying to satisfy?
  • What benefit do I expect it to bring?

This journey is ongoing for me, but I think all of us should be asking why we have such a strong need to constantly check our devices.

  • What good things is it replacing?
  • What is this doing to our relationships?
  • How is it minimizing our consciousness of the outside world?
  • What are we missing out on the value of experiencing new things and contributing to others?

Distractions like smartphones and other devices actually take time and attention away from more important tasks that could help us reach our goals.

Summary

I encourage you to consider minimizing distractions like social media. But consider that getting rid of something all at once can actually backfire.

Similar to going on a diet, where you decide to “eliminate” and “give up” a variety of foods you enjoy, totally cutting something out of your life can make you want it even more. This can bring short-term results, but eventually you are more likely to return to old habits.

Instead, it is much more effective to enter this type of self-examination process with curiosity. Ask yourself WHY you feel the compulsion.

  • What are the root causes that could be causing your behavior?
  • Which fears have I been too afraid to face?
  • How does it feel when I can’t do the enjoyable task that I’ve temporarily eliminated?
  • Have I been holding on to false beliefs about myself or my goals? (“You’ll never succeed”; “That will never work”; “You’re not good enough”)?
  • Which choices are keeping me from reaching my goals?
  • Am I subconsciously derailing my chances of succeeding?

Questions like this can help you determine the barriers that keep your company from getting to the next level of success.

The next step is to ask: What can you do to make a sustainable change? Rather than cutting out ALL social media (and announcing it dramatically) is to consider logging off for shorter, temporary periods to re-focus on what is most important.

 

If you want to discuss some practical ways to move your business toward your goals, let’s talk.


Follow my #MinimalistManager journey:

Stay tuned for the next installment, where I will spend a day considering ways to show gratitude.


Grace LaConte is a Strategic Risk Expert who helps service business owners find and fix hidden risks that keep them from achieving long-term success. Using her experience as a Risk Officer in the healthcare and technology fields, Grace shares a refreshingly honest approach to uncovering hidden risks and opportunities. Learn more at http://laconteconsulting.com, or connect with her on Twitter @lacontestrategy.

Tell us what you think!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s