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How Web 2.0 Can Ruin Your Life And What To Do About It

Written by George Manty  · January 16, 2008

Ok, so web 2.0 can’t, in and of itself, ruin your life but…

Web 2.0 has created an online environment that is designed to make us spend more and more time online, which in turn can ruin your life.

Spending A Majority Of Your Free Time Online Is Not Healthy

Errr… isn’t this a blog about making money ONLINE?

Well, yes but…

You can’t spend all your time online and then find time to exercise. You can’t spend all your time online AND cultivate a relationship with your kids. You can’t spend all your time online AND strengthen the relationship with your spouse and/or find a spouse. You can’t spend all your time online AND have a relationship with God. You can’t spend all your time online AND …. (you fill in the blanks)....

You need to have balance and spending too much time making “friends” online can make you unbalanced.

That said, Web 2.0 has it’s good points. As an Internet marketer, leveraging web 2.0 sites can be a great way to make money online, but it does have a cost.

What I Learned In 2007 About Marketing With Web 2.0

I spent a great deal of time in 2007 building online relationships using web 2.0. I would never want to give up the friendships I have made, BUT

It hurt my off-line relationships with God, with my wife, with my kids, and it also hurt my health. It wasn’t just spending time with Web 2.0 that hurt me but also spending time reading email 10+ times a day. In 2007 I spent WAY too much time checking email. In 2008 I am going to significantly decrease the amount of time I spend experimenting with web 2.0 sites and on other activities like reading email. It’s just not worth it!

But Isn’t Web 2.0 The Best Way To Get Traffic Online?

Yes and No…

Leveraging Web 2.0 is one way to get good traffic to your site, however it is not the only way to get good traffic online. There are many other ways to increase your website traffic that can be just as effective as Web 2.0. In fact, you NEVER want to rely on only ONE form of traffic generation for ALL of your website traffic!. This is so important I am going to say it again:

You NEVER want to rely on ONE form of traffic generation for ALL of your website traffic!

Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that you should give up on Web 2.0. What I am saying is that Web 2.0 and other advancements in technology are making it increasingly easier to lose focus on what is important. What I am saying is that spending too much time on surfing the web, making web 2.0 connections, voting on your favorite sites, etc. can ruin your life.

So, what can you do to keep Web 2.0 From Ruining Your Life?

Here are three ways to prevent Web 2.0 from adversely affecting your life:

  1. Schedule Your Online Time
    Make sure you always have enough time for the most important things in your life by setting aside a certain amount of time each day that you can be online. First set aside time for the most important things in your life, like spending time with your spouse, kids, etc. Then with the remaining time set a schedule for your online time. Doing this will make you realize just how much time you are wasting on tasks that have no bearing to your emotional, financial, mental, and spiritual well being.

    As Internet marketers, it is important that we schedule our time wisely. There is something called the 80/20 rule that you need to keep in mind when you make a schedule. The 80-20 rule (also known as the Pareto principle, the principle of factor sparsity, and the law of the vital few) basically says that, for most events, 80% of the effects comes from 20% of the causes. In online business this translates to statements like “80 percent of your profits comes from 20 percent of your customers”, and “20 percent of your efforts results in 80 percent of your profits”. Your goal is to schedule as much of your time as possible on that “20 percent” that creates the real profits in your business. Scheduling time to work on the things that actually make you more money is crucial to your success. With Web 2.0 it is easy to focus on the “social” aspects of being online and spend VERY little time actually working on things that make you money.

  2. Focus, Focus, Focus
    Web 2.0 is not all bad. After experimenting with social networks, you should find 1 or 2 (maybe 3 or 4) that you really want to focus on and forget about the other ones. When you focus on 1 or 2 social sites for marketing purposes you can become an expert at using those 1 or 2 sites for getting traffic to your sites. If you don’t focus on 1 or 2 sites, you will wind up spreading yourself too thin and not being able to make a big impact using any of them. Not focusing on 1 or 2 Web 2.0 sites for marketing purposes can be a total waste of your time.
  3. Step Away From The Computer
    Like I mentioned in step 1 you need to schedule time to spend off the computer. Just like you should schedule your online time, you should schedule time to do the things that are important to you. Otherwise you might rationalize spending more and more time online.

    Take a step away from the computer and live your life. Do the things you enjoy, spend time with your family and friends. Don’t sacrifice a REAL life for an online one.

Final Thoughts

Would you rather have the most friends on MySpace or have a good marriage? Would you rather have the largest community on MyBlogLog or have a great relationship with your kids? Would you prefer to be a top rated Digger or have an online business that pays your bills?

If you spend too much time experimenting with all of the latest and greatest social networks you will find yourself spending WAY more time online in 2008 while making less money than you did in 2007. I don’t know about you, but I want to make more money online while working less, not less money online while working more.

Spending time using Web 2.0 to promote your business, make friends, and have fun can be very good, but spending TOO MUCH time in the Web 2.0 world can ruin your life and be bad for your business.


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Comments

13 Responses to “How Web 2.0 Can Ruin Your Life And What To Do About It”

  1. HL Grove on January 17th, 2008 4:37 am

    I most certainly agree with you. The reason we start with making money ONLINE is so that we need to spend less time working and have more time doing the other things that are important in our lives.

    It is important to schedule your time well. I have a certain amount of time I spend in the gym each morning, play gholf frequently, play squash with friends and family and like to go bowling just for some extra fun in my life. All this while I make most of my money from investments that give me a passive income. And I must admit, I am probably one of the happiest people alive and I feel great!

    Best of luck with your new goals in 2008 and I hope you can spend more time doing what really makes you happy while still making enough money online to pay for those things…

  2. James Mann on January 17th, 2008 5:29 am

    Hello my name is James and I’m a blogiholic and Web 2.0 was ruining my life…

    I agree that Web 2.0 has me online much more than I probably should be and I know I need to spend more time offline and doing other things.

    For that reason I started taking weekends off. I prepare any blog posts I might want to upload, ahead of time, and have them activate while I am doing family things or fishing or playing guitar or or.

    I got really sick of living on my computer when it really wasn’t necessary, more of a habit.

    And after 25 years of marriage I still want to spend time with my bride.

  3. George Manty on January 17th, 2008 9:45 am

    @ HL
    Thanks. Glad things are going so well for you.

    @James
    I was a blogoholic too… Glad you have found a way to spend more time offline.

  4. Rick Katz on January 17th, 2008 11:06 am

    This is really good advice. I always encourage people
    to work smarter not just harder.

    You really need to have an edge because there’s
    so much competition out there.

    If anyone’s interested, go ahead and download my
    free report on this subject at:

    http://www.BigDogHeavyHitters.com

  5. Terry on January 17th, 2008 2:50 pm

    You are definitely correct. Spending too much time online can ruin your life. You can even take it a little further. Spending too much time online can ruin your online business.

    The end goal of business isn’t you always doing the work. It’s find a way to put systems and leverage in place to accomplish more. That takes time in the beginning, but your direction should always be in finding ways to create greater leverage for your business.

    And you’ll find a few days off…or a week or more off will open you up to ideas to grow your business you’ve never even considered.

  6. George Manty on January 17th, 2008 2:56 pm

    @Terry,

    You are so right, it can ruin your business as well. Thanks for commenting. I love your blog, and think you would be a great person for people to learn from…

    @Rick,

    Thanks for stopping by.

  7. Matt Tutt on January 18th, 2008 6:29 am

    It can be unhealthy to work constantly at the computer, sometimes I find it more beneficial to have a break so that I have time to think and plan my ideas for my websites…and then when I am back at the computer it helps me to become more productive.
    Great advice btw George.

  8. George Manty on January 18th, 2008 7:33 am

    @Matt

    I have started doing that same thing and I agree … it really helps.

  9. GoYin Tara on January 18th, 2008 6:55 pm

    The last year or so we have been leveraging web 2.0 sites. They have been an excellent way to increase our sites traffic and meet new prospects. But your right, it can be time consuming.

    What we now do is, work off a set schedule. One day a week for 2-4 hours we use web 2.0 sites to network. Because it is so addicting, we had to make a schedule and stick to it. Now, when we do work the web 2.0 scene, we work more efficiently.

  10. Mark Dykeman on January 19th, 2008 12:02 pm

    Sound advice, George

  11. Dwayne Charrington on February 12th, 2008 12:16 am

    I think Web 2.0 is still a legitimate way to make money. Web 2.0 is still a pretty big deal, when Web 3.0 gets here it will be another excuse to Hi Jack traffic to your blog and make money.

    Not always a bad thing ūüėČ

    – Dwayne Charrington.
    http://www.dwaynecharrington.com

  12. Crazy Affiliate | Affiliate X Factor on March 17th, 2008 8:20 pm

    Step away from the computer. That’s the best tip, in my opinion. I tried to load some of the work away from the computer nowadays.

    Things like planning and brainstorming could be done on a paper and they really make a difference when I’m not sitting behind the computer typing. There are less distractions and I feel more productive.

    Of course, taking a break from business work is also a good idea to do regularly. When I come back usually I’m in the mood again.

  13. Keep Your Priorities Straight on March 18th, 2008 8:51 am

    [...] were planning on playing with your kid. It’s easy to stay up late at night working on your social networking profile and be too tired the next day to take time out of your day to write your spouse that love note you [...]





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