How to keep from tweeting life awayBeing on a panel with fellow music therapists Michelle Erfurt, Rachel See, Kat Fulton and Megan Resig at the 2013 American Music Therapy Conference was a blast!. The promo video created by Megan Resig captures the fun we had sharing our experiences.

Be sure and check out Kat’s answers to the many blogging questions posed during #HowToBeAnAwesomeMTOnline. All of us are continuing to share follow-up information to answer your burning questions. 

One of the questions asked was how to keep from tweeting your life away. Here are four tips to assist you.

1. Set your own time limits and a timer. 

Just like much of social media, it is easy to spend a lot of time sharing and connecting with others. Establish your limits and stick to them. Timers can assist you in keeping to the limits you set.

2. As you add others to follow, assign them to a lists.

Twitter provides simple instructions for creating lists and assigning them to lists. By taking a few seconds to do this, you can focus on various interests and further control your time. Know which lists are a priority for you. This can include special hashtags you are following including those for Tweetchats. Respond or read priority lists first. Keep reading to learn more on how to do this.

3. Use a tool such as Hootsuite or TweetDeck creating columns from your lists. 

While it is possible to look at posts by lists on Twitter it is cumbersome to do so.These tools allow me to do so while helping control what you read and when.

My priority lists are mentions/interactions, direct messages, then a set order of my lists. While I general review all of my mentions/interactions and direct messages in general I only look at the most current posts on a list. For example, I may only go back an hour on a top priority list and 30 minutes on a lower priority list. Some days by the time I comment and share a few tweets I may only get to a few lists before my time is up.

One of the reasons TweetDeck helps me is the ability to clear a column when I am done reading and responding. A little “out of sight, out of mind” helps move me forward. And, it keeps me from re-reading if I make a second visit during the day.

4. Know that the Twitterverse will still be there if you need to be way for a while.

Like many forms of social media and social interactions, regular participation builds relationships. Yet we all have times other parts of our life require our attention. Twitter will still be there are you can jump back into the socializing.

Have other tips to keep from tweeting away your life? Share them in the comments below.

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