Recently, I went to an excellent networking event, networking has never been something I particularly enjoy (in the business sense) but I realised that my view of it was probably a little outdated and I needed to give it a go. It also tied in with an excellent guest speaker who was talking to us about how to use LinkedIn more effectively, and in my case, to actually use it!

We were asked to make sure we had the app on our phone so that we could be talked through certain aspects, so I downloaded it. Now this might not seem like a big deal, but I try and keep as few apps as possible on my phone that are work related, it just means that I am not constantly connected. I also don’t have Facebook on my phone to avoid scrolling overload but what harm would it do?

The women I met were great, the lunch was delicious, and the talk was not just interesting but incredibly useful and I came away feeling slightly smug that I had overcome my initial fear and also delighted that I had learned something new.

When I got home, I decided to get on the case and put some of my learnings into action so sat down at my laptop and started to make some changes on my LinkedIn profile. “So far so good” I thought to myself as I managed to change my profile banner and update some of my info, “now to update my recommendations” – this was particularly relevant as I think my most recent on my profile was about 3 years ago and I’m happy to say that I’ve certainly had many more up to date testimonials than that! I contacted many clients and waited for their responses.

In they came. It was wonderful and humbling and I was really grateful.

However, once I had started this task, up started popping the notifications and then there were more….and more. My phone was pinging left right and centre. I needed to respond to my lovely clients and thank them but when to do this? Should I do it that evening (a time I wouldn’t usually respond) or should I be looking at the app during working hours? Oh, the dilemma!

Obviously, those of you in the know, will know that once you are a more active on LinkedIn, you are constantly notified, there are articles to read, people to connect to, people to chat to – how on earth do you find the time to do all of this as well as do your actual job?

This doesn’t just apply to LinkedIn, as we all know only too well, your phone notifies you about EVERYTHING if you allow it, and as a coach, I usually encourage people to turn their notifications off as they are such a distraction, it’s also addictive.

Once again, we are back to that thing called balance. It’s working out what works best for you. Notifications (apart from a couple of things) don’t work for me, they distract me, so I have once again turned them off. However, I have made notes in my diary to check the various work sites regularly and respond when needed.

It’s easy to feel pressurised by social media and also by our peers but everyone does business and/or their life differently and it’s up to you to find the solution to keep you balanced and healthy.

If you feel overwhelmed by social media or are having notification nightmares, please do drop me a line, there is every chance I can help you find a more balanced approach to managing online.