Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Balancing Twitter and Facebook with family life

I read an article today about Twittering  and Facebooking  and the effects it is having on family life. I know that after a hard day at work parents sit at their home computer or on their phone and just Twitter and Facebook away. It is easy to get caught up and Twitter  about a interesting article or chat on Facebook  with a friend or coworker.

I know a lot of parents are guilty of  spending too much time on social media. After a stressful day at work I sometimes find myself wanting to get on Facebook  or Twitter  and see what is going on with the people I follow or I have friended. How does this affect children who long for their parent's affection? How many hours have been lost on Facebook or Twitter when these hours can be spent with their children? To find out if you are addicted to Social Media ask yourself these questions.

1. Do you spend more time on Social Media than your family?
2. Do you have more friends on Facebook or Twitter than in real life?
3. Do you hear Direct Message pings when you lay down to bed or use the blow dryer and run to your computer to answer?
4. Do you put an "@" symbol in front of someone's name when directing a message to them in emails?
5. You panic when your favorite Social Media site goes down.
6. You give other guys/girls your social network URL instead of your phone #.
7. You lie about the amount of time you spend on Social Media.
8. Have you ever pondered starting a social network for people that have a problematic addiction to   social networking?
9. Do you get excited when you have more friends on a social network than you did last week despite the fact that you'll probably never talk to them?
10. You check your social network email first thing in the morning, at lunch, and before bedtime without fail?
11. Upon meeting people in a real-life social situation you ask them if they are on your favorite social network.
12. You go to Digg , Reddit,  Yahoo ! Buzz or another social news site for your news as opposed to CNN , WSJ , NYT or other traditional news sites.
13. You belong to more Social Media sites than extracurricular organizations.

I usually "Tweet" or "Facebook" after the kids are asleep. I have some alone time for about an hour when my wife is putting the kids to sleep. That is the only time I get into social media. I might also do a blog post during this alone time. Hopefully parents across the U.S will put away the phone or log off the home computer and give your kids the attention they deserve.

How do you balance social media and family time?

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