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Information Overload and Your Home Business

Aug 17, 2007
A major complaint people have when trying to work on their home business is the sheer lack of time. There's so much to do, so much to learn, that you quickly run out of time.

It's easy to get run over by information. Most people are so connected to the outside world, with cell phones and email, along with all the online distractions, that it can be very hard to focus.

However, you do need to spend time regularly learning skills relevant to your home business. If you don't pay enough attention to what is going on in your industry you can quickly fall behind or be lacking in new skills.

It helps to set rules for yourself. With rare exceptions, only allow yourself to check your email at certain times. Believe it or not, many people can get away with checking it just once a day. Most things that go through email aren't so vital that it needs to be checked throughout the day. Your particular needs may sometimes dictate otherwise, but know the difference.

Demand respect for your working time. Don't allow people to call you all day when you need to be working. If you ask that your business be treated as seriously as a traditional job, people can be trained to let you work.

Perhaps most importantly, don't overdo your time spent reading and participating in forums and blogs. These are wonderful resources for information as well as networking, but they're also horrendous time sinks. If you figure out how long is reasonable to allocate to these, you can greatly increase your productivity while still learning.

Go through the email newsletters you get and cut out the junk. It's easy to subscribe to far more than you can ever reasonably read, and sometimes one that sounds good turns out to be little more than ads and hype for the next hot product. Cut out the junk and only read the ones that are often worth your time.

Know what you need to learn and what you will do better to hire someone else to do for you. You have certain skills that you need to keep up to date. But try to do it all and you are more likely to fall behind. Hire the right people to do the other things for you and keeping completely up to date is their problem. Then you only need to be aware of general trends in that area.

And of course, when you're researching something, try to stay focused on what you need to learn. It's very easy to get sidetracked and start reading everything that comes up in a sidebar to what you actually want to know, but that's a horrendous time waster. If it looks that good, drop it into the bookmarks for a later read. Then, when you still haven't read it three months later you can feel good about deleting it from your bookmarks folder.
About the Author
Stephanie Foster hopes that her http://www.aspectsofhomebusiness.com/blog/ blog isn't contributing too much to information overload, but tries to provide good information anyhow. She also shares more information on affiliate marketing at her site.
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