Make A New (Twitter) Plan, Stan

I said, “Hey, you know, breakdowns come
And breakdowns go
So what are you going to do about it?
That’s what I’d like to know” – Paul Simon, “Gumboots

If you’ve been reading the last few posts, you’ve been reading my critique of my relationship with Twitter.  If our positions were reversed, I’d be thinking what Paul Simon was saying to his friend in a taxi headed downtown.  I’d be thinking, “What are you going to change about the way you use Twitter?”

I’m going to tweet a little less.  I’ve tweeted 37,608 tweets in roughly 5 years and 7 months, which averages to 18 tweets a day.  How much less?  I’m going to limit myself to an average of 9 tweets a day, so that my current use and cold turkey meet each other half way.

I have vastly reduced the number of people I follow.  Before this assessment started, I was following about 10,500 different accounts.  Yes, it did make it hard to get to know anybody all that well.  How many people am I following now?  28.  How many of the 10,472 unfollowed accounts noticed being unfollowed?  Six.  Those six are part of the 28 I’m following.  I’m also following some close friends and some news sources I regularly read.

I’m going to limit the number of people I follow in a given time period.  What’s the number and time period?  One new follow per day.  You might say “But there are so many splendid people to follow on Twitter.”  There are indeed, but my plan is to let the pressure to follow someone build, let them become more luminous in my inner sight, until it is intuitively obvious to the most casual observer that I should follow them.

I’m going to construe Twitter follows as an invitation for conversation.  For example, I was recently followed by Dr. Dwight Webb, Professor Emeritus in the Counselor Education program at the University of New Hampshire.  With a few moments of Googling, I discovered that he is the author of a book titled “50 Ways To Love Your Leaver.”  I never would have discovered this if I had been obsessing on having more followers.  I sent him an email saying a little bit more about myself than what he would find in my Twitter flow.

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