Unlike most of my peers, I avoided Twitter like the plague when it launched in 2006. I thought, “Why would I subscribe to a timeline of status updates? That’s the worst part of Facebook!”. I have since ditched FB altogether, and just signed up for Twitter a couple months ago after seeing a screenshot by one of my favourite comedians, WKUK’s Trevor Moore (@itrevormoore). I figured it was worth signing up if I could get daily jokes from this guy, and boy was it ever. Immediately intrigued with all the different facets and aspects to the platform, I soon realized that most people weren’t using Twitter to its full potential. So if you’d like to change your twitter feed from a useless stream of boring updates and rants to a curated, evolving feed of inspiration and knowledge, listen up!
1. Cull Your ‘Personals’
Most people follow all 300 of their Facebook friends on Twitter and that makes for an impossible to read and hardly fascinating stream of content. I only follow two people I know personally on Twitter – my best friend and my brother. I don’t need consistently pointless updates from people I knew back in high school, and I don’t need to follow anybody who isn’t of the utmost importance to me. Keeping your ‘following’ list of personals to a bare minimum will do you a world of good.
2. Tap Into Your Interests
And only the ones you would appreciate regular posts from. Sure, I love Louis C.K., but his Twitter feed isn’t really for me as I can’t relate to his very noble campaign against standardized testing in schools or where in Manhattan he is performing on a given night. So, I don’t follow him. Just because you vaguely like someone or something doesn’t mean you have to covet their account into your list of follows. Having a very particular list will enable you to actually read what is posted, rather than missing 90% due to an overwhelming intake.
3. Quench Your Wanderlust
On the internet, you’re a citizen of the world, and your interactions aren’t limited by borders or green cards. I recommend finding the travel and tourism Twitter accounts for your dream destinations and enjoying the educational info and beautiful photo updates they have to offer. One of my faves is @IcelandNatural, as most of you know Sergey and I have a soft spot for Rekjavik. I’m also looking forward to spending some time living in Yukon this year, so I’ve been soaking up some interesting facts and pictures via @TravelYukon. But it’s still important to consistently review your list and unfollow anything you’ve lost interest in or no longer enjoy. If something on your feed constantly annoys you, it’s time to let it go.
4. Stay Inspired
Follow people in your field of interest or career whom you admire! I follow all the lovely ladies @Blogcademy, Darren Rowse @ProBlogger and a slew of individuals who regularly post encouraging and creative tweets: @RuPaul, @KandeeJohnson, @Disney, @NatalieIsPoetry, etc. Follow the feeds you can learn from and whom contribute their own work to the blogosphere (or whatever line of work you happen to be in/are looking to enter).
5. Curate What You Contribute
“Just woke up, so tired” isn’t something you would care to read, so why would you write it? Put your best self forward when it comes to your tweets and show the world what you’ve got. This can be supporting advice, inspirational quotes, hilarious jokes, links to your own recent work or the work of others whom you admire, and interactions with those you follow. The sky’s the limit! Spread positive vibes and you’ll receive them in return.
Instead of racking up your list of ‘favourites’, use them the same way as your Pinterest ‘likes’. Favourite tweets you want to save for later like articles, quotes, and links. Then un-favourite them! It’s a simple process that turns this Twitter feature into a useful tool for you rather than a means of mindless flattery for others.
Tweet me @FreeAndie.