I have a pinterest account, and I love it. It has helped me come up with last minute party favors, homeschool ideas, get more organized, and even put a fast dinner on the table from time to time. Pinterest is a great way to network your blog, save things for future reference, and curate current favorites. But, lets face it…it is the Bermuda triangle of productivity. I can be off/on my facebook account in 5 minutes no problem and without effort…but pinterest–an endless treasure trove of beautiful things, great ideas, and pretty places…it used to suck me in for millenniums! And I noticed something that made me sad: that time I used to spend crafting; I was now using to look at other people’s crafting. So I made a few changes to the way I do pinterest.
Please note, this is not the way to drive traffic to your site via pinterest or how to use pinterest to your advantage if you are a blogger; there are lots of people who have already written wonderful articles on that and I will be sharing my own tips for doing just that in a later post. This is the five ways I started using pinterest in an effort to save more time for being creative…more time crafting and less time curating!
1. I limit my pinning time each day I go on there.
When I realized I was doing way more pinning that creating, I decided to limit my time to 15 min a day, which I decided that for me was enough time to like, share or repin things of relevance to my Pinterest boards without being sucked into an hour of “I will do this….someday”. I decided my somedays needed to become todays. This also made me feel better about a promise I had made to myself at the beginning of 2014 about being more in the moment with my kids and not always telling them we would do things “later”. Funny thing, when I quit spending that time on pinterest, I started cross stitching, sewing, and papercrafting again. My kids saw me actually BEING creative and not coveting other peoples creative endeavors.
Maybe a 30 min. limit is a great cut back for you; maybe an every other day instead of every day will be your plan. Whatever your time budget, figure out how much time you are spending on pinterest versus how much time you are actually doing those crafts or cooking those recipes (or doing those homeschool projects) and then reverse that ratio accordingly to swing in the doing/cooking/create column’s favor.
2. I decided to be a careful curator.
I reminded myself that my pinterest account essentially was for me…to make my life easier by helping me be able to find ideas, activities and information that I found useful and therefore chose to save for future reference. For me personally, if I have a board with 2,000 pins I will never be able to find something again. So I am a careful curator. I only pin things I truly love and resist the urge to get click/pin happy when I am on there. Be discriminating in your pinning.
3. I keep a “working board”.
I keep it at the bottom of all my other boards, it is (very generically) called “for me”. It is where I pin those ideas/activities/or articles I want to read or do in the immediate future or need for a go-to reference. I have a few essential beginning knitters reference pins there right now. I pinned them to my Knitting board also, but these things I am going to be using in the next 2-4 weeks. They are on a board that has less than 10 pins at all times making them super easy to access. When they are no longer essential; I delete them from this “working board”. You could also have your working board be private so you are the only one who sees it. I utilize private working boards often when I am curating ideas for parties we are throwing.
4. I search my current boards for ideas more than searching pinterest for new ones.
I currently have more ideas pinned than I could ever do. If I already pinned it, then chances are it was because it peaked my interest or I thought it was a good idea. So lots of times, instead of searching “crochet” boards; I will go to my own crochet board to see what project is already pinned there that I can start on.
5. I have organized my boards to a system that suits me.
I currently have about 53 boards on pinterest. That is a lot to some and not very many to others. I separate things based on my needs, so for example, I have separate boards for crochet, Tunisian crochet, and knitting, but my papercrafts board is all papercrafts rolled into one.
6. I have a board called “Blogs I love” and a board called “Etsy shops I love”.
This makes my go to favorites easy to find and in one place. It also enables me to share the blogs and shops I love with those who follow me on pinterest. This is especially helpful when I want to support Etsy artisans when doing shopping or looking for a good read. This is separate than my blog roll on my blog or google plus pages. These are my very favorites and the ones I read/visit regularly.
I will share in another post how I use pinterest to drive traffic to my two blogs, as it is my number one referral source, but in the end, my pinterest account is where I love to curate what I love but with the driving motivator to be to have those ideas in a place where I can do them later. I love crafting much more than I love surfing the Internet and that includes pinterest. I have a much happier heart now that I am crafting more and curating less!
How do you use pinterest?