How not to get sidetracked by social media

Whenever I sit down at my desk and boot the computer, I automatically open the email program to check my mails real quick and after that I start the browser to look for any notifications on Facebook and Instagram. Real quick.

Like that kind of thing could be done real quick!

Chances are, that two hours later I haven’t written a single word, but lost myself in stories and reels.

Becca Symes made an enlightening video about that phenomenon. Check it out if you want to know why this happens.

So to skip that track down this specific rabbit hole, I have come up with a solution that helps me to stay focused on my manuscript. I’m on a Windows PC and use LibreOffice to write my books and that’s what I can describe for you. But I suppose whatever OS and software you are on, there will be similar routes.

What I do is I set my computer to open my text processor with the current work in progress. That way the first thing I see on my screen are my words, not any distracting emails or messages. This is how it’s done:

Find the startup folder

Hold [Windows logo] + click R or click the Windows logo and type “run”

You should see this window now:

Type shell:startup and click OK. This will take you to this folder:

Create the shortcut

Right-click in that folder and pick New → Shortcut. Find your manuscript file and click OK.

Done. Next time you boot your computer it will automatically open your manuscript. The shortcut will make sure the file gets opened even though it’s in another folder, e.g. one that synchronizes with a cloud or backups automatically.

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