May 1st: De-Vicing

JoshLifestyle6 Comments

Have you ever heard yourself or someone else mention the phrase “everyone has their vices”. I know I have used it on many occasions in the past and for a long time I just assumed that's how things worked.

But what if it wasn't?

What if instead we focused our efforts on the idea of de-vicing our own lives? Today I thought about this concept a lot and I realized just how many vices (big and small) that I pay little to know attention towards, even though they're clearly affecting me in a negative way.

Here are some examples of vices that destroy productivity in my line of work:

  • Email (more than twice a day)
  • FaceBook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • Skype
  • Website analytics
  • Checking sales
  • Checking FaceBook likes
  • Checking the number of new Twitter followers
  • Reading unnecessary blog posts
  • Listening to podcasts
  • Making small web design tweaks

And that's just off the top of my head. If you were to estimate how much time you spend on these vices, what would you think the answer would be?

For me I gave a conservative estimate of 10 minutes per item. If this is true, (and it's likely it is) then I spend 120 minutes each day giving into my vices, instead of doing important work.

Therefore considering is it the first day of the month, I've decided to start a 30 day challenge focusing on de-vicing my life a little and only doing the important work. Here's the challenge I've set for myself:

  1. Checking (and replying to) emails once in the morning and once at night.
  2. Check website analytics once in the morning and once at night.
  3. Checking sales only at the end of each day (midnight US EST)
  4. Spend no more than 15 minutes on Twitter and Facebook at the end of the day(same as above)
  5. Turn off Skype unless I need to call someone.
  6. Cut out YouTube completely, unless there is a work related video.
  7. Read only one important blog post before going to bed.
  8. Listen to one important podcast before going to bed.
  9. And to make ZERO website changes (publishing new posts is an exception of course)

Here are nine opportunities to de-vice my work life and get more important work done. By putting this out there, I'm holding myself accountable to you guys, but more so to me. I know it's not going to be easy, but at least it's only 30 days. That I know I can do.

Are there any vices you would like to cut out of your life as well? If so, by all means you're more than welcome to join me on this challenge. I'll keep you all updated as the month progresses and please if you want to make yourself accountable, just drop a comment below with a list of items you would like to de-vice over the next 30 days.


  • This sounds like such a good idea. Would love to join you, I’m just not sure I have the will power.

    • Jill

      Hahaha I’m not sure if you’re being sarcastic or not

    • Come on man, I know you want too 😉 Haha

  • I can’t seem to cut all of these things out entirely; my thought process (especially when writing) is to do some thinking/writing then mull it over and let it process while on FB/Twitter, then go back and write some more etc. What I did do though was ruthlessly cull my inclusion in FB groups and subscriptions to blogs so as to reduce the amount of time I read updates that weren’t moving me forward. Also, when I find something interesting business-wise I bookmark it and put some room in my schedule to review it later. Then it has a legitimate place in my day. Good luck Josh!!

    • I remember doing that (culling a bunch of subscriptions) at the end of last year and it being one of the most freeing activities I have ever done. Great point Gillian!