Here are a few that come to mind:
Checking it every hour or so isn’t as terrible as people make it out to be (usually, on Twitter). It’s a breather in between shipping some code or in between calls.
And I feel more tuned into my industry, my peers, and the markets I’m interested in.
TV and movies
In the evenings, this helps my brain settle down after firing on all cylinders during the work day.
Plus, I think we’re in a golden age of storytelling on this medium. You’re missing out if you impose a “no TV” rule.
World news and politics
Just because you run a business doesn’t mean you shouldn’t care about the world we live in and the people we elect as leaders.
Have a point of view. Keep it informed. Try to understand people who don’t agree with you.
I don’t know a single founder who experienced “overnight success”. We know every venture takes a looong time to build to fruition.
Burnout can set in a lot faster. Occasional side projects prevent that and often bear fruit themselves.
Building an audience
It’s a plant that grows ever so slowly, but only if you keep watering it. Putting out personal content, consistently, is extra, distracting work. So most founders don’t.
For the few that do, things seem to click much more easily (eventually).
Extra trips away
Traveling far distances for face time at tiny conferences, or solo retreats to think in a new environment. Is it worth the effort and expense?
It is. Your emails and projects will have to wait. But you’ll unlock new ways of looking at things, and that can open all sorts of new doors.
Checking email frequently
Flaky, out of touch, hard to get a hold of. These are things I never want to be known for.
I protect my deep work sessions, of course. But people who need things from me get answers in <1 business day. Period.
Sometimes no-reply is my answer.
The bottom line
If these things actually prevent you from accomplishing the things you think you want to accomplish, I’d suggest rethinking what you actually want.
What do you think? Let me know on the Twitter thread