Matt Forney
Spread the Word!

Practicing Online Hygiene

A few days ago, I did a total redesign of the blog, because I got sick of staring at my old template. It’s necessary to shake things up in your life every so often, keep you from falling into a rut of complacency. This redesign required me to make a few big changes.

Including trimming the blogroll.

Right now, the only sites on my blogroll are either my own or written by people that a) I know in real life and/or b) work/chat with extensively online. Everyone else appears on this separate page, linked at the very end of the roll. If you used to be on my blogroll but aren’t anymore, don’t take it personally; I had to do it to make the site load faster. That said, if we ever meet in real life, you’ll be moved back to the front page.

At the same time I implemented a new site design, I decided to take my own advice and go on a severe information diet. I had accumulated way too many subscriptions in my Google Reader and was following way too many people on Twitter. I wasn’t even reading two-thirds of the articles on the sites I was following, so what was the point of clicking through their RSS feeds every day?

As a result, I dumped most of the crap in my Reader and unfollowed something like a hundred Twitter accounts.

The people/sites that are left are ones that I get value from, either because they provide important info, entertain me or both. I don’t even bother paying attention to the local news, aside from listening to talk radio in the morning.

I used to believe in linking/plugging everyone who linked back to my blog or otherwise enjoyed my work; in fact, I used to urge other bloggers to do the same. While a certain amount of backscratching is necessary to succeed in the hustle, I’ve decided to be more selective in who I associate with online, by applying this simple test:

Would I hang out with someone like this in real life?

If the answer is no, then I don’t “hang out” with them online.

I used to read a diverse panoply of writers: HBD enthusiasts, white nationalists, men’s rights activists and the like. I don’t anymore. Reading negative or hater sites wears on you mentally, puts you in a bad frame of mind, and affects how you look at the world. It doesn’t matter whether the blogger is right; I don’t need to read writers that do nothing but reinforce my already existing biases.

Put simply, if you associate with losers, you will become a loser.

I’m striving to be a winner, so I only associate with other winners. If I link to your blog or website, it’s because you’re a winner with something valuable to impart to the world. Treat your online life as an extension of your real one if you want it to be of any use to you.

Read Next: Confessions of an Online Hustler