A few weeks ago I decided I needed to be more productive with my work and how to stop social media being a distraction, I even wrote a post about it last week – 5 Step Plan for Organising your Social Media Usage.

One of the time saving tips I didn’t mention was RSS, which stands for Really Simple Syndication.  It’s something I implemented myself a few months ago and it is saving so much time I needed to let you all know.

What is RSS?

If you’re not sure what RSS is or what is does, What is RSS? is a simple explanation from one of my favourite blogger’s Darren Rowse of ProBlogger and this video below is a quick overview if you’d rather not read the whole article.

This explains it really well and will also help you set-up RSS, but I want to explain how I use RSS – in my email software (Outlook).

I follow a number of blogs, it increases all the time when I come across more and more great content.  There is no way in the world that I would be able to physically visit all these blogs each day to check for new posts, which means I could potentially miss some useful content.  So when I come across a great blog I subscribe by RSS and add it to Google Reader.

I can access Google Reader wherever I am so I can even check my blogs subscriptions on the move.  But what I really love about it is I can import my RSS feeds into Outlook and I can check them as I would emails (check the Help section of Google Reader for instructions).  It’s become part of my morning routine, I check my emails and then check my blog subscriptions.

Skim Read

I can quickly scroll down the various new posts and see if there are any that I’d like to read.  I generally skim read the posts that catch my eye (a tip in my post Reading List Overwhelming You? 6 Tips That Will Help!) and if it looks like I would benefit from reading it properly I assign a category colour to it which I’ve called ‘To Read’.  I can then go back to the posts I want to read properly when I get the time.

To get you started here are some of the blogs I subscribe to via RSS and of course you can also subscribe to my blog via RSS too.

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