Statistics have always been there. Whether they are honest or not is a different story, but they’ve existed and slowly fed a little something I like to call stats addiction. Whether you’re a blogger, a published writer, a business owner, a gamer … stats addiction comes with the territory. There’s something mesmerizing about watching these numbers rise and fall. When you notice an increase you feel happy, but your spirits sink when there’s a decrease.
Bloggers are always anxious about increasing their page views are trying to figure out what could be done to prevent them from being too close to the x-axis, business owners lament when their monthly clientele decreases, gamers don’t like it when their ranks are lowered, whereas writers observe their sale ranks and reviews like hawks (of course I’m just speaking about myself ;) ). As a stats addict who’s trying to reform, I guess I need to answer one question: what’s the point?
Sure the graphs are pretty and the numbers are pretty interesting, but beyond that, what can we get out of them? I can’t count the number of times I refresh my stats during the day, or the times I visit my venues to see if someone has purchased a copy of my book. Isn’t that a waste of time? What does observing stats do for me? Think of the things you could do when you’re not constantly hitting the refresh button. You could:
- Catch up on your favourite blogs or discover new ones.
- Get some work done.
- Write a blog maybe? (hey I’m writing a blog post about it, so I guess it’s not so bad!)
- More importantly… work on your novel that’s suffering terribly in favour of these stats (this I’m guilty of).
These days I’m trying to limit myself. Instead of checking my blog stats every half an hour, I’m cutting down to three or four times a day. Instead of checking my sales, number of people who added my book to their To-Read list and reviews every hour, I’m cutting down to two times – one at the beginning of the day and one before I sleep. That sounds reasonable, right? You can’t take someone’s coffee or chocolate right away, can you? You’d crash them! *totally not trying to convince herself that it’s still too much*
I still do have moments of weakness, but I’m slowly getting better. Maybe some penalties will make me think twice before checking those stats!
I’ve come clean, but how about you? Do you suffer from stats addiction?