Thursday 11 June 2015

Don't Be A Clown: Juggling Blogging and A Full Time Job | Lifestyle


So as you can see from my last publish date I have been neglecting my little hub on the Internet for a little while now and haven’t posted in what seems like AGES! Truthfully this was down to two reasons. 

Firstly, I know I haven’t been blogging for long now (I started earlier this year) but I already found myself in a bit of a rut. I had a bit of a battle with myself about what direction I wanted to take my blog in. Have you ever had that? So instead of just posting for the sake of posting I thought a little break would do me good and ignite my passion for blogging again. And it has!

Secondly, I have been SO busy. Things at work have become a little hectic so gone are the days where I can find a cheeky little gap in my work day to find time to draft a blogpost and check out other bloggers. My hectic work day (you can find out more about what i do here) has made me feel so lazy and tired so by the time I get home all I want to do is eat, shower, wack on my PJs and watch Big Brother (#dontjudgeme). This leaves no time for blogging!

So now the light has been re-sparked and I’m getting back in my swing I thought I’d share some of my tips (which I'm going to be using myself) to juggle a full time job and blogging.

1.       Time Management 
Yeap, the cliché piece of advice. I know you've heard this a million times but I cannot stress how important it is to manage your time and prioritise your time. Why not set a mini schedule for yourself? Plan for the days you want to write posts and days to take your photos/visuals. This way you won’t feel overwhelmed after a long day at work. Also, make use of your weekends. I used to be so bad at this. My Saturdays are usually booked as my “social” days so I don’t usually have time for writing, so I need to start using my Sundays more proactively – even if that means spending my Sunday morning taking visuals and photos for the follow week’s posts.

Time is your biggest commodity. Make sure you use it wisely!

2.       Planner
Get organised. The way you do this is entirely up to you but make sure you do it. Some people prefer making use of the technology around us and setting up a mobile schedule or reminders to get certain things done, whilst others prefer the good old notebook and pen method. Personally, iphone reminders never work well for me. For some reason my phone doesn't register them as real and pressing the dismiss button has become the procrastinator-in-me’s dream! The method I like to plan my blog  posts is a mixture between jotting down post ideas in a notebook and using a blog planner template. I’ve used a few templates in the past and I am a huge fan. 
So much so that I’m actually designing my dream template at the moment. Once it’s complete I’d be more than happy to share it with you guys, so let me know if you’re interested. Planner templates are great because the headings and sections ensure you haven’t forgotten anything and allow you to make sure all the aspects from writing the post to promotion are covered.

3.       Notes
Have you ever been minding your own business throughout the day and get a burst of creativity and an amazing blog post idea pops out of nowhere? You are adamant this is going to be great, but a few hours (/days) letter you sit down to write and its gone. You have lost all track of what your brilliant idea was and you are now staring into your computer bashing your head hoping it resurfaces? The easiest and simplest way to avoid this is to just make notes throughout the day. Again, either carry a small notepad in your bag for ideas or utilise the notes application on your phone. This not only keeps track of your thoughts, it also speeds up your writing process.

4.       Preparation
So now you know what you’re going to write. You have great post ideas. You know your rough time frame of when you want to get this content out there so now do the prep to make sure it’s out there in time. For me the longest and most time consuming part of any blog post are the visuals. They seem to take me ages to master. I have no photography knowledge and I don’t own one of them “#YouKnowI’mABloggerBecauseIHaveOne” Cannon cameras (I use my iphone), so getting the lighting and angles right just take up so much time. You can’t even imagine how many draft posts I have backlogged on my account but I just haven’t posted them because I cant find time to take the visuals. But now I’ve found a solution, I set aside a specific time to take photos (like mentioned above, it’s Sunday mornings) which leaves me time during the week to perfect my content and get it out to the world.

5.       Schedule posts 
I use blogger to upload my blog posts so it’s ability to schedule a post is a godsend to me! I’m pretty sure Wordpress has a similar application so use it! Sites like hootsuite and futuretweets also are great at helping you schedule your social media posts too, so if you spend a few hours a week scheduling your blog and social media posts you can spend more time making content (or watching big brother?) Scheduling posts is a great way to make sure your posts are being published at a regular rate and takes the headache away from having to rush home in time to grab that optimised publishing time. Talking of choosing your publish time, things like that actually matter! When scheduling a post, do a little research about when your target audience are most likely to be active online. The easiest way to do this to think about when you are online yourself. For me it’s often in the morning before work, during my lunch break and right before bed. (And sometimes during work but don’t tell my manager that). 

So there you have it, the blogger laws im planning on following myself! Hope you found this useful. I'd love to hear more about some of your tips and how you manage full time work and blogging! Please hit me up on twitter or leave a comment below.


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