This topic is something I personally have been really struggling with recently. As I write this I am in the passenger seat of my boyfriend’s car typing away in Microsoft Word, en route up north to visit my family. Tonight I have a flight to Zante for my best friend’s wedding on Tuesday. Wednesday morning I will fly back for wedding three up in the Yorkshire Dales. At the end of the week I have a photoshoot in Richmond. My diary, is pretty hectic to say the least. Wedding one by the way, was last night, and I am very tired.
I was supposed to have had this Sunday Musings post written and scheduled last week, along with posts for every single day of the week over next week, whilst I am away.
Unfortunately, this just did not go to plan. To say I have been stressing over this would be an understatement.
I honestly thought I had organisation down, or at least I thought I was getting better at it. Earlier this month I set out a Blogging Schedule for all of August. For each day I had planned a post, for the majority of which I have already taken photographs for. I even had a list of ideas of content for September, and had started planning posts for the upcoming month.
This is my downfall. I love a list. However, what is the point in list making if you never work your way through it? I need to reign in my list making and actually get on with the work in mind.
I came across a blog post by Media Marmalade, yesterday in fact, regarding working full time and managing a blog. I found it really helpful; click here, to see what I am talking about. It got me thinking about the ways I manage my own full time job as well as my blog…
What I have learned along the way are these little tips:
Use your weekends wisely – Make time to socialise, and let your hair down after a hard week at work, but also keep aside a couple of hours to get all your blog photos done in bulk. It saves me so much time getting a batch of product shots done in an afternoon, rather than doing them sporadically throughout the week.
Make use of folders – On my laptop I have a To Edit Folder and an Edited Folder. Inside the Edited Folder I have individual folders titled accordingly to the product photography inside. I also have an Archive folder of past blog photos. I like to keep on top of this so I can see how much editing I have to do and how many posts I need to schedule.
Blogger Scheduling: I draft up all the titles of my post and scribble down a date for when I plan to set these posts live. Having a list of “Drafts” is a constant reminder of how much work I have to do and if the list ever runs dry I know when I need to start brain storming.
Photoshop – I edit all of my photos using Photoshop CS6 Extended. I have got a certain flow down now when it comes to editing, but as it is something I love, I sometimes get carried away with it. I have had to learn to limit myself on editing time. I also make sure I only have Photoshop open when editing, so that I do not browse the internet opening further distractions. On a side note here, if you would like to see a Photography tips post or a post on editing do let me know!
Emails – I try and respond to an email as soon as it falls into my Inbox, as soon as I have replied, I move this email into a Blogging folder. I have OCD so if I don’t move important emails into folders I end up accidentally trashing things. Keep on top of your emails, this is important, as it helps you to build stronger relationships with PR & readers.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help – This is something I should have done. I recently wrote a guest post for the lovely Liza from Glam Beautys, as she was away on holiday with her family. Thinking about it, I should have asked other bloggers if they would like the opportunity to write a post on my blog. This would have taken the pressure of creating content in time off me as others would have helped.
My boyfriend is a photographer & Photoshop wiz. He can see when I am struggling and will offer to help take photographs for me and then edit them straight away so I don’t have to worry about anything. He even helps come up with ideas for my blog too.
Friends can also be a great source for help, sometimes I struggle with coming up with titles for my posts and my friend Megan from Wonderful You is someone I can lean on when I have writer’s block. She is actually pretty fabulous with all other blog advice too actually.
What I need to improve:
Time Management: This is something I think you can always work on. I need to start getting up earlier and making the most of my mornings. On the days I have done this I have been able to maintain posting daily.
Balance: Getting up early, may all be well and good, but if I am burning the candle at both ends, and forgetting important things like breakfast, it is only going to end up in a big fat mess.
Priorities: As I love editing and photography so much, I end up unnecessarily taking photographs before I need to, when in my drafts are important posts that need to be put live. This will come in time I think.
Sleep: I either sleep too much or I am too tired, having zero energy, resulting in me being so unproductive. This causes a downward spiral of stress, feeling lethargic and not only does my blog suffer but it has a roll on effect to everything else going on.
I really do admire those that work full time and have this blogging thaang down to a tea, because it is not ruddy easy. Being organised does not come naturally to me, but this blog is my passion and the only way I can keep creating great content and continuing to work hard during my day job, is by giving myself a kick up the backside.
Let me know your thoughts on tips on this topic, I would love to hear from you.