Blogging 101: Finding Time to Blog
Finding time is all about priorities
As an entrepreneur, there are never enough hours in the day. My priorities involve working on client projects and creating products, developing marketing plans and finding affiliate opportunities, and scrambling to stay on top of my budget spreadsheet, paying the bills, making sure all 6 cats get fed, and keeping a household running. I know many of you face multiple obstacles when it comes to finding time to write. Whether you work a 9-to-5, have kids with busy calendars, are caregivers for aging parents — or all of the above plus some — it’s just so easy to let everything else take priority over writing a blog post. But basically it comes down to this: Blogging is either important to you or it’s not.
Assuming it is important to you, experiment with different methods of carving out time and find one that works for you. The concept of blocking out time on your calendar can be quite effective. Simply put, you make an appointment with yourself. Maybe it means brown-bagging it and using your lunch hour to blog. It could mean getting up an hour early or staying up an hour after your family goes to bed. I have personally found it difficult to carve out an entire hour, so for me “chunking” works better. When I’m able to steal 5 or 10 minutes, I write a paragraph or I locate images or I find affiliate links. Little by little, my blog post comes together.
Making it countThe next issue is, when you finally succeed at finding time to write, whether it’s in small chunks or an entire precious hour, you have to be ready to hit the ground running. Nothing is more frustrating than finally getting the opportunity to create a blog post and finding yourself staring at a blinking cursor on a blank page, clueless about a topic for your post. So, have a ready supply of blog post ideas at all times. Make the collection of post ideas a routine part of your day. I spend most of my day at my computer, so when inspiration hits, I will often just quickly jump into WordPress and create a draft post, even if it’s only a title or a link to an article I want to reference later. You can make notes on your phone, keep a list in your Alexa app, or keep a notebook with you. If inspiration tends to strike when you’re in the shower, invest in a Shower Idea Whiteboard or a waterproof notepad.
Mark your calendarBeyond making — and keeping — an appointment with yourself, you may find it useful to create an editorial calendar. Whether or not this is a tool that will work for you depends to some extent on what type of blog you have. For example, one of the three blogs I write is a political blog, and in the world of politics, events move much too fast for an editorial calendar to be useful. But for some types of blogs, an editorial calendar is not only useful for ensuring that you post regularly, but it can also help you generate ideas. For example, there is some sort of observance for every day, week, and month — National Hot Dog Day, World Kindness Week, or Toilet Tank Repair Month. Use a list of these observances for those times when inspiration is running low.
Don’t overthink it. Yes, you have schedules to keep. But a lot of what we prioritize in our lives can actually wait. If you don’t get that load of laundry in, pull something out of your closet you haven’t worn in ages. It’s okay if dinner is a frozen pizza once in a while. As I observed in a recent blog post on The Beach Memo, a lot of the pressure we feel is pressure we put on ourselves. Get your priorities straight and the rest will work itself out.