When it comes to blogging the hardest thing for me is sticking to a schedule. I start off with all good intentions and then life usually gets in the way. However, I’ve found that over the last 2 years a clearly set out schedule and plan helps me keep on track and focused. Many people use notebooks and diaries to keep their schedule, however due to me always swapping and changing mine around I make such a mess of paper based ones. Because of this the blog notebooks that I do have are usually always Notebooks from The Works as they’re fashionable and functional yet don’t cost the earth. My favoured method of scheduling is using my Blog Domination tracker, but I always love to have a few notepads or diaries at the side of my computer and laptop to jot down post ideas or items I need to sort for a photo session.
When trying to get on track with a schedule and planning you need to commit to it, it’s so easy to get pulled off track ot set yourself unrealistic targets (yeah I do that all the time). Here are some things I have learned whilst using schedules on a serious level.
What’s your Aim?
Do you want to be more organised? Have a log of what needs to be done? Just want somewhere to record posts that are ready to go? Before setting out to make a schedule it’s a great idea to think what you want it for, as there’s no use having an all singing and dancing set up if you only want it for 1 purpose, and if anything that’ll discourage you from using it.
Plan, Plan, Plan
I plan out nearly every aspect of my blog, however I know that might seem like overkill to some. I have a notebook for my blog photo sessions which detail what images I need to take for upcoming posts and what items need to be in those images. That way I can take my notebook to my beauty desk and pick all the products needed and I won’t forget any. I also plan out my schedule on a spreadsheet, but using a diary and some cute stationery seems to be what most people prefer. It’s all about finding what works for you; for me it’s a mix of traditional and technology. I want notebooks for ideas and on the go, but a spreadsheet for my weekly ‘sit down and plan some content’ moments.
Set a Daily Goal
Recently I have been finding myself falling in to a blogging slump, mostly as my life is so busy at the moment that finding the motivation to blog is hard. Taking a blogging break isn’t a bad thing, and if anything it can recharge your batteries. I find setting myself little daily goals helps to keep me motivated, or at least keeps me in the world of blogging a little. Having a notebook with some daily goals in helps to keep me focused, and they don’t have to be major things, just simple ones like comment on 3 blog posts, reply to 10 people’s tweets, etc.
Have a Backup Plan
Even the most well put together schedule and plan will go out of the window sometimes – a weekly occurrence for me. And in times like this it’s always a good idea to have some post ready to publish in case you haven’t been able to write the one you planned. Also, I don’t mean brand spanking new posts, but old ones that you have tweaked… I have been blogging 4 years now, and I can guarantee no one has read every single post (except me), so being able to take an old post and reuse it is a great use of your time, as new eyes will see it and you can change up the post to suit your current style without using too much time and effort.
It’s always key to remember that a plan and schedule are there to help and guide you, and are not set in stone so don’t get downhearted if you don’t stick to it. And whether you’re all about the pretty notebooks, sparkly gel pens or a spreadsheet just remember to keep it you and keep it fun.