If I’m not kept busy I seriously don’t know what to do with myself, I’m absolutely satisfied when able to tick things off my to-do list – yep, easily pleased. In all honestly that’s one of the main reasons running my blog alongside a full time job has worked so well. I’ve been doing it for three years now. I find the winter months the hardest to get through, so as we’re now in spring I thought it’s a good time to share a few tips that have helped me continue to run my blog while working full time. Also, I know everyones full time employment is different, so to give you a bit of context I leave the house at around 8 and get home around 5.45, Monday to Friday, so weekends and the time either side of that are what I have to play with.
One thing I’ve found this past year is that I’m so productive in the mornings. I love having an hour before work to get on with things like replying to comments, thinking of content ideas or editing the blog photos I took the weekend before. I would say between 6am-7am is my most productive hour no matter what I’m working on. After work I can just about squeeze an hour or so in for anything blog related, but that’s it (apart from the odd time I’ll write a blog post sat on the sofa with GBBO in the background). It doesn’t work for me to sit at my desk all night after doing the same in work all day, especially as I work in marketing. I figured this out by just noticing when I want to blog, and I’ve just stuck with it and it’s become a part of my routine.
Having said that, I do think having a bit of self-love is key. I’m not going to beat myself up if one morning I fancy a little longer in bed, or get sucked into watching tv with my breakfast before work. Balance is everything, and as much as I want my blog to flourish, I also have a career outside of that I’m trying to grow too!
If being organised comes naturally to you then I can’t lie, I’m bloody jealous. There have been so many times that my lack of organisation has let me down (I’ve been out to shoot content WITHOUT my camera more than once…). I’ve realised EVERYTHINGGGG counts when you’re limited on time. I’ve started making checklists for YouTube videos, all of the camera equipment I need if I’m going out to take photos, basically anything that requires me to have things ready for a certain time, I’ve got a checklist. Another thing that’s helped me is keeping a monthly calendar. I write down absolutely everything even if it’s not blog related and just by quickly scanning I can see where I have the time to do things and where I don’t.
For me the main thing is keeping on top of things and working on my blog/ YouTube or Instagram every single day, that way I chip away at it slowly and it just feels more manageable to me. If I arrive at work even 15 minutes early I’ll quickly reply to an email or two, or reply to Instagram comments while I have the chance. I know people are banging on about Marie Kondo, but I’ve got to say she’s kind of right. Having an organised work space and a proper home for everything saves so much time for me too, and it’s something I’ve started to full embrace (honestly you should see the amount of stuff I’ve took to the charity shop since January…).
At the moment I have a week off work with not that much to do, and because I have quite a lot of bit of time on my hands and no urgency to get shit done, I’m scrolling facebook and being unproductive rather than actually doing something of use. I’ve always been like this, and I’ve found actually I’m most productive in a coffee shop or environment where everyone else is working. When I’m surrounded by other people it gives me the push I need to actually crack on, whereas at home there’s always 10 other things I could be doing.
My phone is another thing that’s a massive hinderance on my productivity. I’ll reply to a text then before I know it I’m scrolling through Kylie Jenners best friends aunties dogs instagram account (yep, that’s the first thing that came into my head), I’ve started leaving my phone in another room or sticking it on airplane mode if I’ve got a tight deadline and really need to smash through it, that way I have no distractions.
Read more: 5 Tips for a More Productive Day
The comparison bug definitely comes and goes for me, and sometimes I think it affects me without even realising. I just try to remember that everyone’s situation is different, and the only way to improve is by looking at my own work and understanding what I can do better. I think another thing that comes with this is staying true to myself, an example of this for me is IGTV/ styling videos trend on Instagram. I love style and creating fashion content but I know that those videos aren’t something I want to create, so I’m simply not going to do them. It sounds obvious but in this industry it’s easy to do things just because you’ve seen someone else do it, it quickly gets boring trying to be something you’re not.
I’m in a fortunate position where my blogging isn’t my full time job. I have no pressure to earn and I’m able to turn down paid work if it doesn’t sit right with me, I create content simply because I enjoy it and comparing it to others quickly takes that away. As I said, I think it’s just one of those things that comes and goes, but self belief is all you need (and a laptop, phone, editing apps… But that’s a blog post for another day)
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to blogging, or how you want to manage it alongside everything else. It’s what works best for you and my main feeling with it all is that I’ll continue doing it while it feels enjoyable. One thing I really want to think about more is my focus, at the minute I’m juggling my blog, YouTube and Instagram so I do feel like things are falling behind (believe it or not on the weekends and evenings I quite like socialising with real life friends too). I guess it’s all about balance, managing time and prioritising, with lots of coffee thrown in too.
How do you manage working alongside blogging?
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