I've just finished interning at a marketing company and working full-time hours. I'm so enjoying these lay-ins, and I'm also looking forward to having more time to focus on my blog. Working and blogging is doable, but there's no getting around the fact that it's tough.
I'll admit, I found the first couple of weeks difficult and I didn't blog at all. With any new job, there is a lot to learn, but this was also in my not very strong second language and I had long commutes. I was exhausted. But I fell into a routine quite quickly and after 2 weeks I decided I did want to carry on blogging, though I told myself I wouldn't push myself and only post what I could manage.
But then this is me we're talking about. A bad habit of mine is pushing myself too much, but let's not get started on that one. Anyway, I decided I wasn't happy with my blog and if I wanted to get my blog to where I wanted it to be I would have to put more effort in. Except I had less time to do that.
Blogging and working full time is all about time management. Here are some tips how I helped to manage to grow my blog alongside working a full-time job:
I used to get so much blogging done on a commute. This post was mostly written on a commute! My train journeys were long so I had a good 40 minutes of uninterrupted writing time which is more than enough for me to write a post. Sometimes I brought my laptop to edit photos or make the graphics for a post. Sometimes I just used the time to let my mind wander and come up with post ideas.
Plan Time For Blogging
When you don't have as much time for blogging, scheduling in time to spend on your blog makes it much more likely you will actually do it. I write down Twitter chats in my bullet journal and had a realistic to-do list to work through in the evening. Sometimes I scheduled a day of the weekend to just get a load of stuff done.
Taking Time Off Is Just As Important
Blogging isn't my job, it's my hobby, and though I enjoy doing it there is undoubtedly times when it can feel like a second job. Taking time to switch off from blogging will help you to avoid burnout. I always have at least one evening a week where I don't touch my blog or even Twitter, and if I'm having the weekend off then I plan for that to make sure I'm not worrying while I'm away from screens.
Scheduling Is Your Best Friend
Plan, plan, plan. Plan what posts you'll do at the weekend, write them if you know you won't have enough time in the week, take the photos if you know you won't have the daylight in the evenings. Schedule them. Schedule tweets for when you're at work so your timeline isn't quiet all day. When you're working, you can't sit on social media all day so you have to become familiar with scheduling tools and how best to schedule content. I use Buffer and occasionally Tweetdeck to schedule tweets.
This follows on from my previous point. Staying on top of things is key, planning content in advance is not easy. Having a to-do list will mean you won't forget anything and you're super productive when it comes to sitting down and blogging. I used this spreadsheet which helped me so much when I was working, as it allowed me to plan a schedule and see what I still needed to do.
Are these tips useful? How do you cope with working and blogging?
Shoutout here to those humble and seriously talented bloggers who manage to successfully blog and work full time, part time or study and who make it seem effortless.