I am one of the few souls on Earth who enjoys being ridiculously busy and always having fifty million things to do. A few of my jobs include…
- Wife to Timothy. All wives know all of the things this entails! Cleaning, grocery shopping, laundry, meals, packing lunches, making sure bae has everything together.
- Dog mom to Gatsby, my doxador. This job includes games of fetch, walks, belly rubs and snuggles. I’m blessed with a pretty low maintenance dog, she loves to lay beside me and sleep/snuggle while I work.
- Full-time state employee. Yes, I work a normal 9-5 job! I’ve been a social media coordinator with the state for two and a half years. They pay the bills and grad school and I work with an awesome group of people.
- Part-time Grad Student. I’m currently on a slow track to get my Masters in Corporate Communications at Austin Peay State University.
- Full-time Blogger. I am always actively blogging and networking. I blog three times a week and have at least 20 drafts in my queue right now! I’m constantly thinking of content that I think my readers would enjoy.
- Full-time Small Business Owner. If you hear me talk a lot about shopping local, it’s because I’m a small business owner! I own the online based Five Sparrows Boutique. My husband does the business side while I do all the social media and buying.
Last year I was consumed with all of these things and felt like I was constantly struggling to stay organized, meet deadlines and remember everything I needed to do. I had no time for family, my husband and friends. If I did try to stop working and hang out, my nose was buried in my iPhone responding to emails and staying on top of my social media sites. I also had trouble sleeping at night with my head full of everything to do, I’d wake up in the middle of the night and be right back on my phone trying to catch-up or stay on top of work. This is clearly unhealth and unacceptable so I decided to make a change.
If you’re like me and blog while you have 50 other things you do, I have a few tips that might help.
- Make a schedule – The cute planners weren’t enough for me. I needed to see my whole month and write what I wanted to post on which day. I also committed to posting consistently on Sunday, Wednesday and Friday at 8 a.m. Central. This helped know what to prepare for the week ahead and what to start thinking about in the coming days before I write a post. See I scheduled today’s post on the 20th!
- Dedicate a day to blogging – Saturday is my blogging day. My husband and I get up, grab breakfast and scout locations for photos. Once we have three locations, I go home and get my outfits together. Once I have tried on and accessorized my looks, I pack it all up and take it with me. From there my photographer and I will do three different sets of photos. While I hate changing in a car, it forces me to get everything done in one day. Once that’s done, I’ll go home and edit the photos, upload them to WordPress and resize them. I usually do this while watching a movie or catching up on a TV show. Or this time of year, watch football or hockey!
- WordPress is your best friend – WordPress is great and allows you to schedule posts that also link to your social media accounts. I write up all my posts on Saturday, link them to similar or the actual pieces, do a short write-up, spell check, proof-read and schedule. I do usually proof read my posts and check the links a day before scheduled as well. If you link your social media accounts, WordPress will let you do a short blurb of what you want to say on your social media pages. This has been a lifesaver! Before I would either forget to post on my Facebook and Twitter pages or spend forever posting individually on each site.
- Don’t forget about HootSuite – My online stores social media accounts run on HootSuite. Sunday afternoon I take an hour, usually after church, and get all of my Facebook, Twitter and Instagram posts ready for the week. I do features, sales, giveaways, blogger spotlights, you name it. Then I set everything up for the next couple of days, hit schedule and don’t think another thing about it.
- Make a checklist, but not on your phone – Is it just me or is it easier to follow a checklist after you write it on paper? It’s so satisfying to cross it off! I tried doing checklists on my phone and would either forget about it or not actively look for it. If a piece of paper is in front of me I read it and it stays on my mind to complete the task.
- Make time for Family and Friends – I enjoy the occasional spontaneity, but I found that if I was a little too spontaneous it threw off my schedule. So as strange as it sounds, I mark off my calendar and make a special time for family and friends. When I do this I don’t unintentionally schedule something else like a meeting, conference call or other activity, I make it a point to have time just hanging out with my husband, family and friends.
- Power Off – This is the hardest for me since I sleep with my phone next to my bed. I used to fall asleep looking at Instagram or doing research on trends for the store. I’d literally fall asleep in bed with my phone in hand. One of my goals for 2016 is to cut-off my phone by 9 p.m. No social media or internet! Read a book, do a devotion, think about your day, pray, talk with your husband. Just rest and be.
I’ve only been blogging seriously for about a year but these are a few tips that have really helped! If you have any tips that have helped you with juggling life and blogging leave it in a comment below!