Raise your hand if you have a blog.
Raise your hand if you have a blog and a full-time job.
Raise your hand if you’ve ever felt stressed out or overwhelmed trying to keep up in the blogging world (post regularly, comment on other blogs, reply to comments, tweet, instagram, share, etc.) when things are busy in your “real” life.
Is your hand still raised? Ok, then this post is for you!
I’ve been blogging for almost a year and a half now and while I love it, it’s a big challenge to keep up. Hitting publish on a regular basis is only half the battle. Once a post is up, you have constant interaction with your readers, other bloggers, social media, and more. It can be incredibly time consuming and if you’re like me, I’ve got a whoooole other list of things that need to get done in a regular work day!
I leave my house at 7:15 AM to commute to work and typically don’t get home until 6:00 PM. That’s nearly 11 hours a day that I’m gone, committed to working my full time job. I don’t have any aspirations to become a full-time blogger because I love my actual career. By the end of the work day, though, I’m already pretty stressed from the day.
Yeah. So stressed I bite my computer. Just kidding, but I had to throw that picture in because it’s so ridiculous. Thanks for the laugh, Google Images.
In addition to my job, I also carve out time for working out, friends, Riley, and relaxing. Rather than become totally overwhelmed and let it get to me, I’ve come up with a few strategies over the past year and a half to help me balance a blog that I love writing with the demands on my “real” life. For the sake of time, let’s focus on my top 3.
#1. Take advantage of down time
When I find myself with a larger chunk of time to blog, I try to make the most of it. For example, if I have an afternoon to myself without Riley, I’ll type up several posts instead of one and schedule them ahead of time. Doing this frees up time somewhere else for when I get busy.
I like doing this because being on a computer all day at work, sometimes I come home and don’t even want to touch my laptop. It’s nice to know a post is already lined up and scheduled for the next morning. It’s also nice because my evenings are for snuggling, unwinding, and drinking wine and I don’t like to interrupt that.
#2. Remind yourself what your priorities are.
Whenever I feel the pressure of having to get a post ready, I ask myself, “Is blogging going to take away from something else I’d rather be doing right now?”
If the answer is “Yes”, I walk away. Sometimes watching Modern Family with my husband is more important to me than being glued to a computer screen. When I actually feel an itch to sit down and write, that’s when I reach for the laptop. If you don’t force yourself to write when you’re just not feeling it, you’ll notice that the urge does hit you eventually, and the words will flow more freely.
#3. Stop comparing yourself to others
Professional bloggers stick to a pretty strict schedule. They hold themselves much more accountable because their income depends on it. For the rest of us, we need to cut ourselves some slack. We’re blogging. For fun. We are not saving lives here, so skipping a post or forgetting to reply to some comments will not kill us. Promise.
It’s really easy to look at professional bloggers and those who have more followers, more comments, more social media presence, etc., and wish we could do more ourselves. The reality, though, is that your real life should always come first. If you have some free time and want to spend it on social media or working on your blog, then go for it! The second it starts to stress you out, though, it’s time to take a step back and give yourself a reality check.
So if you’re feeling overwhelmed by the demands of your blog, take a little break. Go spend time away from the computer, enjoying your life. Before you know it, you’ll be itching to write all about it.
Thanks for listening! I’m linking up with Amanda today for TOL, so be sure to head over and see what everyone else is saying today.
How do you balance a blog with your real life?
If you’re not a blogger, how do you balance your work demands with taking time for yourself?