We are all busy people living in an increasingly distracting world. Your site is something you usually start in your free time while having a full time job and other family, friends and life commitments. It is good that many people see the opportunity to create sites and work on developing themselves, but it is sad to see the same people using the excuse of being busy to let their sites die shortly after they are launched.
Everyone has 24 hours in a day. You sleep 8 hours and you work 8 hours. There is still 8 hours left in a 24 hour day. How you spend these other 8 hours is the key to being an efficient blogger and achieving your goals. If you don’t use your time wisely your output will suffer and you will have difficult time growing your audience. Optimizing your day depends on letting go of the unproductive tasks and time wasters. This infographic shows 8 things you can get rid of to become more productive.
Your productivity – 80/20 principle
The idea of letting go of your time wasters comes from the Pareto principle. 80% of the value you get will be from 20% of the things you do. Harnessing the power of the 80/20 principle will trigger an explosion in your productive capacity and will bring you closer to achieving your goals. It will allow you to have time for your full time job and for your family and other commitments. Above I listed some of the tasks that I consider time-wasters in my own work – they are my 80%. The idea is for you to figure out which of your tasks are in the 20% and then spend most of your time doing those tasks while limiting the rest. Look at the big picture. Concentrate on the things that produce fantastic results and stop wasting time on unproductive things that are irrelevant to your success.
Knowing the best uses of your energy and time is much more important than trying harder, working longer or complaining about not having time. Less is more as the saying goes. My 20% tasks are creating content and marketing. It can be as simple as that. There is a set of very important questions all bloggers should be asking themselves daily in order to identify the results of your efforts:
- How did I spend my day?
- Did I take any steps towards reaching my goals?
- Did I improve my chances today?
- Did I improve my site?
- Did I spread the word about it?
- Have I worked on increasing the readership and increasing the revenue?
It is clear that for a blogger to become successful good prioritization skills are a key. You need to have a talent to distinguish between what needs to be done and what doesn’t. You need to know the difference between make work and real work. These are the 8 tasks that I always make time for no matter how busy I am and that I recommend you do too.
Goals might be too much of a theoretical talk for some people but without goals you do not have an aim. This means that you do work without much of a focus and to really become a productive blogger you need to work focused. Always set goals for your site. The goals will help you focus your time on the tasks that lead you towards achieving them.
Everything that does not directly involve making art and creating new content can be deprioritized. Write posts. Create infographics. Shoot videos. Record podcasts. Produce whatever it is that you are producing. The lifeline of a site is the content and new content must keep rolling in regularly to keep the interest of the audience and to attract a new audience. This is why one of the main tasks writers should always have time for is to create and produce new content.
Build it and they will come. This doesn’t work in the blogging world. Build it and they will not come is more correct. Getting out and hustling to push your content is a key in spreading the word about your content. Promotion can be done in many ways, some of the common tactics are commenting, guest posting and getting influencers to spread the word about you. Important is to keep pushing yourself.
Internet is such a great medium. Everything on it can be measured and analysed. Don’t take this for granted and actually do spend time on analysing your efforts and your progress towards your goals. Do look at your stats, do listen to the feedback, do keep an eye out on the interaction and engagement you get in social media.
Analysing the stats is one, but actually using the analysis to change and adapt is what you should be aiming for. The data you collect and analyse will show you what has worked, what hasn’t worked and it will lead you on the way yo achieving your goals. Take action and use the data to optimize your work.
6. Get inspired
Inspiration is important for keeping the motivation and for improving and reinventing yourself. Be curious and open-minded about the world around you. Read books, magazine and other websites. Listen to radio, listen to podcasts and actually listen to people you are speaking to. The world is full of inspiration so get inspired.
7. Be healthy
No matter how busy you are your health has to be your priority. Without a healthy body and mind you will never be able to become a successful blogger. Make sure to eat real food, make sure to drink liquids, make sure to get some sleep, make sure to stretch and move your body regularly, make sure to take breaks to rest your eyes and mind.
8. Go offline
Days can go quickly when you’re working, writing, checking social media and surfing the net. Days can easily become blurred. Sometimes it is good to disconnect from the screen and take some time off. Be it couple of hours, be it a weekend… Get away from your routine to re-energise yourself.
Limiting the environment around you
As you see the main theme is: Was I a producer or was I a consumer today? Did I do something today to get closer and reach my dreams or did I just spend another day dreaming and reading about other people and the way they lead their lives. These “producing” activities will for most people be the 20% of activities that bring 80% of results.
Everyone is too busy these days, it is a very popular thing to tell everyone around you in any case. Nobody wants to say I’m not busy or I am bored or I have too much free time on my hands. That is uncool. But if you really look deeper into how you actually spend your “busy” day you will certainly be able to find some free gaps of time where you are either doing some unproductive activities that you can stop at anytime or where you actually have free time to focus on more important tasks.
Many “busy” people spend their other 8 hours doing “important” tasks like watching, listening, reading about and discussing events that are not too relevant with their own lives or their own goals. These events can be things like the royal wedding, it can be the latest celebrity moves and scandals, it can be sports news and events and so much more. Spending time on current events like these will hardly get you anywhere in terms of your projects and your goals (unless you are actually covering the current events on your project).
Be careful not to spend too much time checking out your favorite websites or your Twitter stream instead of working on your own content. You do not get better by thinking or talking or reading about it. You get better by taking action and doing it. Don’t let your time be controlled by the environment and the events happening around you. Instead of watching and reading about these random events that have no influence on your life, you can take that time that you spend on them and put in the effort on things that will bring you close to achieving your goals.
Produce a new post that will help people out, that people will care about. Help people with their questions / problems. Reach out to people and connect to them. Show them why you are the best person to help them out with the problems they are facing. Take actions towards reaching your dreams. Do it today. Do it every day for a long period of time. Don’t be a consumer, be a producer.
To help you do this properly you do need to figure out what your goals and objectives are. This will help you identify the meaningful activities, it will bring some focus to you and will lead you to knowing what tasks and activities you should be focusing your time on. It will help you work smart and not hard.
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