Don’t Like Blogging? Cearagh's 3 Strategies For Blogging Anyway
This blog post was supposed to be about Facebook’s updated algorithm of 2018. It’s a very ~hot topic~ right now. Natalie and I have conducted a few successful workshops about it, focused on the changes and our recommendations to working WITH the change instead of AGAINST it. (If you’d like to be notified when that post actually gets published, be sure to sign-up for our newsletter at the bottom of this webpage!)
But as I started writing this post I somehow found other things to do with my time like….
- Looking for the perfect blog writing song;
- Working from my desk then moving to the couch;
- Checking the weather (specifically the 14 day forecast);
- Moving from the couch to my bedroom;
- Changing into “blog writing” clothes;
- Talking to Natalie on the phone;
- Looking at blueprints for a house I won't be building anytime soon;
- Thinking about initiating “Self Control” (it’s a great app I have on my mac that blocks access to time wasting websites for a set time frame. My blocked sites? Facebook and addictinggames.com because they have a great daily jigsaw);
- Not initiating Self Control;
- Chatting with Marcel;
- Day dreaming about living in San Diego;
- Checking Facebook;
- Watching my Onvisor video;
- Having a shower;
- Eating lunch;
- Making coffee;
- Checking my Facebook notifications;
- Adding my five featured photos to my FB profile;
- Thinking about our upcoming Instagram workshop;
- Answering emails;
- Working on every single other item I have coming up in the next few days that has nothing to do with this blog post.
And now here we are.
If you haven’t picked up on it yet, I write blog posts out of necessity, not by choice.
Since Marrow’s launch, Natalie and I have been able to consistently pump out at least 2 blogs a week, with a guest blog here and there. According to Natalie we now have enough content, one month post launch, to create a Twitter account! (TBA)
Being a part of Marrow has allowed me to jump into working on the things that I love! In most cases, what I enjoy doing is the opposite of what Natalie enjoys, and vice versa. This has worked out for almost everything we do with Marrow and I’m exceptionally grateful for that, but when you work in a team of two, there are still things that need to get done regardless of who enjoys doing them.
And blogging is something I don’t enjoy, but it still needs to get done.
I’d like to take this moment to give a shout out to those of you who have read my blog posts and have even complimented me on them! That truly means a lot to me. But it, surprisingly, still doesn’t make me enjoy writing them.
If you relate to me on this topic, this post is for you. I’m going to share my strategies on how to write a blog post when you want to do anything BUT write a blog post.
1) Plan Ahead
I would like to personally thank grades 1 - 11 for teaching me that I can study the night before a test/exam and still pull off a good mark. Or that I can make it to the provincial heritage fair by doing my entire project the night before. One might say procrastination is a piece of me...
This strategy is exactly what keeps me from sleeping, eating well and exercising when I’m getting close to a deadline. From personal experience, 8 times out of 10, putting things off inevitably causes me to show up as less than my best self or produce less than my best work (the other 2 times out of 10 work in my favour tbh).
Sometimes all nighters are necessary. But EVERY. SINGLE. TIME?? No. Not helpful.
When working on things you don’t enjoy, try to give yourself some extra time to do them. For example, when it comes to writing my next blog post, I would much rather devote a bit of my time over a few days to writing a blog post, rather than stay up all night and still get nothing done because I’m too busy checking the weather.
I guess this is me publicly proclaiming that I’m going to start working on blog posts AT LEAST 2 days before they’re set to go live (I won’t mention here that the process I created for Marrow’s blog posts includes completing a first draft 1 week prior to it going live so we have time to properly proof and vet them. Nothing like living by my own guidelines right?).
2) Take Breaks
What’s that saying? It’s easier to eat an elephant one bite at a time? I don’t know who’s eating elephant because it definitely isn’t me, but the premise of this analogy is quite accurate, even if it’s hard to put into practice.
I think taking a break from your work is important whether you enjoy it or not, but being able to stay on task is that much more important when you don’t enjoy the task. Feel me?
My advice for this one is to start slowly, a few days before the blog is due, with an outline. Then walk away from it and come back to fill in some main points in the body of the post. Walk away again and then return to fill in the intro and conclusion. Boom. First draft done! Practicing anything we don’t enjoy is much easier if we can break it up into digestible pieces.
3) Change the topic
When push comes to shove you might need to just change the topic, like I did! Of course this won’t always be accessible if you’ve already committed to a specific topic for a client, but if you haven’t, switch it up.
Natalie and I have a running google sheet with SO MANY blog topics and when it comes to our weekly posts, we rarely end up writing about any of the topics we’ve already discussed. Forcing something to happen that’s already a daunting task from the get-go is usually bound for disaster or torture.
If you have the freedom to write about something that’s going to come more naturally to you in that moment, go for it!
I was still trying to write about the Facebook algorithm change this morning. Some of you might argue that still would have been a more valuable piece to write. But when I was talking to Nat on the phone, she suggested changing the topic and, instead, write about how difficult it is for me to write blog posts.
So maybe strategy 3.2 is to find yourself someone to bounce ideas off of. Someone who has your back, no matter what. Because their support can often turn a daunting task into a bearable one. And then before you know it, your blog post first draft will be done and you’ll wonder why you didn’t start/finish it sooner.
What is your “blog post”? That thing you need to get done but still avoid it like the plague? I’d love to hear about it and know that I’m not alone in this!