Maintaining consistency for your blog can be quite a challenge. There are a lot of areas to cover: making sure your posts are updated regularly, maintaining the quality of the content, keeping up with trends, moderating feedback etc.
As a result of this need to keep up with readers’ expectations, bloggers have to effectively use whatever time they have available. What they need is sound time management.
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This is why I’ve listed a few tips here that you might find useful. These are merely suggestions, some of you here may prefer a less rigid approach to time management when you’re writing something creative and original. You may prefer putting the art above delivery. For myself, I would prefer a balance between spontaneity and structure to make sure I still keep up with my deadlines for submitting my entries.
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1. Catch Ideas As They Pop Up Unexpectedly
Like how writers and people of influence like to keep journals to jot down their experiences, feelings and thoughts, bloggers can also follow this practice to get ideas for their blog material. Apart from providing you with original ideas for your writing, jotting down those ideas as they pop up will save you a significant amount of time in the brainstorming process.
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By the time you settle down to write your piece, you’d have quite a number of ideas in hand to work with. Our mind works best by means of association, so it’s easy to flow from one idea to another when you already have a few good leads to start from.
This is also the best exit strategy from writer’s block. Instead of starting with a blank slate, you can continue on from what you’ve already gathered from your jotted ideas.
Recommended Reading: Bloggers: 23 Ways To Counter Writer’s Block
2. Plan an Outline Prior to Writing
After you gather all the ideas in your head and on your notepad, you should start off with an outline of what your post will be about. Doing a simple outline first enables you to make changes or add ideas easily.
You can also link all sorts of random ideas together to make a coherent and convincing piece. With this basic structure of how your piece is going to flow, all your thought processes will have a clearer direction, which is essential to keep your writing in track.
It will be easier to churn out the final piece, overcome writer’s block and can prevent or minimize the possibility of double work (in which case, you don’t have to start on the same project from scratch).
3. Sticking to a Routine
Humans are creatures of habit. Once you’ve started yourself off with a set of routines, follow through it day-by-day, you’ll find that it’s not easy to break the streak. That’s good for you as a blogger because that means you have a system, and that system will help you meet deadlines.
The best thing about systems is that you can pick the best time of the day to write and then build your routine around it. It takes a bit of experimentation to get the right period for the right task.
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Maybe you are the nocturnal type, who prefer to write during the wee hours of the night. It doesn’t matter; what matters is that you fix a schedule for your tasks, then it will be harder to procrastinate. Habits may take some time to form, but once formed, it is equally hard to break them.
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4. Deal With One Thing at a Time
While working on your masterpiece, it’s often too easy to get distracted by other activities running in the background. You may have social messengers and video-streaming sites to check out, or personal emails to attend to. You may console yourself by thinking that you’re multi-tasking and getting everything done at the same time, but you’re just distracted.
Try to focus on just one thing at a time. It’s an effective time management mindset because it instills discipline in what you do. This also ensures that your mind doesn’t wander from one task to another and that you won’t lose your train of thought.
Everytime you do ‘get lost’, your mind needs to trace back to where you stopped to resume the thought process. It wastes an inordinate amount of time when every distraction adds up.
5. Have a Priority List
Listing things is one of the most basic way to manage time. If keeping such lists is a lifesaver for you, then a priority list is your guardian angel. In a priority list, you get to rank the order of importance of each task so that you can pay attention to the most urgent ones.
The list comes to be, based on the weight you put on each task. Need it completed earlier or need more time with it? Put it higher up the list. Can skip or forgo a certain task? Then, put it lower down the list.
The idea is to concentrate more on tasks that need to be completed earlier. For this to work, we can’t choose to do things based on how easy it is to complete or based on our personal preferences. Prioritization benefits your time management by first highlighting to you what needs your attention first.