Non-bloggers must think we are crazy for saying this but blogging can quickly and easily take over ones life. Most people do not just write a blog post and have people flock to it (if only it were that easy, right?). For most of us it is necessary to spend a good chunk of our time, often more time than what we spend writing, visiting other blogs, commenting, and being active on social networking sites to promote our own blogs.
Without trying or even realizing it on a lazy Sunday I can spend anywhere from 2-7 hours in front of my computer. Unfortunately, Monday-Friday I am not so privy to a seemingly endless supply of free time. I balance a part time job, managing my new company (one client as of right now), a full time school workload, keeping up with a household of three messy men, and this blog; if I can get a guilt-free hour in front of the computer M-F I am a happy camper.
Because otherwise, as silly as it sounds, it will manage you. Blogging is our fun activity, a passion for most. If it becomes a daunting task of trying to find a way to live your life around, you will eventually get overwhelmed and stop doing it. Implementing time management skills across the board in your life will give you:
A sense of focus and balance
A relief from anxiety or being overwhelmed
Time to focus on the important things
Time for things you enjoy
In order to see where you can improve, you need to see where you are. For one week, keep a detailed list of where your time is going. When I do this I write down what I’ve been doing for the past 15 minutes, every 15 minutes. Sound like a lot? Think of all you accomplish in 30 minutes; you may have been on your email, twitter, commenting, and on the phone with your friend. Breaking it down into 15 minutes ensures you don’t leave anything out; the more detailed you can get, the easier later tasks will be for you which will result in you getting a lot more from this!
There is obviously something you would like to spend more time doing if you are still reading this. Make a list of all of the things you would like to accomplish in a day. This list should range from big items (8 hours of office time or time with the children) to small items like spending 15 minutes reading before bed. What is most important however, is to be sure that these items reflect the goals you have established for yourself and will help you have an overall sense of balance in your life.
My favorite way to do this is to take out a piece of paper and make a list of all of the things you have to do it in a day (make dinner, work, etc). Now make a list of all of the things you would do it in a day if you had unlimited free time. How can we blend the two?
Look over your time log and total how much time you spent on certain tasks. Are you going into Twitter every 30 minutes? Checking your email 8 times per day? Getting lost reading news articles for hours? By reviewing how you have spent your week, it is now easy to identify the following:
What activities took up a lot of time but did not contribute to your goals (or happiness)?
What was your biggest time waster?
What do you need to start doing?
What do you need to stop doing?
What were your most surprised with?
I want you to spend the next week really focusing on where your time is going, and where you would like it to go! Stay tuned for part two where we will review how to prioritize and block your tasks and time! Until then…
Stacie said.. “I guess my approach has generally been to post a new blog only once a day and to read and comment on other blogs twice a day. It’s all about balance because you gotta fit in real life! If not, you have nothing to blog about…”
Angela shared… some of her articles on the topic! Look under the heading “About Goal Setting and Time Management” on this page here .”
Lisa said… “Luckily I can catch up on blogs on my iPhone. That helps a LOT! I write my blog posts at work during breaks and lunch too. Otherwise I have no idea how I’d find the time.”
Share your tips with me for how you manage your time and perhaps you will see them featured next time! Also, please leave any questions you may have!