Balance. No matter where you need it in your life, achieving it can be an ongoing struggle. We may never reach that perfect equilibrium where we feel totally at peace, like you’re just coasting and handling it all. Both Dani and I have full time jobs in addition to our blogging careers, and we completely understand that managing both jobs can be frustrating at times. There just aren’t enough hours in the day, right? Here are five things we do to that help us manage both our full time day job and our blogging careers.
I have to mention that we both have jobs that are pretty flexible to our blogging lifestyles. I freelance, so I basically choose my hours but always do my best to work 40+ hours a week. If I have to shoot in the morning, my job doesn’t mind if I come in at 10am instead of 9. If I have a meeting with a brand on a Wednesday afternoon, I can take it. However, I know a lot of women who have more rigid careers who also blog full time. It is just a matter of making it work for yourself.
1. Early to Rise, and Late To Sleep. A little (okay a lot) of flexibility goes a long way. If you are truly passionate about taking your blog to the next level, you have to be willing to sacrifice some sleep. Dani and I both wake up early for photo shoot days before we head to work. I like shooting in the mornings because I feel fresh and energized for the day. And some days, you’ll have to stay up later than you want to in order to write copy, edit photos, or finish emails for the day.
2. Pick A Schedule that Works For Your Life. Not all bloggers post every single day. In fact, unless you’re a full-time blogger, its quite unusual and ambitious to post every single day. I set a goal of three blog posts a week for myself – Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Sometimes, when I know work is going to be nuts, I write all three posts over the weekend and schedule them across the week. When things are getting too insane at work, I give myself a break and post twice a week. I post on Instagram every weekday, and if I have enough content, I post on the weekends too.
This is the schedule that works for me. I don’t have children, I’m not on any charitable boards, and I’m not dealing with any health issues. If posting once a week is all you can do, then choose your day and stick to it! Consistency and routine is a good place to start. Then once you get the hang of it, you can always add more.
3. Weekends Aren’t Sacred. Long gone are the weekends where Dan and I can afford to be lazy. I’m always shooting on the weekends, hunting something down for a campaign, or asking Dan to help me with a project. Since we travel a lot, I typically use weekends at home to crank out content to use for the upcoming week.
4. Hire Help. The longer I’ve been blogging, the more I realized my weaknesses. Mine are the technical things like photo editing, web development, and SEO optimization. Hiring a professional photographer has saved me boatloads of time that it takes to upload photos, cull the best ones, and edit them. When Michelle delivers me a set of ready-to-post photographs, the cost is worth every penny. And it saves me hours of frustration trying to teach myself something that takes years of expertise.
I also hired a web developer to help me with back-end technical things on my website. The layouts you see, widgets, and general flow of my website is something I imagine in my head, describe to my developer Guillermo, and he does the dirty coding work that used to take me many hours, and many tears. Even if you don’t hire help, it helps to have one designated blogger friend you love and trust (mine is Dani) whom you can bounce ideas off of. Early on, we made a pact to be completely honest and open with one another about our businesses, and that camaraderie has proven invaluable. We know this type of relationship isn’t easy to come by, but if you can find someone trustworthy with similar goals and dreams, the ability to talk things out is like therapy for business owners.
5. Partner Support. I’m lucky to have a spouse who has supported my blogging dreams from the beginning. He knows that I might not go to bed at the same time as him because I’m finishing up a post, or that I have to jet out the door on a Saturday morning to shoot a campaign. Vacations aren’t just vacations – they’re also opportunities for unique and exciting content. While I mentioned that you yourself have to be flexible, those around you need to be, too. Sometimes work is really nuts during the week, and Dan will have to shoot a campaign for me on the weekend. Every week is different, but having an understanding flexible partner makes juggling a job and a blog so much easier.
Don’t forget to check out Dani’s post about how she balances her full time job with blogging! You can always email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) with questions, or to suggest next month’s topic.
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