The popularity of blogging is increasing every day, as more and more people realize that it has a powerful earning potential and also allows them to express themselves to a large audience. However, it can be difficult to begin a blog when you’re already balancing work, family, and other life commitments. How do you find the time to add one more activity to your list? It’s important to consider what you want to get out of blogging and how much you’re willing to put into it. Here are five tips for juggling blogging and office work.
1. Clearly Outline Goals for Your Blog
Before you begin a blog, the most important thing you can do is sit down and outline what you’re hoping to accomplish. It’s helpful to get an idea of what you’ll be writing about and to define your target audience. Many bloggers also find success by outlining a niche to write in and allowing this subject area to focus all aspects of their blogging. You should also think about things such as how often you want to post and whether you want to turn your blog into a business or to release products at any point in time. By giving yourself an outline of goals and setting clear action steps to correspond with each item, you’ll be better prepared to balance blogging with the rest of your life.
2. Set Aside a Consistent Time for Blogging and Stick to it
Now that you have an idea of what you’ll be blogging about and what you want your blog to grow into, it’s time to develop a consistent time for blogging. This should be a deep commitment to yourself that doesn’t get put aside when other things come up, or else it will soon become habit for you to neglect your blog. Though you may not need to schedule blogging time daily, it’s important to choose an amount of time that works for you and then to stick with it.
3. Take Advantage of Post Scheduling
One of the best ways to balance your blogging with your other work is to work with an advance post scheduling system. This will allow you to batch your blog posts, writing several articles in a single, focused work session, and to then schedule them to be published at various times throughout the week. For bloggers who can easily become busy very quickly due to responsibilities at work or children around the house, scheduled posts are a great way to build your blog without having to hover over it. You’ll also be able to build a greater and more loyal audience by posting regularly and sticking to a schedule that they can expect.
4. Communicate Clearly with Your Family, Friends, and Co-workers
When you’re beginning blogging, it’s often natural to feel like it is a personal project for yourself that you are not sharing with others around you. It’s important that you communicate clearly and openly on issues concerning the balance of your blog and your other work in order to be sure that everyone is on the same page. Set boundaries around your time with family and friends so that your consistently scheduled blogging time is not interrupted with social events. Let your co-workers know what you’re working on, simply so that they will understand a different facet of you. Be sure to communicate to everyone that you do not intend to let your blog get in the way of your other commitments.
5. Check in with Your Goals and Adjust Your Blogging Style
Finally, check in with your goals from time to time and don’t be afraid to readjust your blogging style if it needs it. You should be staying on track with your consistently scheduled blogging times, so if you’re having trouble meeting these, it may be time to consider making a change to the schedule. Similarly, look at where you want the blog to go and how you want it to grow – is it on track for these developments? Or, do you need to make a new plan in order to direct it toward this path? If you’re having trouble finding the passion to motivate yourself to work on your blog, it may also be time to consider a new blogging topic or finding a different niche. A blog can be a wonderful way to set goals for yourself and to create actionable steps that will allow you to achieve them. That’s why it’s so important to put in great effort to your blog and keep the passion alive even while balancing other work and life commitments.
42 thoughts on “Guest Post: 5 Tips for Juggling Blogging and Office Work by James Adams”
Blogging online and working other job offline can really be difficult for a person to handle. But I still know few that were able to manage their blogs because they have a reliable daily schedule. I actually read a post of blogger on how he managed his work online without sacrificing his personal activities too with his family. He clearly allocated hours of work for a specific task that he needs to finish within the day. Though he was able to religiously follow his schedule, he pointed out that he was able to follow at least 80% of the schedule.
That blogger is a wonderful example of someone who is determined to succeed. When you say “He clearly allocated hours of work for a specific task”, that’s a factor right there. It sounds like he has goals, a strategy and a strong work ethic. Those are key factors for succeeding. No one ever said that success would come easy. Thanks for sharing. I always enjoy reading your comments.
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I’m glad you’re happy with all my comments! Yup, I actually told him how I admired his commitment to his blog without limiting his time with families. I know some people who find it really hard to balance all aspects of their lives for one main reason, lack of discipline. There are times that I’m guilty of it! lol But it’s just a matter of knowing what’s wrong the set-up and make the necessary improvements so that everything will turn out to be great!
I do like your post for the reason that it is concise and easy to understand. I like how you come to these kinds of ideas and I am really amazed because of that. I got your point and I will going to use it next time. Thanks your post and have a great day!
Thanks for the positive feedback Shey. This is the 2nd guest post by James and it’s great to hear that you enjoyed it.
I do blogging four to five times a week. I believe that on this way I can communicate my ideas at the same time I can expose my work to others.I can also build good rapport to my co-blogger. Thanks for sharing this information. It is a very useful tips to a blogger like me.
Step 1. Get good at pressing alt+tab.
All awesome points James. I really like the point on Communicating Clearly with Your Family and Friends!!
Thanks for sharing this great post!
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Oh what I wouldn’t give to be able to keep to a schedule! Possibly one of the most important things you can do to build ranking and traffic, and also one of the hardest. Setting that goal from the onset is probably a good idea and will get the habit ingrained. Nice post from James there Sherryl.
Thanks Paul. I’m with you about the schedule. It’s difficult when you’re trying to launch new projects,keep up with your existing projects and still maintain some semblance of sanity. 🙂
I’m with you, Paul.
If writing quality articles is difficult, getting the traffic in to read them is way more so. I spend more time doing that than writing, lol.
James – Great tips on building a successful blog. The key is to take blogging as serious as you would your office work and stick to it. Because if you don’t take your blogging obligations serious you won’t consistently follow any of these great tips you have outlined here. Also, nobody jumps into something and becomes good at it overnight. Anyone interested in starting a productive blog should expect some setbacks and hardships along the way.
That is so true James. There are so many abandoned blogs on the Internet. It takes time and perseverance to be successful.
Perfect timing is an absolute must. If you don’t have the time in the day, late at night always works good; but the next day does suck.
There are definitely better times and days to post. Personally, I’ve found that I get more comments faster when I post earlier in the week. It’s definitely important to keep an eye on what day of the week works best for you. Thanks for commenting Peter.
I became interested also of blogging but I’m still hesitant to start because I’m considering also a lot of things. I know blogging really needs time in order to gain popularity and maintain it to stay active. I am working at the office and I am doing a lot of things there and when I go home, I have my family to consider. I am thinking if how will I balance my time if I will start blogging. And now after I read your post, I now decide to engage in blogging. I am encourage by you and thanks for these tips!
Helaena, That’s wonderful that you’ve decided to blog! I think James tip #1 is the best place for you to start. I’d suggest starting slow and don’t over commit your time. Blogging once a week is fine. If your work all week, maybe planning to post on one of your days off would work for you. If you get get creative during the week, you can create the draft and save it or schedule it as James suggested . Good for you getting started. Come back sometime and leave a comment with a link to your blog and I’ll check it out.
Good reminders. Went to Holland earlier this week and since I wasn’t doing anything with my blog I presumed the amount of clicks had gone down. But no, they had actually increased. But to schedule articles the way you suggest is a good idea, especially since I get over 60% of my readers directly and from Google and other search engines.
Glad to hear your traffic is increasing Catarina. I read your blog and can tell that your articles take time to write. They’re well thought out and informative. If you write ahead, scheduling may work well for you.
I also find this post very informative. Thank you! Not that I haven’t known these points before now, but it’s always good to read a short summary of the most important principles of some activity. I used to have a personal blog, but I didn’t manage it well. The problem was I couldn’t write regularly. I guess post scheduling would have been quite a good solution here. If I launch another blog, I’ll try to manage it in a wise way)
Good luck Claire. How often were you trying to post new articles? Some people start out trying to blog every day and that just won’t work for many of us. I agree with James that it’s best to set goals that will work for you.
What a great post. I really enjoyed it. Blogging three to four times a week, definitely takes up time, especially when original artwork is being designed for each post some times. This is a great resources to organize your time and thoughts. Great read. Thank you, James and Sherryl.
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Thanks for letting us know you like it Dennis. I can’t imagine blogging 3 to 4 times a week. I was grateful to have James’ post this week.
Thank you for taking this step. It would be interesting to know how helpful it has been for you personally. I like the idea of dofollow blogs, but get very irritated when the bulk of the responses are of the kind, “Great post, I enjoyed reading it,” or “Fantastic blog, keep up the good work.”
I agree that having a blogging schedule is a good idea. But I do recommend leaving yourself open to a new idea that pops up from a news development, or something you’ve just read — or that flows from some creative place in your mind. I find those are the easiest to write. When I’m inspired I do my best writing, which is why having a schedule of blogs is a good idea but I don’t feel the need to be diligent about it.
Sounds like you blog a lot like I do Jeannette! I try to schedule the day that I post but that’s just about it. Lately lots of my post ideas have been coming from conversations with other bloggers who are either sending up distress signals or are relaying what they’re frustrated about. When I’m trying to give info to help someone, that’s what inspires me.
Hi, Sherryl. This is a very helpful post from James and I am glad that you allowed him to have a guest post here. Goals are very important, not just in blogging but in marketing in general. Just as we need a marketing plan, we also need goals within this plan so we will have a direction in how we accomplish things. They also help avoid the burn out Susan mentioned.
– Wes –
Thanks Wes. I’m glad you like James’ post. He writes well and I believe his posts resonate with the readers of my blog. I’m open to more guest posts if you’re interested. I haven’t been able to find the time yet to guest blog myself but I think it’s great to add a new voice every once in a while.
I am very much interested, Sherryl. I am still in the process of trying to come up with a good post to share with your readers. I’m glad you are welcoming us very warmly here.
It is good to be reminded of these tips. I am yet to write posts in advance but that is one priority for next year. I was late with a post this week and one of my reguar readers tweeted that he didn’t get his email. Also I think it is important to start slowly so as you get more experience you can always increase the number of posts per week. Otherwise you can burn out.
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Susan is right! It is easy to get burned out when you complete a new post every day! Blogs are like marathons, you have to pace yourself!
I have to point out the importance of the first point. If you do not know what you want to accomplish for your blog, you will not be able to plan your actions accordingly. Everyone has a different reason for blogging. Reasons range from monetary gain to networking with others interested in the same things. Define your goals, then plan your actions.
Point five is also very important. A blog can be looked at like a business choice or a personal choice. Try to keep your blog in line with your goals. If you approach a business like it is just a social event, it may turn out to be just that: A social event. If a social event is what you want, then you will want to include the things that would make it the best social event ever!
Dustin, It’s so good to hear from other business minded bloggers who understand the importance of having goals – especially if you strategy is to treat your blog as a business. Thanks for adding to the conversation!
It certainly takes discipline to balance work and blogging. Blogging also opens up a whole other world of social media that can be difficult to not waste hours of time on.
Thanks for the tips.
Good point about social media. It’s important to get statistics on your traffic and see which social networking sites drive the most traffic. For me, it’s Twitter with LinkedIn second. Still, I continue to use Facebook to develop deeper relationships with other bloggers that I’m connected to. It would be interesting to know what social media works best and for which niche.
All good points. When I started blogging I wrote a number of posts and scheduled them. Then I filled in as I wrote. Guest blogging is another situation to consider. If you get a guest blogger they fill the space for you. You can also guest blog for someone else. I just got asked today to write a guest post.
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Guest blogging is a great tool to build exposure. It’s also a wonderful to strengthen relationships with other bloggers. This is the 2nd post that James has written for my blog and I’ve let him know how much I appreciate it. It’s nice to have a new voice every once in a while and new readers are commenting on his post. So, that’s another win for me. Did you say yes to guest posting?
I would be interested. Let’s talk about it offline via e-mail.
Rob Berman recently posted..Do You Have Marketing Lagniappe
Hi John & Patricia
Thanks to you both for your comments. My blog is still sitting on the shelf readying itself to go, but, I just need to get the site set up right. Alas it will have to wait to 2011, but it will be happening then.
I like the way that you’ve set these steps out nice and clearly and simple to follow. Patricia you have obviously done your homework on your competitors. Do you subscribe to any of their blogs?
John, you speak here on the writing side of blogs, but what about the time and allocation that you spend commenting on other people’s blogs? Do you make that part of your daily routine as well? How much of your time do you allocate to Guest Posting? I would love your comments on this.
I do subscirbe to one lavender grower in the US. I have found a lot of others don’t have regular updates and sell through their farm shops or one I really liked sells to the French perfume market so couldn’t get anything going with any of them
That’s why when I found a local lavender farm that made their own natural products (no chemicals or preservatives added) I asked if I could sell their products. We have a great working relationship and she is thrilled that I am so committed to getting the word out there about the lovely lavender and its many uses.
Patricia Perth Australia
I have been blogging seriously for a few months now. I so relate to the points you have made in this post. I still think some of my family and friends don’t quite get it but that’s okay cos they are supporting me in their own way.
Without a plan and some idea of what you want to achieve with a blog; it is hard to get going and stay focussed. I had a business plan, looked at my competition and traffic within my chosen small niche. Learning heaps from the blogging community who are so supportive and encouraging. Need those to cheer us on as there will be bumps in the road and I do want to continue and eventually have a successful business tied in with my niche.
Patricia Perth Australia
Patricia, You have a wonderful niche selling lavender products. It is wonderful to have the support of your family and friends. Like you, I turn to the community of bloggers for support too.
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