Working for yourself can be confusing. Let’s talk blogger time management — how to get the stuff done you do all day.
I had always wondered what full-time bloggers did all day. What did blogger time management look like when you worked for yourself?
And for that fact — what is it like being home all the time and being your own boss.
So, today’s it’s a behind the scenes look at Pulling Curls — the blog I started in 2005.
My morning looks mostly like yours. I get up, I sometimes work out. I shower/get dressed. I do a quick check of email and blog stats and then it’s off to the races to get kids off to school.
My kids go to 3 different schools (since they’re each in elementary, middle and high school respectively). It takes about an hour for all of them to be in school, so we make lunches in shifts, but my final one usually gets himself out the door pretty well on his own.
At this point, it’s about 8 am.
Each day I try to create a to do list of 5 things I’d like to get done for the blog and 5’ish things I want to get done around the house.
Unless I have meetings/conference calls my day usually proceeds like this (many days have a meeting or a conference call):
I try to get an hour of writing first off in the morning. And by writing, I mean writing posts, making images for the posts, SEO’ing posts (SEO stands for “search engine optimization” — it’s how you get picked up by search engines like Google). That type of a thing.
I try to be almost a month ahead in my posts. I just like to have it all planned in advance so if I were to get sick or have an emergency, I’m not in blogging limbo with nothing going up.
Then, I usually throw in some laundry or do my 10 minute tidy.
Then, spend an hour working on projects. Things like my courses, or newsletter sequences.
I then try to get a small workout in (I do a workout program that is split into doing small exercises throughout the day — I do the majority in the AM, but I like the idea of revving up my metabolism a few times during the day).
I often have a little snack at this point as well.
Then, it’s back to the computer for an hour of social media management. Each day I have a task assigned to it and just focus on that area.
- Monday: Optimize popular posts/seo/fix ads/email sign ups
- Tuesday: Weekly Newsletter
- Wednesday: Pinterest
- Friday: Facebook/Twitter
(I normally work Thursdays, so nothing is assigned that day)
After that, I try to get up and do a few things around the house (making sure I know what’s for dinner). I mostly alternate between large blog tasks and small household tasks.
Then, my final task is answering emails. I get a TON of email and I do answer every one. However, the majority are group emails asking me to write about a product or idea. I have canned answers, but I do try to answer for each one.
For your info — I don’t take guests posts on the site, and I, in general, don’t do product reviews. I do write sponsored posts but companies pay me to be featured on the blog and I only allow it if they are a good fit.
Hopefully by 3 pm when kids are coming home I’m fairly done with the main blog stuff.
Sometimes I do some light designing on the laptop.
Sometimes work overflows into dinner time…. and life goes on.
But I REALLY try to have the main work done by 3 pm.
The truth is I love being a blogger. I do work as a nurse once a week, and I really don’t think I would want to work as a nurse full time. I love being able to be home with my kids, and the flexibility this affords me — even if it is sometimes hard to work with them home (especially during the summer).
Lately, I’ve heard a lot of blogging whining — about how hard it is. But I am firmly in the camp that I have a cushy gig. My hours are flexible, I can write about what I want and I have a super supportive family.
There is the side that things never “turn off”– but I really think that by being pre-scheduled a few weeks and assigning certain tasks to certain days (just like I do my cleaning schedule) life runs REALLY smooth in my blogging land.
Of course, sometimes I have to photograph what we’re having for dinner.
I no longer follow Facebook on my phone (although I can look at it through my browser). I really enjoy Instagram, so that is something I do in my downtime, and I find it fun.
Twitter is a bit nebulous to me — but I do try to jump on when I have a few minutes during the afternoon to see if anything exciting is going on. 🙂
I am addicted to watching my blog statistics during the day (to a fault).
My husband works part time and does the majority of the housework on the days he is home. Cleaning, and putting in the laundry. I do more of the organization and pitch in when I can.
He is absolutely amazing. He also does editing and is an awesome sounding board. 🙂
I do love seeing clean counters, so I often do the bathrooms when he’s at work.
I haven’t thought of getting a maid. If my husband wasn’t as able to do as much, I’d expect my kids to chip in more to even-out more of the duties.
I am completely in love with my robotic vacuum though. We are still working on a name for him.
Anyway — that’s the usual day in the life. Throw in a sprinkling of talking to brands, and PTO work — sometimes lunch with a friend and there you have it.
Working from home is work — but it’s flexible work that can allow you some freedom.
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