This is probably the number one frustration of parent bloggers everywhere. Blogging can be all consuming, with a never ending to do list, and it’s addictive! Once you start, a whole new world opens up. With it can come financial gains, personal gains and creative freedom but it also has it’s stresses. Mum and Dad bloggers are always popular because they’re relatable and informative. But how do you find the time to fit the heavy workload in without staying up late and sacrificing your free time? Here are some ways you can squeeze in blogging tasks and posts whilst being parent of the year – almost.
Make notes and lists
Keep a notebook and pen or a notes app on your phone handy so that when inspiration strikes (usually at inappropriate times) you can jot down blog post ideas, meme ideas, quotes or anything you need to brain dump. I’m a lover of the pen and paper, although I do make notes on my phone too. It will take the feeling of everything whirling through your head away and decrease stress.
Make it realistic
I used to keep so many notes and ideas but then I realised I don’t physically have the time to bring them all to fruition right now. I have to concentrate on what’s going to bring me the best return on my time, be it financial reward or something that will save me time and money in the long run. It can also be worth collaborating or providing a quote for ‘free’ if it will raise your profile. I choose these collaborations carefully now. Set realistic and achievable goals, and if you’re struggling to balance it all, re-evaluate them.
If your children are young enough to still have naps, this is your time. Do all the household chores and errands whilst they’re awake, go to playgroup etc., and then during nap time you can do those tasks that need more concentration like writing the blog post and creating graphics.
Yes it’s noisy but it can be a great time to blog. Most have free wi-fi so you could even take your laptop. I take my phone and do social media networking, scheduling, emails and pitching. I can also make graphics with the canva app. I have outlined blog posts on my phone too.
Involve the children in photo shoots, make them fun and enjoy them together. If you need product photos or lifestyle shots for Instagram, do a batch of them, then you’ll have a load of content ready to schedule.
Batch tasks together
We’ve just talked about taking lots of photos together, you can then edit them all in one go. Here are some more tasks you can batch together:
- Have a brainstorming session and get a load of ideas down
- Do a load of Pinterest graphics so you can easily edit them to suit
- Check social media channels, reply to messages
- Check facebook groups for networking and opportunities
- Outline blog posts in drafts
- Schedule social media posts (I use Social Bee, Buffer and Grum)
- Write newsletters/ emails
- Format blog posts and add images
- Fill up your Tailwind queue or spend time pinning
- Research and educate yourself via an e-course or by looking at other’s content
- Comment on high authority blogs
- Create graphics for Pinterest
- Create freebies and opt-ins
- If you’re crafty, do one craft with seasonal variations so you get several posts out of one activity
- Review and chase invoices
- Check and reply to emails
- Update your accounts
Tools and apps to save time
For me, a scheduler is a must. When I first started blogging and for the first 2 years I spent more time on it than I do now and was getting less money in. Now I work smarter and make more. I use Tailwind for Pinterest including tribes and smart loop, Buffer for Twitter parties and for posting in Facebook groups, Social Bee for the majority of my sharing on Facebook and Twitter, and Grum for scheduling to Instagram, although mostly I set an alarm and post that way. I create the post with all the hashtags and tags when I have a spare moment, then go back and save it as a draft until the time is right to post, usually around 8pm. Social Bee allows me to have evergreen and seasonal content, so I never run out of things to post. It’s been so helpful for growing my Facebook page in particular, because it’s now more consistent.
I’ve already mentioned a notes app, I use Evernote, because I can open it on the laptop as well and pick up where I left off. I also have word and excel on the phone and it links in on the laptop.
Write whilst they eat
Either work whilst they breastfeed if possible, or dish up their lunch or snack and squeeze in some time then. It’s all about snatches of time. Remember, it’s better to focus on one task at a time rather than to multi task.
Set yourself a deadline
If you only have 30 minutes free, set a timer and get as much done as you can in that time.
Do homework together
Sit together round the table and the kids can do their homework and you can do blog work. If they get stuck or need help you’re there for them and you’re all working together.
For when you have a deadline to meet, whack on a film and give them some popcorn, so you can have an hour to get it done.
How do you stay productive when you have small children?
Disclosure: collaborative post