How to Blog Productively: 17 Experts Reveal Their Secrets

By: | June 6, 2015 | Tags: , , ,
How to be #productive and still have time to #blog

Experts reveal solutions to finding time to blog and still be productive.

What is your goal for your blog?

Is it to get page views?  Traffic seems to be most bloggers’ dream.

Do you have a number in mind?  100 page views a day?  1,000 page views a day?

A blogger, who has been blogging for six years, who I consider successful, told me if she has 100 page views, she is having a bad day, and if she gets 1,000 page views, she is having a good day.

1,000 page views?

On a day I consider “good,” I try to follow the advice I share with my readers.  Treat others like you would want to be treated.  If you want page views, you should visit others’ blogs and also give them traffic.

However, many of my readers and I work outside the home.  How are we supposed to find time to visit all those people each day and still find time for a job and a personal life?

Many of my readers write me to explain they are looking for this answer.  Someone wrote and told me everyone wants to know how to find time for everything in the course of a day.

“Everyone” is in luck.  I asked 16 blogging experts how they have time to balance blogging and life, and they have graciously agreed to tell us.

According to the blog BatteredHope,

In the last decade or more, people seem to be getting busier and having less time to do the things that are important to them.

Note these comments I received from readers:

Yep, it’s a distant met, sleep I mean, but yep I get it! What I would really like is more hours in a day – that’s not going to happen, anytime soon!

No matter what you do, no matter how organized you are… it’s never going to MAKE you time. It will never add minutes to your day…

…my husband might die laughing if he were to ever find out that I’m attempting to write anything of this nature, but I suppose because I struggle so much balancing life and work, I’m the perfect person to write about it. Who better, after all, to write about the struggles of balance than someone who experiences them constantly? (And I suppose that’s all of us)*

…it seems to never be enough time in a day….sigh…so much to do, so little time…

 I look forward to your coming post about how to save time blogging. If you can show me how to make things easier, I am all ears. Since my following has gotten so huge, trying to keep up has been a monumental task. As it is I’ve cut way back on leaving comments on other blogs compared to what I used to do. I’ve been closing comments on my blog on certain posts. To… carry on a busy life and blog …. some days I don’t know how to continue. It would be so nice to have a manager to promote my work. Seeing I don’t, I’ve been doing the best I know how to. I really appreciate any help you can give me.

There are issues of balance – I see the greater issue to be more one of priorities.

Let’s see what the experts said:

In an attempt to answer the question, I interviewed blogging experts to find out how they balance these tasks.

1. It can be difficult to fit blogging into a busy work life, social life and find time to relax. It is more than doable. You just need to be organized. I have a very detailed Gmail calendar which I stick to and segment off time to be creative and to write.

I also use Evernote to jot down proposed blog post titles when they come to me. I like to plan out the subject and structure when I am on the bus or the tube. I find this can be a great use of time and a wonderful way to take advantage of ‘dead time’.

#blogging #time #productivityIt is also important to work fast, do not give in to distractions. Write, proof and publish. Adam Vowles, www.adamvowles.co.uk

 

mesmall2. Blogging is my life.  It is my full-time job. Stuart Walker, nichehacks.com

 

 

AndreaVahl3. Challenging! One lesson is to know why you are doing it. I wanted to stay home with my kids- I make sure to make time for them. Andrea Vahl, Co-author of Facebook Marketing All-in-One for Dummies, AndreaVahl.com

4. Well, actually to me there is no separation between the two. As an individuKostas Valsamidisal and a professional, I want to be updated with all latest trends and news that concerns my field of expense. However, I always try to prioritize my daily tasks and save a couple of hours for some “me” time! Kostas Valsamidis, beakon.co.uk

5. I run both my website Beyond Your Blog and a personal blog, Pecked To Death By Chickens, and it can be overwhelming at times. In order to juggle, I only work on blog-related things when my two small kids are napping or after they go to sleep at night. On occasion my husband or a family member is watching them and I sneak some work in as well. My husband is great about spending the day with them one or two weekend days a month while I devote a full day to working. I find that when I do get some time to work on my blog and website, I work more efficiently when I know my time is limited, vs. picking it up on and off throughout the day. I tend to do less social media and more with content, which I think is more beneficial in the long run. Ultimately family comes first and blogs second, which keeps me sane and much happier than letting the blogs run me ragged. I can forgive a blog slip up, but it can be harder to fix a family slip up. Susan-HintMamaSusan Maccarelli, Beyond Your Blog

 

6. Setting a goal for creative practice seemed a good way of being intentional about something I value. My target was an average of 20 hours a week.

This target reinforced the idea that I was taking this work seriously, even if it did not have the obvious extrinsic benefits my day job did: being useful in the marketplace, contributing to the social good, paying my bills. The writing would involve journal work, blogging, memoir and poetry. (I list these in increasing order of difficulty – at least for me – where craft is concerned.) Developing my skills as a performance storyteller was somehow supposed to fit into those 20 hours as well.

I have other core values in my life besides work and creativity.

Homemaking, relationships, self-care. I’ve long used a time and task manager in an effort to give all of these areas their due. It’s an Paula Reed Nancarrowapproach I learned from Stephen Covey. Paula Reed Nancarrow, PaulaReedNancarrow.com

 

7. For me, blogging and life go along, and they are one of the same thing. I don’t bound myself to work in exact timing. I do start my day with a long run and writing after that. Usually my goal is to work eight hours a day, and every day is like weekend. Harsh Agrawal, ShoutMeLoud

 

 

8. I try to stick to a schedule of blog posts but don’t force myself to post if I’m too busy or not in the mood. Chelsea Marrs, ChowDownBytheBay, Chelsea MarrsCo-Host of US Blogger Chat

 

 

9. There are times in life when it is okay to be a little “out of balance” in how you spend your time when what you are working towards leads to more flexibility and freedom for you and your family.  I started Bed and Breakfast Blogging in November of 2013 and I have a passion for helping bed and breakfasts with their online marketing through strategic blog writing and social media activity.  I have taken my family with me on some of my overnight trips to visit bed and breakfasts and that has been fun.  Sometimes work and personal life can be combined so then everyone is happy! Kristi using-pinterestDement, bedandbreakfastblogging.com

 

 

10. The first rule I follow is to block out certain hours in my work schedule for personal life, the various work and other affairs. For this, you need to have a proper routine and follow certain time management techniques. It helps to create a time table in print or in your mind. (Writing down might open your mind to more ideas to make it better.)

 However, if you are working from home, it is not easy to separate blogging and life into different compartments, but if you create a schedule and develop a habit to follow it, it certainly helps. You can of course be flexible, but never compromise on ‘your time’ with your work, family, and your health.

 After years of blogging, I have now changed my schedule by allotting more time to my daily walks, exercises, cooking, and spending time with my children. Believe me, this really helps you recharge and be happy.

 Blogging is very demanding and sometimes there is no end of doing things, but you need to learn to curb your perfectionist desires and put a limit to what all you can do. This also includes limiting your social media time.

 While blogging is important, there is much more to life. Living a balanced life will bring you more happiness. All you need to do is plan, Harleena Singhbe in control of yourself, be ready to make some compromises, and be determined. Harleena Singh,

 

11. I balance blogging and my personal life by having distinct office hours. I work from home and “go to work” down the hall. When I am done with work, I turn off the lights and close the door just like I was leaving an off-site office. The best part of working from home is that I can make time during the day to enjoy coffee with friends or a business Anne McAuleylunch away from the office. Anne McAuley, mcauleyfreelancewriting.com

 

 

interview. How to balance blogging and life12. I only blog for about four hours a week to be honest.  I have a lot of (guest) authors now and less time to write on my own. Jacob Cass, Just Creative

 

 

13. I frequently get asked how I balance my life and my online life which consists of YouTube videos, new song every week, and of course blogging. At first I set myself a schedule that I had to follow every week to get into the habit of posting consistently.  At first I had to learn through trial and error by living my schedule I created. I realized some things didn’t correlate with my daily activities, so I had to adjust my weekly posting schedule to what would work for me. If you create a schedule and follow it, you will be very successful in posting, and it will start to become a habit. Another key to balance day to day life and blogging is to not over stress. If you stress out on a blog post or have writer’s block don’t worry, take a breather and come back to your project. When there are a million things happening in life and it feels so hectic just stay on schedule and keep calm. I’ve seen too many times the negative affects of stress on individuals and their work. Balancing life and blogging can be tough, but there is a secret that will keep you going no matter what and that’s motivation. If you keep your head high and keep pushing with a passion you will start becoming more successful in your work and blogging. I have realized that motivation is what keeps me going most days. When an individual is motivated to do something they will do it with out dreading any of the work that has to go into it. Stay motivated; I have a passion for blogging and my everyday motivation is to change lives. Find something that can motivate you to put in the work that is needed and to succeed. Always Connor Olivierkeep a positive mind-set, and it will make balancing the craziness of life and blogging. Connor Olivier, TheOfficialCEO.com

 

14. That is a tough question to answer, as it depends so much on one’s situation. My schedule is largely organized around the schedule of my household, specifically my younger daughter, whom I put on the school bus each morning.  Blogging is a big deal, because a post takes me about an hour to draft.  During that hour, I turn off Skype and social media (or at least, that’s what I tell myself).

I like to let my posts sit for 24 hours before reviewing, editing and creating the pic, so I make sure to reserve that hour the day previous to publishing.  I blog weekly at http://thgmwriters.com/blog/ and monthly on a few other places. On publishing day, I pretty much assume that my main activity that morning will be publishing, sharing and promoting the post. That usually takes about two hours, mostly that morning, but some spread over the next few days (monitoring how it’s doing at Viral Content Buzz, sharing Triberr and JustRetweet posts of other people, etc.)

How does this all relate to personal life and balance?  During the designated work hours, work comes first.  Sure, there are times when emergencies take me away (for example, when the guck gets stuck: http://www.business2community.com/business-innovation/set-fire-septic-tank-01149461 ), but priority is to clients, blogging and social networking.  And in summertime, I often do take multiple short breaks to feel the sun on my face, because taking breaks is important for personal well-being.  In wintertime, I often run up and down the stairs to get my blood flowing, but that’s not quite the same thing (no sun on my face).

During off hours, priority is to the family.  If everyone goes off the huddle around the TV (I am not a TV person, unless Doctor Who is playing), I’ll catch up on some of my work, and often it is in the evening that I will write a blog post for one of the other sites I post at.  But that is while the family is all distracted and has no need/time/attention span for me.  When kids need help with homework, or butts kicked to practice their dances or songs, I am there.  When the litter box needs emptying, I am there (often a couple days late, but still, that counts).

 So if I was to make a recommendation as to how someone should find time to balance their blogging life with their personal life, I would say to consider the people in the household.  Look at their schedule and when it is most important to be there for them.  Then make a schedule and stick to it as much as possible, to blog and do whatever other work you need to do, within those times when nobody else will notice that you are at your computer.  Sticking to a schedule, but being flexible to the ebbs and flows of other people’s schedules works well for me. David Leonhardt, President of The Happy Guy Marketing, davidlinfo@THGMwriters.com

 

 

15. How do I find the time to balance blogging and life?  My actual answer to that is this piece of wisdom:  “You will never find time to have balance, you can only work to have life balance within the time that you have.” 

Balance is something I work very hard at.  The way that I keep balance is to know myself, know my priorities, and know the motivations I have in both life and work.  It is very difficult to be a creative type and then also be diligent in the mundane things of life that are not creative or challenging.  Hard decisions are made daily Jill Levenhagenfor the sake of balanced living.  But LIVING is the goal.  Not blogging.  Living. Jill Levenhagen,  www.blogchickablog.com

 

Lorraine Reguly16. I make sure I do a bit of everything each week… I uplug each week, too, to enjoy life. Lorraine Reguly,  

 

blog productively

I use each morning to improve my body and mind with an hour of exercise. While I’m exercising, I listen to books to stay updated on the latest in my industry. Next, I eat a healthy breakfast and take a shower. While in the shower, I relax and think about my goals for the day. This routine jumpstarts my day and gets me focused on work before I leave the house.
For the workday, I create to-do lists with only three items. These are overarching goals that I need to achieve for the day. To achieve these goals, I try to keep my focus on one task at a time. 
Lastly, what you do from nine to midnight matters. Instead of watching TV, I spend time learning more about my industry or blogging. The knowledge you gain will teach you to think bigger and put miles ahead of your competition. Vladimir Gendelman

Conclusions

 

Excluding the answer that balance is not attainable, the experts shared eleven different ideas.

BalanceforBloggers-1

We can never get back time.  Hopefully, these suggestions provide enough variety that everyone can find a valuable suggestion to use to try to stretch time to fit more in.

Readers, if you believe others could benefit from these productivity tips on how to balance writing and life, please share.

What were your opinions of the interview?  Did you feel gender played a part in the discrepancy of the answers?  I look forward to your views.

Related Posts:

20 Experts Reveal Their Secrets to Blog Promotion

How to Be a Successful Blogger: 19 Experts Share Their Secrets

Your 24 Hour Day is Shrinking

Source:

Finding Work-Life Balance as a Working Parent

 

 

 

 

  1. bhavpreet

    this was great .. and really helping …
    and i am waiting for your post to make money online … i hope you remember … 🙂

    • Janice Wald

      I remembered, and I am almost done with it. It should be published this time tomorrow.

      • bhavpreet

        yeah dear .. m dying .. i think you understand when you need money and you don’t have .. so i just think that your post is gonna sort my probs out … i will be really glad for this help …

    • Janice Wald

      Thank you for the nice words about my post. I am glad you found the tips helpful.
      Janice

      • bhavpreet

        yes they are .. who doesn’t wants to be a good blogger …. and you are a boost to all of us … 🙂 … and please do mention any way if we can earn from blogging .. if you know any …

        • Janice Wald

          I know many. I will publish it on Sunday. Thank you for your interest.
          Janice

  2. Smorgasbord - Variety is the Spice of Life.

    Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    Janice Wald shares the top tips from successful bloggers. Interesting and useful.

    • Janice Wald

      HI Sally!
      Thank you so much for the reblog! I am excited and flattered!
      Janice

    • Janice Wald

      Hey Chris!
      I like #17. A great rule for all of us! Thanks for the tip! =)
      Thank you so very much for the reblog. I am excited! I hope your followers enjoy it.
      Janice

  3. Maria Matthews

    This was helpful but I have to admit I am already following many of the suggestions regarding blogging, following others, commenting and actually reading posts, but numbers are slow to come in so I focus on enjoying the moment with blogging, if I get many views (20+) I am dancing about the room. If I don’t then I simply carry on with hope.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Maria,
      I hope you don’t mind, I brought you a link. My post explained how to immediately get comments on your blog. This will, of course, increase page views, and could lead to increasing permanent readership http://wp.me/p5jxvv-MU
      Thanks for reading what I wrote and writing me.
      Janice

      • Maria Matthews

        You are very welcome blogging is an adventure in itself. Thank you for the link. We will keep in touch

        • Janice Wald

          My pleasure. I am glad you discovered my Follow to Follow Directory. I added both your sites.
          Janice

  4. roweeee

    Reblogged this on beyondtheflow and commented:
    Many of the posts I reblog are there for me to go back to and fullly process as much as sharing them with al of you. Time management is my bete noire and this post contained a few useful tips and a reminder to revisit Stephen Covey. xx Rowena

    • Janice Wald

      Hey Roweeee,
      1. Thank you so much for the reblog! How exciting and flattering!
      2. Thank you so much for following my blog today.
      I am glad you liked Paula’s Stephen Covey reference.
      Nice to meet you.
      Janice

      • roweeee

        I need to swallow Stephen Covey. I am currently focusing on trying to get the house sorted which becomes quite difficult when I’m being creative. These are two very different processes and two hats I certainly can’t seem to juggle successfully.

  5. Rachel

    This is all great advice. I try to devote at least 30 minutes a day to reading and comments on other blogs. I try for an hour, but depending on how busy I am during the day, 30 minutes is the most I can get. But at least I’m making time for it.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Rachel,
      I hope to find more time to read and comment on other blogs now that school is out for the summer. They say it results in great traffic. Do you find that many come to your blog after you leave a comment? Do your stats list those blogs as referral traffic? Thanks for reading what I wrote and writing me.
      Janice

  6. john doe

    I think this was your best ” what the experts think”. Some of them really explained how they balance this problem. It seems like they all agree that is a Very very very difficult task and as hard as everyone tries it is practically unattainable. Family seems and I use the word seems to be or supposed to be every bloggers priority but I wonder if the families of bloggers who spend hours upon hours a day feel the same way that they are the priority

    • Janice Wald

      Hi,
      Did you notice one of the bloggers actually did say that balance is unattainable??
      Janice

  7. vanbytheriver

    I retired early, and the kids are grown. I don’t believe I could have started this years ago. Now is the right time, and I really enjoy it. Success for me is when I love what I wrote, the readers/commenters are just frosting on the cake !! ☺ Van

    • C.E.Robinson

      I’m with you, Van! The balance is what you make it, what fits your personal goals. It’s not the number of visits per day that counts for me. When I do post, I’d like my dedicated followers to be interested enough to visit. That’s all! I’m not obsessed with numbers. Can’t even get my head around “1,000 visits” being a good day. Christine

      • vanbytheriver

        I always feel responsible for answering the comments, and reading other blogs that I follow. How do you achieve that with those kind of numbers? It has to be a very different experience. I’m happy in my little blog community, Christine. ☺☺❤️ ☺☺

      • Janice Wald

        I can’t wrap my head around 1,000 visits per day either, Christine. She has been blogging six years. I have been blogging six months. How long have you been blogging? Thanks for writing!
        Janice

    • Janice Wald

      Hi,
      Although I am not retired, my kids are also grown. I started blogging as soon as they left for college. Like you, I feel this is the right time, and like you, I am loving it.
      Thank you for visiting my site, reading what I wrote, and writing me.
      Janice

      • vanbytheriver

        Yours was a very interesting, informative post. Thanks for the conversation ! ☺ Van

      • C.E.Robinson

        Janice, I’ve been blogging for one year! I’ll never be a power-blogger, and lately have posted sporadically. I’m editing a screenplay for a screenwriter and short on time for personal posts! I’ll get back to it soon! Christine

        • Janice Wald

          Thanks for getting back to me & answering my question. Good luck with your screenplay.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi,
      I plan on coming by and visiting the reblog and seeing how your readers enjoy the post. Thank you so very much for the reblog. How exciting. Nice meeting you.
      Janice

    • Janice Wald

      Hi,
      Thank you so much for coming by today. I’m glad you found the tips helpful! It’s my pleasure to help. Thanks again for the visit.
      Janice

  8. Trudy

    Good article! But I’m wondering how do you it Janice ? What’s your formula for balance?

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Trudy,
      I’m glad you liked the article. (Would you mind Stumbling it for me? I’m hoping the weekend will bring more SU traffic. I’d be grateful.)
      As far as the answer to your question: You know I love you. I feel you and I have bonded over our mutual desire to use StumbleUpon. However, I actually wrote an entire blog post explaining that answer! I hope you don’t mind if I give you the link: http://wp.me/p5jxvv-Ut
      I stick to a regimen which I explained in the post. Unless a reader is having stress trying to follow my advice, I stick to the regimen.
      Thanks for the comments. I loved your Pinterest article on SU. I Stumbled It and may reference it one day in a post.
      Janice

      • Trudy

        Thanks! I don’t mind at all. It just seems that you keep finding new technologies to help bloggers and I’m having trouble keeping up myself, so I can only imagine you! I’ll stumble now.

          • Trudy

            You’re welcome! Btw I’m doing a blogging project and getting my twitter cards done and I’ve added my Facebook page to the blog sidebar and pinterest as well, busy bee!

          • Janice Wald

            What is a Twitter Card? I’ve heard them mentioned but don’t know what they are.

          • Trudy

            It is an enriched tweet with graphics from your site within the tweet plus 140 characters

          • Trudy

            It’s supposed to encourage traffic and engagement.

          • Janice Wald

            The Twitter cards? Watching your video is on my list of things to do now that I’m home for summer.
            Janice

          • Trudy

            Yes the twitter cards, will try with the next post to see if there’s a noticeable difference.

          • Janice Wald

            Let me know.

          • Trudy

            Definitely!

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Angie,
      Thank you so very much for the reblog. I am so flattered! I appreciate the exposure to new readers as well.
      Nice to meet you.
      Janice

  9. purpleslobinrecovery

    Janice,
    Thanks for boiling it down into the 11 succinct points. Since I’ve been out of school so long, my summarizing skills have gotten a little rusty!
    I finally got the real hyperlinks under control. Of course, having a handy cheat sheet means I can do them consistently! 😉
    You mentioned somewhere that you have your share buttons enabled. Could you please link me to the post explaining that? Thanks!
    Melinda

  10. janeboha

    I cannot reblog, since my blog is on Blogger, but this is a wonderful post. People are getting busier because they have options available to them that are, literally, at their fingertips. Getting to know oneself and priorities, and making appropriate decisions re: blogging that allow us to balance our likes, our families, our need to make an income, our spiritual values, etc., all all so important and dealt with so respectfully here in this post. And yes, the time it takes me to leave this reply – which I take fully cognizant of how I am using these precious moments – and which I will never get back – I take in appreciation for the time it took you to write this post.

    And thanks to Sally Cronin for reblogging it.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Janeboha,
      I am beyond moved by your words. They not only make me feel appreciated (so appreciated), but understood.
      Hopefully the post provided enough suggestions to help with the issues that bloggers/writers like you and I go through as we try and make the appropriate choices on how to spend the little time we are allotted to do so much.
      Thank you again for your beautiful words.
      Janice

      • Janice Wald

        I tried to visit your blog but was unsuccessful. Thank you so much for following my blog and again for your kind words. I am still moved by them.
        Janice

  11. Harleena Singh (

    Hi Janice,

    Wonderful round up indeed 🙂

    I enjoyed going through all that’s mentioned by the rest of the experts, some of who are already my good friend’s in the Blogosphere. There is such a lot to learn from each other, isn’t it?

    It’s not easy balancing your life and blogging, but if you are determined, you’d surely find a way, no matter how busy you are. Loved the apt infographic created for this post as well 🙂

    Thanks so much for adding my two cents along with the rest – means a lot. And I appreciate the hard work put into making this such a wonderful post. Happy weekend 🙂

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Harleena,
      Thank you so much for your contribution to my interview. I really appreciate it.
      Thank you for the kind words regarding the post and my infographic.
      I saw you shared it on your social media. Thank you. I am truly grateful.
      Janice

  12. Lorraine Marie Reguly

    Great input from everyone!

    Nice post, Janice. 🙂
    Thanks for asking me to a part of it!

  13. Janice Wald

    Hi Lorraine,
    Thank you so very much for being a part of my interview. It seems like it was very well-received. If you have a moment, would you mind sharing it out on your social media? Thanks. I’d be grateful.
    Janice

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  17. Pritam

    Like to see great bloggers in a place.Its really just awesome.Really great article. Thanks for sharing such an informative article. Looking for same type of great articles in near future. Great Job 🙂

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