When life happens, it’s easy to feel like your blog is a weight, pulling you down. We all have moments that are so stressful that we contemplate throwing in the towel when it comes to blogging. Even if your blog is seeing some success, the responsibility can feel too stressful at times. Recently, I’ve been feeling blogging stress, and working through these moments, when there are so many other things in life to worry about, can be difficult.
I’d like to share with you my very best tips. I’m hoping you’ll do the same by leaving a comment below!
1. Have a time set aside to write posts every day (or week).
If you sit down in front of your computer and say, “I’m going to work,” sometimes hours can go by before you write a single post. There’s a lot of back-end work involved in blogging: topic research, comment moderation, reading the posts in your feed reader, answering emails, social networking…the list goes on and on. At the core, though, are your posts. If you don’t post regularly, you’ll lose readers and money, which definitely induces stress. Instead, set aside a time every day or week specifically for writing. Close out your browsers, turn off your phone, and get into that zen writer state. Pat yourself on the back whether you hammer out one post or ten posts during the time you’ve set aside.
2. Announce that you’d accepting guest posts.
Guest posts are great for filling your blog when you’re feeling stressed and uninspired. Don’t be fooled: this is still tons of work, as you have to read submissions, contact people, upload posts, and doing promotion through social networking. Sometimes, we all need a break from writing blog posts, though. Put up an announcement on your blog or make the announcement over Twitter. I bet you’ll get some response.
3. Get by with a little help from your friends.
Lend me your ear, and I’ll sing you a song. I will try not to sing out of key.
When you’re feeling overwhelmed with life, don’t be afraid to ask for help. I think that’s one of my biggest personal problems – I have a hard time admitting when I need help. Your friends (both personal and people you’ve met online) will help you though. People will chip in if you can’t pay your hosting. People will offer to post if you’re ill and can’t manage your blog. People will lend an ear, and somethings that’s what we need most. The world is full of rotten jerks, but for every ass out there, you’ll find ten people who are willing to help you because they believe in what you’re doing. When you’re stressed, swallow your pride and do what is best for your blog – accept a helping hand.
Sometimes, one of my biggest blogging stresses is writer’s block. When you don’t even have a topic in mind, staring at a black white page is first intimidating, then frustrating, and then infuriating. Get away from your computer. Run a hot bath, put on some music, light some candles, and let yourself just think. I like to keep a little pad of paper by the bathtub and jot down post ideas if I think of them, but this shouldn’t be a hardcore brainstorming session. Make it more relaxing, just allowing your mind to wander. You’ll be surprised how it can de-stress you and when you’re not stressed, ideas will flow more easily. If you don’t think of anything, don’t be discouraged. Focus first on feeling more relaxed. The ideas will come later.
5. Paint yourself out of a corner.
Blogging promises can create a lot of stress. You paint yourself into a corner when you tell your readers, “Once a week, I’ll be posting about…” or “On this date, I’ll be posting about…” or even “In the future, expect a post about…” Don’t be afraid to paint yourself out of a corner if you’re feeling stressed about a deadline. Don’t constantly make promises you can’t keep, but if you have made a blogging promise that isn’t working out, you can update your readers with news that there will be a delay or complete change of plans. It’s your blog. Self-imposed deadlines can be pushed.
6. Write something fun!
Blogging doesn’t have to be serious business. One of the ways I like to reduce some stress is to post about something fun. It should still be relevant to your audience, but not every post has to be serious tips about your niche. Playful posts are often extremely successful because it encourages your readers to come out of the shadows and leave comments.
Your turn – blogging is a big responsibility. How do you reduce the stress, especially when there are other stressful things happening in your life?