Breaking My Blog Cherry
So you know when you have some small project or task that you need to do and its not something you do regularly or maybe have never done before so you put it to the side and keep pushing it down your to-do list. If you are like me (and many others) then that task haunts you for days, weeks and depending on the item maybe even months.
I know with absolute certainty that when you finally sit down and focus on this task it usually takes far less time to complete it than you think it will and yet I find myself over and over putting myself in this situation around things that are either unfamiliar or unpleasant. In psychology terms we call this resistance. Resistance is a tricky, clever little destroyer of lives. She pretends like she’s your friend looking out for you, trying to keep you safe, helping you get your house clean, catch up on Facebook and complete a myriad of other meaningless tasks but in the end you have a longer to-do list and a sense of overwhelm.
As someone who gets excited about new projects and endeavors I know this cycle too well. When I decided to launch my Amber Hawley site to provide business and lifestyle consulting I was beyond excited and I knew blogging would be a big part of my way to share with people all I have learned in my years of business and education. After three months of being too “busy,” tired, and full of excuses I forced myself to sit down and actually do what I set out to. I talk to people for a living but was completely out of practice with writing and so resistance stepped in.
I’m sure you have that thing on your list that has been pushed off and ignored. It may be that thing that would take you 20 mins or 3 hours but with all the other stuff you juggle, running a business, family, home life, etc… that feels impossible to focus on or maybe you have about 15 other things like this on your list so you can’t even figure out where to start.
So I finally scheduled my weekend of writing and projects I was avoiding and here I am breaking my blog cherry. As predicted it actually took far less time than I anticipated but it does take an ability to focus. The ability to focus can be influenced by many things like sleep, diet, stress levels, and clarity of what we want/need to do. Here are a couple of tips to help you knock off some of those projects and break up with resistance.
First you need to decide what task or project to do first. If there is one burning project or task that you think about when you wake up in the middle of the night, then boom you are ready to roll but if you have a school of tasks swimming around in your head then write them all down (if you don’t have them all listed somewhere). Then pick the one project that will give you the biggest gain, whether that is a financial gain, a major stress relief, or time critical and commit to that one first.
Ask yourself if there is any part of this that can be outsourced or delegated to others. For instance, when creating my work/life assessment I created all the content and layout and then paid someone on Fivver.com to turn it into a fillable pdf. You can also have someone on your staff do any research or prelim legwork. Identify the tasks that only you can do and focus on those.
- Schedule it
If you don’t schedule it, it will never happen. Just decide on a date and time and make it a non-negotiable. Some tips on scheduling:
Eat the frog, this strategy from it’s namesake book suggests that you do that dreaded task first thing in the morning so life and resistance don’t get in the way of you accomplishing what you need to do. As a bonus it creates positive momentum and helps you continue your productivity throughout the day.
When you are scheduling your time, remember work expands to fill the time allotted so while we want to be realistic with how much time it will take, people tend to drastically under and over-estimate how much time tasks actually take. So for bigger projects try budgeting between 1-3 hours at first. You may be surprised that you actually can finish much faster. If it is a REALLY big project then breaking it into chunks is a good thing anyway so take the incremental approach.
If you want to learn more about how to make meaningful changes with ease download my work/life assessment (sign up below).
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