Sorry, that was a ‘let it go’ bellow. Do you do those? When I feel all restless and itchy with all the things I have to do and all the things I want to do, a good bellow can help me work out what matters. It’s not a scream – I save those for other occasions – but a raw, cleansing, get this stress out of me bellow. Give it a go – really belt it out (into your pillow, in the car or across the cliffs if you’re really lucky). Aaaaeeeeeeeeoooooooooaaaaaaaaeeeeeeeeemmmmmmmmmmm or gggggrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaawwwwweeern or whatever your bellow sounds like. A bellow is a very personal thing.
It’s much too easy to get overwhelmed by life, don’t you think? Some days I feel like I’m eating adrenaline I’m so pent up with the longing of it all. Like everyone else, I’m a busy, busy person – busy is the new ‘fine’. We don’t ask ‘how are you?’ anymore, we ask, ‘how are you, busy?’. But then again, to paraphrase Dash from The Incredibles – if everyone is busy, does that just mean nobody is busy?
Last weekend I had the great pleasure (and frankly pant-wetting experience) of speaking at the massively awesome Problogger conference or #pbevent as it is forever tattooed on my tweeting fingers (Sunday morning a kind soul told me that if you sat in the #pbevent hashtag area on Twitter it would automatically put the #pbevent hashtag in for you… Sunday morning…). I talked about how to manage your life so you can manage your blog.
Can I just interrupt this post to thank all the bloggers who were in the audience on Saturday? It was an honour that you missed the Chris Ducker dance party next door to hang with me. You were a gentle, kind and uplifting audience and you made the whole experience a delightful one for me. I hope I somehow did the same for you.
My talk was basically a three parter, so I’m going to do three blog posts, each with my top 5 tips for that area of blog time management:
1. Finding more time to blog – hello!
2. Making the most of that time – up on Wednesday
3. Using tools to help – up on Thursday
If you love doing something, you just go ahead and do it. You don’t need reminding. You don’t need prodding. The things we absolutely love just get done.
So first my question to you is: do you love it enough?
“It’s not enough to be busy, so are the ants. The question is: what are we busy about?” – Henry David Thoreau
So my second question is: what do you want to be busy about?
Make sure you are mostly busy about the things that really matter to you. Define your dreams, don’t be scared of them. Make them bigger than the sky and then work out later how you are going to make them real.
What do you want in your life right now? What makes you want to get up and do a happy dance like nobody is watching?
Sometimes figuring out what we really want is the hardest thing of all. We can be either overwhelmed by or not inspired by the choices we think we have. Here are some resources to help you begin:
How can I figure out what I really want to do with my life on Quora
What would it take to make you happy on Oprah (yes, I’m going there!)
The burden of choice on Psychology Today
11 scientific studies that will restore your faith in humanity from This Week
Once you’ve unleashed your dreams, then you can do the reality check (and sadly you must). Just don’t let your reality check bring you down.
Whatever routine you work out for yourself, write it down and pin it up somewhere prominent. Make sure all members of the family are on board the routine train and blow the whistle. This train – with all its schedules, stations and routine stops – is departing!
Once your train is chugging along, you’ll soon start to see lots of daily / weekly / monthly tasks that you can tackle in batches. Good places to start batching are meals, emails, dealing with paperwork, cleaning, filing, writing your blog and scheduling social media. You’ll find out more about batching and getting sorted ON your blog on Wednesday.
Finally, remember: eat the frog first. Get the worst thing on your to do list out of the way first and it’s probably the worst thing that’s going to happen to you all day. For me, that’s getting out of bed.