How to Launch Your Blog and Creative Business Without Burning Out
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I'm a baby blogger, by that I mean an infant. Brand sparkling new. Little Known Life launched in late April. I've been blogging for exactly 21 days now.
What I know now that I didn't know 21 days ago
- I love blogging. I have so much I want to share with you. Yes, you.
- Blogging is damn hard work. If it's not a hobby, then it's a business. This blog is a business.
- There's more to me than what I do from 8 to 5, Monday through Friday. My career has never completely satisfied me. Sure, I'm good at my job, but it's not my soul's calling.
- I can only absorb so much information. (I have 216 blog and creative business ideas, tasks, and resources on my WorkFlowy list at this very moment.) It's a bit overwhelming. Despite my best attempts, I can't cram the whole world of blogging knowledge in my brain.
- It's not easy to get traffic or make money from a blog. Not that I thought it would be easy. But deep inside there's still this little unicorn who pops up sometimes and sprinkles rainbow glitter in my eyes. It ain't all glitter, unicorns, and rainbows, folks. And I have yet to break the internet.
- I'll work like mad on something I love. As in: Forgetting to eat. Skipping the shower. Losing sleep. That kind of mad work. Hungry, stinky, and tired is not a good look for me.
- I'm going to burn out soon, if I don't do things differently.
Why I'm already approaching blogger burn out
We're friends. So, I'll own up to a few things here. This is how I do things. Sigh. It's not the first time.
I get super-atomic-wedgie excited about a new creative venture (blog), and I dive in, before I even know how to swim. I dive in and grab as many lifesaving devices (resources, courses, Facebook groups, e-books) as I can. I try to learn as much as I can, as fast as I can. At the same time, I try to do all of the things.
Then I usually: a) drown in all the info, or b) jump out of the deep end and retreat to the baby pool with my floaties and my binky. (Don't hate. I loved my binky.) Sad story. True story. It's my pattern.
How I'm not going to burn out this time
I need an option c because good old a and b aren't cutting it this time. I refuse to fail or give up without really trying, and so should you.
The swim (or at least float) plan
- Get real: Let's set the baseline at reality. I have a full-time day job, a family, and I'm finishing up grad school. And I have to sleep too. Dedicating 40 to 60 hours a week to my creative business isn't happening right now.
- Expectations = realistic: If I can't work full-time on the creative business, it's going to take me at least twice as long to progress. Ouch. That hurt to write, but it's true.
- Info capturing: All of that info I've collected? It's going to one of three places: Google Drive (in blog-related folders); my WorkFlowy master-list - into the appropriate category; or if it's printed, it goes in my blog binder.
- Streamlined to-do: I can't do everything, and I shouldn't. So, I'll focus on key areas:
- Publish at least one meaty blog post a week.
- Send one weekly email to subscribers.
- Pitch and write at least one guest post a month to help build traffic.
- Focus on Facebook and Pinterest. No other social media platforms for now.
- Make time for creating high-value content beyond blog posts, such as online courses and e-books.
- Begin building multiple income streams, mainly: Affiliate marketing, paid content and courses, and freelance creative services.
- Time for learning: I've signed up for several courses, some free, some paid. Instead of jumping between them, I'm going to treat these like college courses and give myself a schedule.
- Set up domino goals: Let me just put this out there - I want to earn enough income to leave my day job within one year. I said it. It's a big goal. Pretty aggressive, considering I can only dedicate part of my time to the business.
- I've already knocked over the first domino: I launched this blog, and I've been taking actions to grow it and build an audience every single day. I need to set both short-term and long-term goals (dominoes), and I'll share those soon.
- Rest and recharge: We all need a break. I'm committing to at least one blog/business free day a week. I'm also committing to not waiting until everything is perfect to GO and to being kind to myself during the process.
Have you experienced burn out in your career, blog, or creative business? If so, how did you deal with it? Please share in the comments.
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