The past six months has marked a big change for my blog. I became a mother, moved across the country, and am still learning how to balance being a new stay at home mom. Life seems to be in constant transition.
With all this change, I decided to take a step back from the blog altogether for a while. It just wasn’t feasible for me to try to write posts while barely sleeping with a new baby and being in a long transition with my move to Texas.
I wanted more balance between working on the blog and managing my every day life. I’ve come back to my blog recently with a fresh set of eyes, slowing gaining consistency in that balance that I and so many other bloggers I know desire.
Here’s some simple truths I’ve found about balancing life and blogging lately.
When I first started blogging, it seemed as if there was an unwritten rule about needing to post every single day. I felt so obligated to post frequently because others did, but in posting that often my content was usually pretty crappy. Now, I post when I am inspired and when I have put forth the time to publish a well-crafted post.
Posting less is actually providing so much more for me right now, personally and for the growth of my blog. My life as a mom and wife right now just does not cater to hours and hours of time to devote to blog development. I chose to aim for three posts a week – Monday, Wednesday, and Friday – and no more.
If I can’t get a post up on one of those days, I have opted to not post on the other days unless I am feeling really inspired to do so. If something comes up or if I’m just feeling a spot of writer’s block, I let it go and don’t post. It hasn’t killed my blog at all.
Quality rules over quantity, always. No one is going to take stock of your blog and look at the fact that you post every day. Yes, some blogs manage this who have huge audiences who are just waiting to gobble up a new post. I do not have one of those blogs, so posting less frequently is working really great for me.
Instead of posting every day, posting less has given me room to breathe and space to create better content by having more time to work on my writing. I used to sit down and bang out a whole post and set it to publish right there. I was very impatient and wanted to see immediate results and progress on my blog by posting everything as soon as I wrote it. Now I work on posts, saving my drafts all the time and publish them only when it’s ready.
This post is a great example. I probably started it three weeks ago. I break things into small chunks, that usually look like this:
- Save the Post Title – When I get a post idea, I use my editorial calendar and save a draft of just the post title so I can write it later. I use drafts as placeholders all the time to keep new content in the back of my mind.
- Work on Writing – Whenever I have time to work on that post, I write however much I can/want. These days, I get interrupted a lot, so I may not get much done at one time. I just save it and keep writing later.
- Trash What Doesn’t Inspire Me/Isn’t Working – Sometimes, I have post titles saved and realize I don’t want to write about that topic anymore. Or if I have written about it, sometimes I trash it anyway because the piece is just not working for me. I used to hate quitting on any idea, but sometimes the idea just passes and isn’t worth fighting with.
- Photos – I work on photo editing and graphics separate from writing. I use PicMonkey to create infographics like the one for this post or add watermarks and make edits.
- Finishing Touches – I always, always proofread my posts. I will sadly admit that when I was more focused on getting a quantity of posts out, I would rush and just publish things without a second read over.
Since posting less frequently, I’m actually getting much more traffic and more comments on every single post. By letting a post linger for a while, people actually have time to read it. New posts every day just push your old posts back into a blog post graveyard that no one may actually see, unless you point them to it.
I have been surprised to find more comments on my posts by posting less, but I believe it’s because I’m offering less content to comment on, so the comment frequency is higher because there are simply fewer posts to spread the comments on. I also think it has to do with the fact that these posts get more time to linger around so they get more attention, thus more comments.
By posting less frequently, I’m devoting more time to the quality of my content. I’m not aiming for a Pinterest success or Facebook shared post x 100,000 every time I post. In fact, I’ve never really had that kind of success. I am just trying to provide the best content – content I’d want to read and want to look back on in five minutes, five months, or five years.
The best rule of thumb for me when creating new content is to ask myself Do I want this to be on the internet forever? Sounds a little dramatic, but it motivates me to stay focused on what I would want to look back on. So many of my blog’s early posts are piece that were just filler while I figured it out, but nothing I’d want to go back and read. Now I make sure my content is a little more evergreen and much more solid than my early not-sure-what-the-heck-I-was-doing posts.
However, as all blogging things go, this may change with time. Right now, I value my day as a stay at home mom and realize my days are only getting busier with a little one running around. I would love more time to devote to my blog in the future as my kids get into school, etc. But right now, I am very happy with the balance of creating a few quality posts a week and leaving the unpublished space as a reminder that I don’t have to do it all, post every day, or have Pin-worthy content busting at the seams of my blog.
Questions for You:
- Do you have a posting strategy for your blog? What works best for you?
- If you don’t blog, do you ever wonder how people have time for blogging? I still wonder this!