Tuesday, August 12, 2008

How Much Of Your Working Time Do You Spend Actually Working?

I am sure there are hundreds of blogs featuring a post today on procastinating; with all the activities blogers are supposed to do on top of blogging itself, it can be vary easy losing track of time and actually spend a whole "day at the office" doing no constructive work.

I wish I could set a routine for myself firstly on actually sitting at my computer (I have 2 small kids and a house to look after and I also like to have my own time to relax before going to bed at night), but so far even though I have tried, I haven't yet managed to find a balance between work and play (if you consider cooking, cleaning and shopping as play).

Supposing you have set hours to sit at your computer to do some of the activities necessary to blogging and promoting a blog or whatever else it is you are trying to promote, you must find a further balance between your work and promoting it. You can easily fool yourself into thinking that a whole day spent reading and commenting on blogs, stumbling, digging, participating in forums is work but what is going to be left for you to promote (ie Stumbling and Digging) if you don't write a blog post or article?

While all this social nonsense (not to use a stronger word) is necessary to get exposure, it is more important to create content (blog posts, articles, Squidoo lenses for me) and because everything takes time, you should spend at least half of your daily working hours working (creating content).

The best way to make sure you are not going to over-socialize (and then not have enough time to write that article you have planned days ago) is to start your day by doing the constructive work; if you base your articles on what you find on other blogs or social bookmarking websites, just take notes on interesting content you read the day before and then make a point of writing about it first thing in the morning.

I find that breaking my time in hours for writing content, half-hours for reading blogs, commenting, using each social bookmarking website you are a member of, and 20 or even 15 minutes for each forum is a good balance. If you feel that after 30 minutes of Stumbling, you haven't found enough good sites (a very common occurence for me), don't worry, there is still tomorrow!

If, like me, you don't have 8 hours a day to spend online, try not to join too many social networking/bookmarking websites. My personal favourites are StumbleUpon, Digg and BlogCatalog. I would have added Propeller but they banned me just as I was starting to Digg their system (sorry for the miserable pun). I have accounts with Facebook, Furl, Reddit, Technorati and others I can't think of right now but I just can't find the time to use them at the moment.

To find the right constructive work/not so constructive work balance, you must be very disciplined. What works for me might not work for everybody, but if you treat your blog (or whatever your online source of income is) as a real job, you are on the path to finding the right balance and I wish you all the success you deserve.

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1 comment:

goofblogger makes money online said...

It is tricky trying to balance posting content and social networking. Lately, I have been writing the content first and then with whatever spare time I has left over, devoting it to the social networks.