Welcome to my new site!
I’m so excited that you’ve joined me here! As (I hope) you’ve noticed, I took a short break from writing.
I started my blog with a free WordPress site, fully intended as a fun little hobby to do on the side. After my last post, “5 Bullet Journal Instagram Accounts to Feed Your Planning Soul,” I completely fell in love with blogging. It was my first post that actually started to get some traction, and I felt so proud of myself! I decided that there may be something more to this than just being a hobby! I’ve decided to take blogging more seriously so I took a break to get organized. These are the 6 steps that I followed and I hope it’ll inspire you to pursue your own passions as well!
This is not a “get rich quick” tutorial. These are simply the 6 steps that I took that put direction to my interests and passions. Apply it to whatever you choose whether it’s starting your own blog or business, or even planning your next vacation!
1. Write, write, write.
I’ve been in a slump. I’ve felt unmotivated, lazy and unsure what to do next. When I took my break from writing the blog, I decided I needed to figure some shit out. I grabbed an old notebook and just started writing. I wrote out the dream life that I had for myself. Everything I wanted in life. I went into immense detail, even down to a daily schedule (even though let’s be honest, it was probably because of bullet journaling that I went that far!). I’m not going to share the details of what I wrote, but I will tell you that I wrote EVERYTHING that came into my head. It felt amazing just to get it on paper. It was tangible. It included things like getting to stay home with my boys, writing my blog while they nap or play, overall having a slower life because this one just seems too hectic and busy at times.
The bottom line point here is to write until you figure out what it is you really want to do.
2. What’s realistic?
I’m not going to think to go on 3 family vacations a year is realistic or even practical. Or that I’m going to fly a commercial jet when I’m actually afraid of flying or go to space. What I did do was grab the key items from my notebook that I actually thought were realistic, like this blog. Is it a saturated market? Yes. Is it also my passion? Yes. So I’m going to try. I’ve been giving myself every excuse in the book up until this point, reasons not to pursue it.
This brings me to step number 3:
3. What obstacles are in the way?
I’m trying to figure out the reasons why I haven’t gone for my passions in the past. I decided the only way to do it is to write down the obstacles that are in the way and the excuses I have for not doing it. I didn’t leave out anything too big or too small, I just got it all down.
My notorious excuses include not having enough time, other things need to get done first, and frankly, thinking I’m not good enough.
So now I need to…
4. Fix them.
I know it sounds easier than done, but I went through my obstacles and tried to rationalize them. That’s how I’ve been getting over them.
My number one item on the list was time. I kept telling myself because I’m a mom and run a home daycare, I don’t have time. And yeah, time IS really tight but if I learned to properly manage that time, I’d have a hell of a lot more available than I think I did. I actually wrote down how much time I actually wind up spending watching TV or browsing on my phone. When I really think about it, I’m really on my phone a lot, just mindlessly looking at things as I scroll through my feeds. Seems silly to not utilize that time for something better.
Number two was stating the embarrassing fact that I’m lazy. I do an insane amount of cleaning, especially when daycare is open, however, there are a million ways I could be more efficient. Cleaning as I go is way easier and takes two seconds compared to letting it build up and having to do bigger cleans. Keeping the dishwasher empty so I can put dishes in throughout the day instead of letting it build up on the counter. Putting the pasta container away after adding some to the pot instead of keeping it out. There are so many little things that will make cleaning so much faster and easier. I’ve already started improving here, and I can honestly say that it has made a tremendous difference.
I thought I couldn’t do it. I thought I wasn’t good enough. This is something that I will continue to struggle with. Confidence takes time. It takes practice. But if I let my own insecurities get in my way, I’ll never get anywhere. I’ve decided that these feelings don’t matter — I’m going to do it anyway!
Whatever your excuses are, you’ve got to balance it out with a fix. Of course there will be the odd exception, but for the most part, there’s nothing you can’t do! Move those mountains!
4. Create a roadmap.
Once I figured all of this stuff out, I was pumped. I felt motivation that I haven’t felt in a long time but I also felt incredibly overwhelmed. All of these things I wanted to do but…how? The only way to figure out how to make it happen is to create a roadmap.
My roadmap went like this. I want to have a successful blog. How will that happen? I need to have a website. I need blog post ideas. I need images. I need a schedule. I wrote down major items that needed to happen before It could be possible. I broke everything down into slightly smaller goals, then broke those down even further into small achievements to make leading me where I want to go. Once I had my roadmap, it was easy to create actionable steps in order to make it happen.
Did you know I’ve got my blog topics all laid out for the remainder of the year and all of 2018? I got ahead of the curve to try and eliminate breaking a deadline because I couldn’t think of anything to write.
Remember though that your roadmap is fluid. It can change as your situation changes. If I get a better idea for one of my posts and I’m excited to do it, I’ll replace one of my existing topics and set it aside for the future! I think one of the most important things is to be adaptable. Life happens, you can’t control it and it’s not your fault if things don’t go exactly to plan. It’s not an all-or-nothing situation. Do what you can, and try to push your boundaries a little bit!
5. Break it down into actionable tasks.
I once watched a video by Kara Benz at Boho Berry where she talks about Getting Things Done system. It completely blew my mind. I’ve been thinking about tasks in entirely the wrong way.
Anything that can be broken down into a smaller set of tasks is considered a project. Even cleaning the bathroom. I’ve been putting it in my bullet journal every Tuesday when it should be listed as a project. The actual actionable tasks include: Clear empty shampoo bottles and garbage, tidy up the vanity, wash toilet, wash tub/shower, wipe mirrors, etc.
Put that mentality into your project and just keep trying to break it down until it’s impossible to break down anymore.
What you’re left with is an incredibly manageable list of items to do. Many of them will only take a few minutes! Not only has this helped me make sure every piece is completed, but when it’s broken down so small like this, it’s way less intimidating than “build a website!”
Dare to be imperfect
No matter your motivation to follow these steps, my best advice is to push yourself just a little out of your comfort zone. You’re GOING to make mistakes and it’s irrational to think otherwise. The important thing is to take a breath, move on and analyze what you could have done better for the future!
I’m incredibly excited to see where this road will take me, and I hope you will join me for every step of the way!