Over the last couple of months, I have found my work life begin to pick up a bit more than before. Writing contribution jobs began to build up and the ones I already had began to require more responsibilities. That’s when I took the leap to take a week and a half off this summer to reassess how my work schedule is made out to be. Instead of just taking things by the day or even by the week, I took a more monthly view by setting my tasks to be completed a month in advanced. Planning ahead is one of the biggest advantages to having a more stress free work schedule. Today, I will share with you these and a couple of other tips for having productive productivity when working.
Get Ideas Churning
The first order of business is getting the ideas floating around in your head. I used to do this by the week, on busy weeks by the day, however this never worked. There were then days when I suffered severe writer’s block and didn’t write. This resulted in reduced productivity and disappointment within myself and my editors. Now, I follow a practice of knowing what website is lacking a certain subject from last month. For example, there was one website where I found myself heavily covering iOS subjects. The next month, I made it an effort to not focus on that subject as much. Later on, we will talk about how the calendar alone can spark great article ideas.
Putting the Ideas Into Effect
Now you have the ideas, or possibly only have a couple of ideas, but not enough for a full calendar. No worries, the calendar has been my main inspiration for article ideas. For example, last month was a great month of blogging for me. Last month was the announcement of the iPhone 5, iPod Touch, and other Apple announcements. This made it easier than ever to think of ideas for articles and required me to not have to be so creative in thinking up ideas outside of this.
Outside of this, I find ideas in every nook and cranny of each month. For example, I know that for the rest of 2012, I have a subject I will focus on for the month. For example, during the late part of October, I know that my focus will turn toward the holidays, including Halloween. From there, November will focus on Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and finally the article-idea haven of the December-January holiday season.
While I’m not planning specific article titles that far in time, I create an Evernote document every month with a list of specific titles I will publish. Yes, it may seem like a large endeavor, but once completed (usually takes me 3-4 hours at the very most) the rest of the month is a breeze.
Giving Yourself Limits
The biggest tip we can give is making sure that you give yourself limits when you need to ensure that you have articles out on time. For most people, this lies on ensuring that they have a deadline for themselves to reach. For me, when I make the document to include all of the article ideas/titles I attach due dates next to them.
Assigned usually a day or two between each other, this allows for unexpected emergencies, extra time on my hands during the week, or unexpected announcements (the next Apple television set for example?). When you give yourself limits on when you are able to write and set times for when you want to take a breather, you are able to produce better quality content.