Today on the blog I’m answering one of the most asked questions I get, “how do you balance blogging and working full-time?”
This question has so many layers to it so, I think I’ll start with one post and then continue to share additional tips and true stories in upcoming posts.
About a year ago I wrote a post titled, “how to balance the side hustle,” which gives a little insight into my routine and how I balance everything. But I have a feeling you all are wanting to get into the nitty gritty, not so pretty details at this point – so let’s do it.
I want to start this post by saying that what you see on the internet, is not always what it seems. Sure I appear to have it all together, but there are some pretty challenging times that I encounter often. It honestly forces me to stop and regroup because I’ll feel like I’m spiraling out of control! So please don’t ever think I have it all together, because I’m a hot mess too at times … most of the time.
I try to use every hour in the day productively, when I have the energy to do so. Sometimes work is hard and for the sake of my mental health, all I can do is focus on work, and that’s okay. But I know that I also have commitments to the blog that I have to meet. For that reason, I schedule in time to get my blog work done. I am firm believer in the fact that we always do exactly what we want to do. Even when faced with setbacks. If you really want to get something done, you will. I really want to do well at work and I want to succeed in my blog, so I do. Having this mindset from the get-go is so important (in my opinion).
So let’s jump right in.
I use my breaks effectively
When I am at work, I usually use my lunch break to work on the blog. It is completely typical to find me in my car, responding to emails and engaging on social media. I’ll occasionally post to my social channels at that time too. It’s only an hour, so I don’t get a ton of work done, but it’s enough time to check in on things and ensure my business is running the way it should. You can eat with one hand and work with the other, remember that!
I know my weaknesses
I am not good with managing free time. I know this about myself. I have to have a planned out day, otherwise, I’ll look up and I’ve wasted the entire day. I have a journal that I use when I’m feeling overwhelmed or struggling with execution. I write out all the things I need to get done and hold myself accountable to marking everything off the list. I’ll get into my procrastination struggle in a minute, but there are times when my list takes a few days to get done (I’m a work in progress, y’all), but the bottom line is, I have to get it done.
At work, I try to hire out my weaknesses. The things I am not good at/not interested in, I have someone on my team who is. It allows me to not feel like I’m pulling my hair out trying to figure something out. I also do the same for the blog. I am not interested in reading contracts every day and negotiating back and forth with brands, especially if I have too much on my plate already. I have a great lawyer friend who does this for me. Her name is Jamillah of Pate Law. If you are a creative entrepreneur or anyone who needs help with the legal side of things, I highly recommend her. She’s helped me on numerous occasions! Email me for her information.
I HAVE A PLAN
Planning is key to success when trying to balance multiple projects. I am admittedly a serial procrastinator in many areas of my life, so I have had to be very purposeful with planning out everything I do. I need to have my husband’s travel schedule for the month ahead of time so that I can plan my work schedule. I try my best to write my work schedule around my kids’ basketball games/practices. From there I know that I need to shoot at least 2-4 times a month to get my content together. And lastly, I need time to write and be creative. I wrote this post while traveling back to Dallas after being in Houston for a photoshoot. I planned to write 3 blog posts, catch up on emails and charge my phone during the time it takes to home. I got everything done except 1 of the blog posts. Have a plan. Everything won’t always go according to plan, but if you envision what you want to get done, you’re more likely to do it.
FIND A ROUTINE THAT WORKS FOR YOU
I get a lot of work done at night after my kids go to bed. I’m guilty of being on my phone too much, so I’m working on balancing this better.
Here is a peek at a day in the life here at the Jackson household:
Ideally, when I get home from work, I’m hanging out with my family and we eat dinner together. Then we do homework – my husband helps the kids with the complex math because I just can’t and I help with everything else. After that, we recap the day. I like to know what everyone did for the day, what they learned, if there’s anything going on that I need to know about. Lastly, we get lunches packed and clothes picked out for the next day. When the boys are in their room for the night, I go to my room and work for a about an hour while my husband catches up on his shows in the living room. From there, when I’m done, I go to the living room and say “honey…. are you going to be up much longer?” lol and then he says no, and eventually comes to the room and we have our time together. This doesn’t happen exactly like this every night. Yes, I fall asleep at my computer or sometimes I say “screw it, I’m watching TV tonight” but usually, this is the routine.
THANKS FOR READING
Every job is different, every blogger is different – so I hope this gives you an idea of what my life is like. I think we all have to find what works for us and build from there. One of my favorite bosses told me this one time: “you get what you focus on.” I truly believe that! There is no magic potion to success or finding balance. You really have to be intentional.
Thank you so much for reading today’s post! It was a long one but I wanted to answer as honestly as possible!
Have a great weekend!
XO – Steph