While I’ve been on long service leave from my 9-5 job I’ve been putting more and more effort into this blog and trying to grow a steady income from it. So far the success has been small, revenue wise, however there has been a noticeable increase over the past 3 weeks.
I’m not going to bore you with all the details on how I’ve done this, but what I would like to focus on is how I’ve gotten into the frame of mind to do this, because it’s not easy to get up and be motivated to write every day, particularly because I am on holidays.
So here’s a few tips on what I’ve done, hopefully there might be something here that you can use.
Develop A Routine!
Yes I’m on holidays and dont have to strictly follow any set daily format, however to stay on top of what I was trying to achieve I’ve made sure I get up in the morning at the same time I would’ve been if I was going to the office. I made sure I’m eating a good breakfast, showering and dressing as if I was going to work even if I’m only putting on shorts and a t-shirt.
During the day I try to take my normal coffee breaks as I would’ve in the office, and I’ll break the day up into different parts so that I have different tasks to complete for the different projects that I’m doing.
Write To-Do Lists!
Over breakfast, coffee, while stopped at traffic lights, etc. I have little brainstorming sessions to try and come up with new blog articles, photo shoot setups, presentations, marketing ideas, etc. so I carry a notebook on me most of the day now so that I can write these things down. Another thing I use this notebook for is writing To-Do lists of things I need to get done that day, week, or month.
Using this notebook and the To-Do lists means that I dont forget ideas when once I’ve had them, also it means that things that need to get done actually get done!
Ok so you’re carrying around a cool looking moleskin notebook and you’re scribbling in it all the time, but all it amounts to is a notepad full of writing. Chances are you haven’t given yourself a deadline to work toward.
I set deadlines for the littlest things I do, be it as menial as doing the washing up to things like working on a marketing plan or revising a business direction. It’s also important to set realistic deadlines as well, there’s no point in saying that you’ll have a website completely overhauled in 2 days when most likely it will take you that amount of time to work on just the logo.
Make Sure You’re Accountable!
What’s the point in setting the deadline if there’s no one to make sure you’re making them? Not much at all, so what you need to do is find a way of becoming accountable for achieving or not achieving a set deadline. I’ve found in the past that I’d set a deadline, wouldn’t make it so I would either let it slide or just not complete the task at all.
Now days what I’ll do is tell my partner Cath what I’m going to do, or tell the people on my blog what I’m going to do, or even tell my friends on Twitter / Facebook / Myspace what I’m gonig to do. Usually someone will chase me up for not doing it, and often they’ll give you a bit of a stir which in turn motivates me to get the task done.
At the end of the day you’ve wiped your To-Do list clean, everything is done and you’re feeling pretty good for completing it all, well you should reward yourself so that when tomorrow comes you’re going to be motivated again.
I like to reward myself with a trip down to the driving range to hit some golf balls, it’s also stress relieving if you’ve had to work extra hard. If it’s too wet for golf I’ll go grab a movie I’ve been wanting to see, or I’ll watch something I’ve recorded from tv, or if all else fails I’ll go surf through some of my favourite bookmarks in firefox.
Whatever your thing is that you like to do, if you’ve achieved all your goals today then take some ‘relax’ time.
Hopefully there is something in here that will help you work better from home, whether it be your daily chores you have to do through to actually walking away from your 9-5 office job and taking the plunge into running your own business from home.
I’d like to hear from you now, what do you do to get motivate and stay motivated? What drives you and your ambition?