e3941297e17226345b367b4f61e62e3e98e44947f806b5be70

    How to Be a Truly Productive Blogger

    productive blogger - man at laptop

    If you could order it off a menu you would. “I’ll take the life changer please. You know, the holiday where I get to indulge in the best food on the planet, quiet my deeper self and discover true, passionate love. That one.”

    Reality check please!

    The majority of us order whatever canned vacation the tour companies dish out. Once a year, we take a direct flight to some cheap southern locale where we eat greasy buffet food and drink enough watered-down booze to dull our deeper selves.

    Or we sign up for a whirlwind tour that leaves us exhausted but self-satisfied that we saw it all, did it all and tried it all, even if we did have to drag our asses through sixteen cathedrals, forty-two museums and a dozen cheesy tourist destinations in seven days. It’s no wonder your passion gets left on the tarmac back home.

    Blogging can be similar. Despite a suitcase full of inspiration when you start out, a blogger’s journey into the big bountiful blogosphere can feel like a cut-rate all-inclusive — a giant buffet that all starts to taste the same or a whirlwind tour of the endless avenues you can venture down towards becoming the best, the happiest, the richest, the most SEO-savvy, the most honest, the most strategic, the most prolific blogger on the bus.

    It can leave you feeling dizzy, exhausted and ready to pack up and head back to your home page.

    But there is hope for the travel weary blogger. There really is somewhere out there other than destination blahosphere. In fact, there is a journey that once embarked upon can be that life changer – that adventure that enriches your senses, awakens your soul and engages you in a love affair with life. Here’s your ticket!

    Clear Your Path

    Clear away the flood of subscriptions, feeds, follows, obligations and guilt clogging your path. Let go trying to be perfect, trying to keep up, trying to comment, connect, moderate and post all the time. You cannot do it all, see it all and engage with everyone. The blogosphere is just too big. Let go the whirlwind tours. Your family will thank you. Feed your soul, not your inbox. Feed it with what brings you to tears, gives you shivers, empowers you and resonates most deeply with you. That is enough.

    Create Your Own Itinerary

    Only you know where it is you want your blog to go and what you want it to become. Be open to adventure and other people’s ideas, but choose your own way to get there. If it’s a path that feels right, take it. If it’s a mistake, try another, tweak it, or change course. In blogging, you are your own tour guide and you call the shots, decide how fast or slow to move forward and in what direction. No one else has that power. That’s what’s so great about writing your very own blog. You decide everything. That is freedom.

    Pack Lightly

    Journey with a light heart. Don’t take yourself or your blog so seriously. You don’t have to be the best. Walk with easy steps, with some friends to accompany you on your journey, without being overwhelmed by anything. Let it be light. That is success.

    Take Your Time

    There is a time for everything and only you can feel when it’s right to take certain steps, whether it’s monetizing or renaming, starting a second blog or creating a course – do it fast or do it slow, but do it at your pace, in your own time. That is productivity.

    Enjoy the Ride

    Sit back once in a while and read through your archives and comments. Let go posting at a frenzied pace and bask in what you’ve already created. Learn from what you’ve done, look ahead at what you could do next, but take moments to just look, learn and love your blog. That is gratitude.

    Now go. Eat, pray, blog and let the sun shine upon your journey!

    About the author

      Katie Tallo

      Katie Tallo is a writer, director, motivator, runner, vegetarian and mother who writes a blog that encourages steady, positive actions for sustaining joyful and vibrant life change, Momentum Gathering.

    • This was awesome! I have been overwhelmed as a newer blogger, trying to understand all the technical stuff, subscribing to anybody and everybody who could help me. I started a personal blog to learn, but I am ready to start my ‘business blog’, except now I have analysis paralysis! I am going to read back over this post and implement what you have to say as well as visiting your blog!
      Bernice
      http://bernicewood.wordpress.com/2010/09/14/moving-towards-simplicity/

      • Katie says:

        Bernice! Analysis paralysis – sounds serious. Take two blog posts, get plenty of rest and call me in the morning. Or just breath and it will all come together in time. Happy, healthy blogging.

    • Roberta says:

      Love this post as it such a great reminder of why we blog in the first place 😉 I’m printing this and pasting it inside my blog journal as a visual reminder when I need one…so love those visuals!

      AND I love Mary’s response as well as yours as how to look at EVERYTHING AS OPPORTUNITIES 😉

      • Katie says:

        Hi Roberta, I think this awareness of “why” is our touchstone. It’s where our creativity was born and thrives. Thank you for your very kind words. I’m honoured to be in your blog journal.

    • Katie,
      Love this post. My friend Evita advised me at the beginning of the year when I told her my goal of guest posting: “Tess, only guest post when you are full of joy. Don’t make it a chore. It’s exactly what I’ve done and my posts have been beautiful and memorable without much effort. This was the top advice of the year for me. And really, who wants to read anything else when there is so much avaialable. It’s also a service and respect to the blog owner.
      Another great metaphor Kate…menu’s, travel and the blogosphere. You have a gift.

      • Katie says:

        Hi Tess, great advice. I just read about a blogger who was deciding to take a break because it had become a chore to do it. Big lesson. This is supposed to be joyous and you’re right, it’s better when do it at our own pace, when inspired and do it well. Better for us and better for our readers.

    • Elizabeth says:

      Katie, that is such good advice. There needs to be balance in all areas of our lives. x

      • Katie says:

        Hi Elizabeth, balance is a wonderful thing. Thanks for stopping by.

    • Greg says:

      Katie, wonderful message. There is so much information, tools, suggestions, and products in the blogosphere that it can feel like being plunked into an arms race. Your post reminds me that I want to share something of myself and my experiences that may be of use to others. Creating and nurturing sincere, authentic connections with other human beings is a reward that can’t be quantified into any statistic. Thank-you!

      • Katie says:

        Hi Greg, glad you enjoyed the message. Your goal of sharing, being useful, sincere and authentic add up to a whole lot more than stats. Well done.

    • Thanks for a brilliant post, Katie.

      There is a reality of life as a blogger that we don’t usually talk about. And that’s the niggly admin work that goes with being a blogger.

      I’ve just spent 2 hours answering niggly emails, like, “…why am I getting this email when I’m already subscribed?”, “I never got the bonus you offered…”,”Your video is useless as I can’t hear the sound…”, “I can’t access the free Ebook you promised me…”, “The link on this page isn’t working! And that one’s faulty too…” And on and on it goes…

      I have to respond. Nicely.

      Instead of writing a new post, chasing after that fantastic idea about a new Ebook. Or, alternatively, getting on with painting the house.

      At such times I need to remind myself of my passion and just accept that these niggly admin tasks just simply go with the territory. Even better, I can turn tedious interactions into heartfelt communications.

      It’s all a matter of mindset. We are in charge of joy. Nobody can give it to us.

      • Katie says:

        You are very welcome, Mary. I think at about hour two of your niggly emails I would have turned from nice to nasty. Good for you for seeing the passion through the pile of emails and turning tedium into tenderness. Very inspiring and sage advice for those of us looking for ways to blog our way. Indeed, kindness is really the only way, in blogging and in life.

    • What a brilliant concept and hook! You’re good…:)

      I think the biggest takeaway for me here is, don’t take yourself so seriously! When it’s fun and you can enjoy the ride – it doesn’t matter so much what happens, or how many comments you get — sort of 😉

      When i threw this “passion maker” test together this week, it was out of a genuine drive to create from my heart and my calling, and it was so much fun! “Clarity of life, means clarity of passion too” – I think that is even more so true with blogging.

      Where awareness goes, energy flows, and so do the eyeballs… much love!

      • Katie says:

        Thanks Satya. Clarity is a great force in my life. It’s why I try to eat well and exercise, because both give me a clear head in which to channel my passion. Your “passion maker” test is great. I’m all about energy and momentum. Much love back.

    • Adrienne says:

      Katie, beautifully said…and much needed! It’s pretty crazy how fast we can become overwhelmed…and even crazier that we do it to ourselves! Like you said, the blogosphere is huge, and in the grand scheme of things, no one is really going to notice if you miss a post, mess up an update, or don’t release an ebook as soon as you had planned. A saying that I really like that I try to constantly remind myself is, “Don’t let the perfect become the enemy of the good.”

      I started blogging because I enjoy writing and sharing my thoughts with others. In the end, that’s what’s most important. There’s no use is burning out before I really get started. Please keep doing what you’re doing…I’m loving it! 🙂

      • Katie says:

        Hi Adrienne, I love that saying. Perfectionism can be very destructive. And you’re right, we do it to ourselves. No one is making us go crazy. People encourage it, but we can just say, “no, that’s not something I can fit in right now, I’m too busy staring at the way the sun is hitting the trees this morning and playing with my cat.” Not to say we should all laze around, but for many of us it’s important to live our moments, write and share.

    • Hi Katie, (I)Love Eat Pray Blog! :))
      I’m only getting around to reading this now because I’m trying to work my way through all of the emails and feeds that I’ve signed up to since I started blogging. That was only a mere two weeks ago but it feels like a lifetime,as I’ve journeyed all over the globe, meeting great people and getting to grips with all the technical bits and pieces. It’s been FUN! Like a whirlwind romance! But…l’m begining to see signs that the kids are feeling neglected as I reply to their questions with a crazed look at having to lift my head from the laptop and an absent-minded ‘hmmmm! what was that you just said?’ sort of contributions to family conversation. So tonight, instead of tearing myself away from my desk at midnight, eyes burning like two holes in my head, and going to bed to dream of twittering little blue birds flapping all around the place, I shall go and have a real conversation if I can remember how to speak. In fact my daughters are begging me to go for a late evening walk with them, and the dogs, on the beach right now. So thanks Katie for the perspective, and I’ll see y’all tomorrow!

      • Katie says:

        Hi Rosemary, I can relate. I used to give my husband the wave without looking up (like swatting at an annoying fly) when he tried to interrupt my blogging world. Five months into my blogging journey – wow has it been that long – I’ve come to realize that swatting the air at your husband is not good. Those walks with your daughters are the stuff of life and that is what will enrich your blogging. A frenzied desire to do it all, comment everywhere and be a super blogger, won’t do a damn thing but burn you out. I’ve burnt out big time in the past few months because of that, I’ve learned that I must blog lightly, do what I can and let go the rest. Happy blogging, Rosemary and thanks for sharing your great story.

    • Aileen says:

      Katie, this is such a voice of ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. It’s wonderful encouragement to exhale as we grow our blogging life.
      “Now go. Eat, pray, blog and let the sun shine upon your journey!”

      • Katie says:

        Thank you Aileen. I forget this lesson myself at time, but yes, exhaling is good for life and for blogging. Glad you enjoyed the post.

    • Doug Armey says:

      Katie:

      Great reminder to focus on enjoying the journey and letting the future take care of itself. We can get so caught up in trying to grow our blogs we forget to enjoy the writing which is why most of us started on this journey. What I needed to hear again.

      Thanks

      • Katie says:

        Hi Doug, I think the writing gets better if the focus shifts away from the future and into the now. The writing is the journey and is ultimately what builds a great blog.

    • This is fantastic! Very inspirational advice to just *slow* down and enjoy the moment, blog or no blog. Thank you!

      • Katie says:

        You’re right Nina. Enjoying the sweet little moments is what makes blogging and life so amazing.

    • Rory says:

      Definitely be creative, a lot of blog posts seem so dull, I can hardly believe true bloggers would be bothered to even post them. Eat, Pray, Blog is a fantastic mantra.

      • Katie says:

        Rory, maybe it should be Eat creatively, pray creatively and blog creatively. Nah, eat, pray, blog is much more … creative.

    • Love this post. Thank you for reminding me about the reason why I started blogging in the first place, to be creative.

      • Katie says:

        You are very welcome Kristi. Great reason.

    • Alex Wells says:

      I really needed this post. I was just slogging through my email, sniffling from my first fall cold and wondering how I was going to keep up with all this blogging stuff. Now I feel rejuvenated mentally and ready to go take a bath and get some sleep. I’ll work on my blog with a light heart – tomorrow.

      • Katie says:

        Excellent Alex. That’s exactly the effect I was going for. Enjoy rejuvenating — stay warm, be light, be you.

    • Katie – Great Post. It reminded me of life a bit right now. I spent the weekend in CT with the hubby and our families…And I did nothing productive, but yet I did it all. I fell asleep with the sun shining on my face, right in front of a lake…Not one time, but like half a dozen. My to-do list hasn’t shrunk, but the weekend nourished my soul. And that’s all that matters.
      I’ve also started to let go of tasks that don’t really matter and that take up time. Instead of counting calories, I watch what I eat. Instead of writing down vocabulary words, I’m reading more. Instead of surfing the web, I subscribe to myu favorite blogs and am more efficient at work so I can go home and work on what I love.
      Thank you for this.

      • Katie says:

        Love it Carolina. Your soul is thanking you. I’m so inspired by your weekend. Thank you for sharing.

    • Prerna says:

      Totally agree with you Katie.. Lovely post, as always.. I think the “Pack Lightly” idea should actually be our guiding light. I sometimes feel that am doing too little, ***should*** be doing this or that but then, remind myself that I have to make my own path..
      Thank you so much for sharing this!

      • Katie says:

        Prerna, I love packing lightly. I literally pack lightly when I travel and, am learning to do the same, figuratively, when I blog. You can get much farther, with more ease, and without a lot of back pain.

    • Tracey says:

      The timing of this post couldn’t be better. I’m so buried in coulda, shoulda, wouldas right now that my head is ready to explode. I was beginning to forget why I started to blog in the first place.

      Thank you for taking the time to write this. It’s wonderful.

      • Katie says:

        Seems you’re not the only one who needed this Tracey. Writing this post, helped my head from not exploding too. I think you make a great point. We can forget why we started. That’s a great lesson and it’s why I suggest sitting back and re-reading what you are creating. You can always delete things you wrote that weren’t you or you wrote for the wrong reasons. You can continually reinvent, rework and in doing so remember why you started. Best of luck and keep your head together, if you can.

    • Zeina says:

      Hello 🙂
      Thank you very much for this wonderful post 🙂
      Have a great day 🙂 You made my day 🙂 I will try to remember your tips, to follow my own path, to pack light and to enjoy the ride 🙂
      Thank you.
      Zeina 🙂

      • Katie says:

        Zeina, I love your profile picture. Very nice hair. I’m so glad the post made you day.

    • Ali Dark says:

      Hi Katie. Packing lightly is especially important for me too – in life and the blog. I try to give without strings, take praise and criticism lightly, and not get too wrapped up in results. Turning of WordPress stats has helped a lot with this, although I still have Google Analytics for a once-a-month checkup (a pact I’m in with Raam Dev and Lynn Fang).

      • Katie says:

        Ali, you’re a smart man. Sounds like you’ve set your ego aside and are just enjoying the ride. I take stats very lightly as well.

    • Katie says:

      Hi Lauren. I feel the same way you do. I think there’s lots of great advice out there, but it’s not one size fits all. Without you and your “vision, journey and desires” your blog isn’t unique. I love how you embrace the idea of an ever-changing blog – like life, there are the restrictive rules we learn in school, and then there is the amazing, evolving real life experience we come to understand when we meet our authentic selves years later.

    • Lauren Rains says:

      Katie,

      This was one of the most southing blog posts on blogging I’ve read in a long time. Most of them, as Sue mentioned above, drill into our heads the rules, the practices, the should do and should don’t tips and tricks that I can’t even keep track!

      But this post reminds us all to get back to the basics. Because you’re right, our blog starts with us, our vision, our journey, and our desired outcome. And all of these are ever-changing as well. That’s the fun part about it though! All those rules out there on trying to do it ALL… Well, rules are just rules, and rules are meant to be broken!

    • Sue says:

      Hi Katie,

      This is exactly what I needed to read right about now. It took me three weeks to write my latest post–in between other things that also required attention and then I found myself in a state of first angst (omg this post is waayyyy too long) which then flipped into rebellion (I don’t care if it’s 3,000 words–that’s what it took to do justice to the topic. So there!) as all of the recent posts I’ve read on blogging “rules” marched through my head. Reading your post has had a most calming and re-inspiring effect on my frazzled writing brain at the moment. Thank you and have a great evening.

      • Katie says:

        Sue, I’m beginning to think we all bought into the same whirlwind tour and now most of us just want to get off the bus. Who’s driving anyway? I’m really glad you found a calmness for your frazzled brain in this post. Blog the only way you know how and heed your inner rebel. She knows what she wants by the sounds of it.

    • Katie,
      Great advice. We cannot be all things to all people – we’ll go mad. We can only do the best we can and follow our hearts. Blogging is supposed to be fun – not stressful!

      • Katie says:

        Thank you Angela. I do feel quite kooky sometimes, but then I ease myself by writing posts like this one. Self-therapy.

    • Ingrid says:

      Hi Katie
      What a great start to the morning for me to read your blog – seems like it has so much truth, not only for blogging, but life in general.
      Perfect advice for everyone…. “You don’t have to be the best. Walk with easy steps, with some friends to accompany you on your journey, without being overwhelmed by anything. Let it be light. That is success.”
      Thanks so much.

      • Katie says:

        Hi Ingrid, it’s night time here, but I’m happy that I brightened your morning. I think you’re right. Blogging and life mirror one another so perfectly sometimes. Happy blogging and living.

    • This post was exactly what I needed to hear right now! I’m planning out a new blog, and am agonizing between what I “should” be doing and what I want/am currently able to do with it.

      I “should” be planning out 3-5 posts per week. I am planning on 1 a week. At the moment, that fits better with my available time and the theme of the blog.

      It’s so nice to hear that I don’t have to “follow the rules” that others set out. Intellectually, I know that, but it’s easy to get caught up in what we “should” be doing. Thanks for being a voice of reason in the blogosphere!

      • Katie says:

        Hey Matthew, so glad I helped. “Shoulds” are such a drag. I try to write 2 posts a week. Some bloggers do a lot more, but that’s what works for me. One is a great start and it sounds like that’s what best fits your life and blog right now. There are no rules. There’s loads of advice, but definitely no rules, only guidelines you “could” follow. Best of luck in your blogging journey.

        • LNicole says:

          Hi Katie,

          I’m going thru the same journey as Matthew- trying to figure out the best amount of posts I should do. Like Matthew, your post came at a great time. I’m just wondering: what are your thoughts on lengths of posts? What is your ideal length? I personally enjoy reading longer posts because the author goes more indepth with a topic. But sometimes a post can be too long and I’ll lose interest. What works best for you?

          Thank you in advance!
          Leah

          • Katie says:

            Hi LNicole, I’m glad the post helped. I don’t think there are any rules as to how long a post ‘should’ be. I try to create the kinds of posts I enjoy reading. Mine are often between 500 and 600 words which is on the shorter side, but it suits my approach which is to offer simple, doable advice. Other types of content might need more — like you say, when in depth is needed. Sometimes a subject or topic requires you to go deeper and sometimes it only requires a few choice words. Experiment. See what feels good and what gets comments. Again, I always go back to what I like to read and how I like to write, and now, what my readers respond to most and resonates with them most. Hope this helps.

    • Totally with you. The blogger lives, the blogger learns. I love the phrase “Journey with a light heart. Don’t take yourself or your blog so seriously.”. .

      • Katie says:

        Michelle, can you tell these are lessons I really need right now. Sometimes we bloggers learn from ourselves and from each other. Glad to hear you get it.

    • Marci says:

      Katie, I love this post! Everything from the metaphor to the message. Thank you for sharing your insight in such a creative way.

      • Katie says:

        Thank you for your lovely comment, Marci. Glad you enjoyed the post.


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