Affiliate links // Okay, listen up you. Yes, YOU. I want you to grab a cuppa, a snack, a roast dinner – whatever takes your fancy at this particular moment – and settle in for this one. Because this is something we need to talk about. And we’re gonna TALK ABOUT IT. Alright? Cryptic and slightly aggressive intro over, let’s talk about how we need to stop glamorizing overworking in the blogging industry. Woopie.
Before we begin, I’m talking about overworking in the BLOGGING industry within this post. As I’ve said twice in the space of two sentences, just to be clear. There are of course many careers in which professionals are overworked. Especially over the last year due to the pandemic.
But I want to talk about the industry that I am familiar with. And that’s this slightly bonkers world of blogging.
And let me start with a little back story.
Back in like, 2017/2018, I was a serial overworker. I would be doing something for my blog every minute of the day, from the second I woke up until the second I went to bed. My to-do lists were as long as the street I live on and you know what I did when I completed my to-do list?
I added MORE TO IT.
So really I had never-ending to-do lists.
I also felt lost and at sea when I wasn’t doing something. I felt like I was wasting time. I felt like my own life outside of blogging didn’t really matter so I wasn’t present with the day and the people around me. I was always on my laptop. ALWAYS.
Toxic productivity had me HARD.
And eventually I burned out. It was inevitable. And now, my outlook on blogging and my career could NOT be more different.
Oh and I forgot to mention that at the time, I wasn’t even really earning much from my blog. Perhaps £500 maximum a month, so it wasn’t even a full-time job at the time.
You might be thinking that I managed to turn it into a full-time job because I worked so damn hard back then?
Looking back, I could have worked a heck of a lot smarter. I could have perfected my craft. I could have learned more about what I needed to know in order to turn my blog full-time, like affiliate marketing or pitching to brands.
These days, I often see bloggers tweet about how they didn’t go to bed until 4am because they were up all night blogging. Or that they forgot to eat dinner or that they’re exhausted or they’ve just scheduled 46 blog posts and created 893 pins.
There’s being productive and there’s overworking. These two things are vastly different. I admire productivity. I am a HUGELY productive person and it’s one of my best traits (and probably why I ended up in that pickle). But overworking is NOT THE ONE.
Blogging is supposed to be fun. I always say it. And I’ll say it again.
Whether it’s a hobby or a job, it’s supposed to be enjoyable. And you absolutely can’t tell me that overworking yourself to the point of exhaustion for the sake of your blog is enjoyable.
So how to avoid overworking in the blogging industry
As someone who’s been there and actually made it out of the other side of the awful overworking bubble, this post would be pretty useless unless I offered some advice on how you can do the same. So here are my best tips for avoiding overworking in the blogging industry:
Hone in on your time management skills
We all know there’s a LOT to do, so time management is your absolute best friend. Hone in on your time management skills and start putting them into practice as well as implementing new time management strategies into your routine to avoid that overworking rut.
Related read: 10 Time Management Tips You’ll Thank Me For Later
Organization is also key to avoiding overworking. Being organized saved a heck of a lot of time and worry. I really don’t know how I’d manage if I wasn’t organized. Keep on top of things and get organized as heck.
Related read: 22 Ways To Seriously Organize Your Life
Work smarter, not harder
Aka productivity. You’ll have heard this phrase a hundred times but honestly, it’s a game-changer. Over the last 6 months, I’ve had some of my busiest and most successful months as a self-employed full-time blogger. And I’ve also noticed on MORE occasions that I’m finishing work earlier. Because I’m working smarter.
Recognize when you’re slipping into a place of overworking
Being able to spot the signs early can really help you identify when you might be slipping into a stage of overworking. This will be different for everyone, so really focus on those signs. Are you getting more headaches? Are you always tired? Have you noticed you’ve started to skip meals?
What should we be focusing on instead?
Instead of this burn out that people seem to think is so attractive, mindful working, ultimate self care and an increased awareness of our work/life balance is what we need.
Balance is a very broad term. Even my life coach doesn’t like the word balance! But it’s an important concept to consider in this instance.
- Are you spending over 12 hours in front of your laptop?
- Are you getting physical symptoms from the work you’re doing? (headaches, backaches, tireness etc)
- Are you neglecting your life outside of your blog?
If you answered yes to any of these, then you need to step back, take stock and re-evaluate how you work. Trust me, I’ve been there. And I wish I had some tough love to snap me out of it.
It can be SO HARD, especially when everyone and their Nan are tweeting about how many blog views they’ve had or how much money they’ve made. It’s absolutely no coincidence that comparison and overworking go hand in hand.
Overworking isn’t attractive. Or admirable.
And you absolutely CAN hit your blogging goals and business dreams without working yourself to the bone.
So next time you find yourself overworking,
Take a step back. Go and have a bath instead. Watch Sex and the City reruns.
I promise you your blog and everything you’ve achieved will be waiting for you when you get back.