Multitask?

Hardly! I can barely do one thing at a time.

That is partially true. I am better at being efficient and effective when I focus on that thing and get it done than when I try to do 2 or 3 things at once. But of course life doesn’t allow us the luxury of concentrating on that one thing and then moving on.

Work, managing a family, social life and blogging all require attention. But if I don’t work out what I need to do and get on with it, I am likely to try to do everything at once. Not literally perhaps, though I do often have several windows on my laptop open at once and of course there’s that important WhatsApp message to check. Next I remember I promised to call my mum and then there is the washing to take out of the machine. (Break here while I go and do it).

Planning

The secret to being productive is planning. I started the year with a fabulous planner and faithfully planned out whole months and then weeks of activity. For about half the year this worked well. I kept track of appointments (lots of them at hospitals), social events, birthdays and my blogging plans. But then life got busy, I took some paid work and things went wrong. I concentrated on the project (I did the planning) and got that done. I still managed to blog, but found it difficult to find the brain capacity for both. Next I went on holiday. Since then I’ve hardly planned anything other than in my head. Appointments are in the diary (often put there by Master), but blogging is more haphazard.

Multitasking in the way I have been doing lately is tiring. Keeping most plans in my head is crazy as I am not doing things in the right order. Plus I am forgetting important (though small) tasks.

Goal setting

When I finished work last year, I had all sorts of plans in mind. To have a prolonged break from the stress of the workplace. To travel and to write. I wanted to see if I could make money from writing. None of this stuff was written down, which is why I got the planner. But I hadn’t factored in the small issue of discovering I had breast cancer and requiring treatment and recovery from it.

Now though I am ready to set goals again and to plan the coming weeks and months. I have a new planner for 2020 and I am going to use it.

I’ve just listed to Molly and Kayla’s latest podcast about setting goals as well as other’s recently about planning and planners. So in theory I am ready. I have ideas I want to put in place, new exciting projects I want to embark on. This week I have found myself steaming ahead to do one of them, only to be stymied by internet problems. This led to multitasking in a way that is not efficient and fruitful as I tried to sort it out.

But while at a classical music event last night I worked out what I need to do (I find piano music particularly useful for this). Set goals and plan. Then do.

You see, as I said at the top, I can’t really multitask. I can barely do one thing at a time. So I will leave multitasking to those who can.

During the writing of this post I drank tea, put the washing into the tumble dryer, went in search of my laptop lead and checked a news story online. Plus chatted to Master who has just returned from the shop.

Wicked Wednesday... a place to be wickedly sexy or sexily wicked

Reclaiming my blogging mojo

I’ve been struggling since the start of summer to get back into the swing of blogging. To regain my mojo. February, April and June were busy with daily (or almost) posts to keep up with various themes. I love to do these, but they are time consuming and tiring. They also use up a hell a lot of mental capacity to think and write.

So when I went on holiday in July I was pretty exhausted. I also took with me some paid work that needed completing by the end of that month. Despite having my laptop with me and having time to write I didn’t really feel in the mood for blogging.

Since returning home at the end of August I have continued to find ideas difficult to come by. I’ve mainly stuck to weekly memes, but constantly worry that I am repeating myself, sometimes more than once.

Becoming a Smutlancer

When I saw that Kayla and Molly had set up a Patreon group to support a community of writers and bloggers I decided to join. My thoughts back in early summer were that I would try to build the confidence to try to make more of my blog and maybe even get paid for writing. And while as I said above I have done little to make these things happen, I have enjoyed being part of a group. For $10 I get access to a Slack group and monthly Skype calls led by Kayla and Molly. They and the group as a whole through these two media have helped me begin to feel ready to get going once again. During the last call I realised that imposter syndrome is much more of an issue for me than I had imagined.

But ideas are also an issue. As is my frustration at not really wanting to write and not understanding why.

Using podcasts to help me reflect on my blogging

Increasingly I like to listen to the spoken word on a car journey. Certainly longer ones, like the two hours it takes to get to my mum’s. I’ve listened to a number of audio books during this time and on other occasions podcasts.

Yesterday I listened to the two most recent Smutlancer podcasts. In the first Molly and Kayla discussed burn out and the second Molly and Michael talked blog site statistics. I didn’t know before hand, but these two posts went so well together. My first lightbulb moment was in recognising that I have been burnt out. The punishing schedule of writing I set myself from January onwards pretty much wiped me out. No wonder I have struggled to string words together on a page. Both offered strategies they use for managing this issue. I came away with some thoughts for how I might avoid this in future. Or else forgive myself and allow a break to happen.

The interesting thing is that my blog stats took their usual dip in July and August and have begun to recover. There is a definite correlation between writing and traffic, but not to the extent you might think. Becoming obsessed with statistics is something Molly suggests we avoid. Micheal explained the webmaster tools available to review site traffic and then both discussed ways of using the information to decide what to write.

When I got home

The first thing I did (after lunch) was to examine my WordPress statistics and then to look at google analytics and webmaster. These gave me some key clues as to the posts that get best traffic and the words people use to find my blog. I have over 7 years of posts here on my blog and that is a lot of words! Just this year I have published over 200 posts and some years I have been even more prolific. This gives me a wonderful opportunity to plan posts going forward. Some will easily link to the weekly memes out there and others will be separate. The words and phrases such as ‘slave wife blog’, ‘BDSM slave blog’, ‘sex slave blog’, to name a few will certainly take me back to the roots and beginning of my blog.

So what is the purpose of this post? Firstly to share my new found excitement and enthusiasm and secondly to offer advice. If you need help and inspiration then go to the Smutlancer website for articles and podcasts. If you like the human interaction and can afford it join the Smutlancer community. Be kind to yourself and plan. For me, well I think it really is time to develop my blog, write more and pitch!