Wheee so this is a special post for you guys, as Merv and I found out that our birthdays are next to each other. We figured instead of us just doing a post on our lonesome, we’d collab on two. One for my blog (the one you’re about to read) and one for her blog. So hi, I’m 18 today and below you will find 18 tips (9 from myself, 9 from Merv) on how to juggle blogging with your life.
We hope you find them helpful, also stick around for little Q & A with Merv at the end, where I ask her some random (not bookish) questions. Also, thank you to everyone who’s said Happy Birthday to me today, you’re all awesome ❤
1 – Merv
First: Prioritize. Know for yourself if blogging is your main thing or not. Once you know your priorities, it would be easier to work on things!
2 – Clo
Scheduling helps; if you’re not a scheduler then definitely planning posts out and have a few prewritten can help. I do have a series coming on my blog in 2019, Book Blogging 101 where I’ll talk more about scheduling.
3 – Merv
Keep yourself inspired. I think this one goes both ways for blogging and living. You just gotta keep yourself anchored and floating. But not too much.
4 – Clo
Journals/Planners/Visual Planning – it’s not for everyone but for me, visually seeing everything I want to get done, helps me attempt to organise myself. I say attempt because I still have a habit of working on something else, which could have waited. But for sure, writing things out, To Do Lists, what posts you want where are super helpful.
5 – Merv
Choose your people. Okay, I admit that’s a bit ridiculous to hear but it’s true. With the right people, you could be yourself without having to explain everything. That’s exhausting. Rather, they would surely understand if you’re not able to do a blog post because of your life or (vice versa) they’d know why you’re blogging instead of doing some random stuff from life.
6 – Clo
Hiatuses – don’t be afraid to take a hiatus however long. The community is understanding, we get that you have a life. Sometimes, the juggling act we manage to well comes tumbling down. It’s ok to step back, take a breather and recoop. We don’t want you burning out, stressing out or not finding it fun anymore. So if you feel like a hiatus however short or long, would help, take it.
I have been on a few hiatuses in that the only posts I was posting, were my weekly wrap ups. I took a step back from the posting content for about a month, all of July I think it was. I needed to break from it, I was draining myself out too fast, it happens, cause I’m bad at knowing when I’m reaching that point, of burn out.
7 – Merv
Environment and BOTM matters. Have you ever heard of book clubs? Most book clubs have something called Book of the Month or BOTM. I’m part of three book clubs so, yes, I have a few BOTMs. They’re great because when life is throwing is craziness at you, and you’ve finished reading a BOTM, then you’ll have lots of people to discuss the BOTM with you.
8 – Clo
Guilt – when life gets in the way, or we’ve just got no time/energy for blogging and the duties which come with it. Guilt will often creep in, making you fell really bad about slacking off. You need to remember, this juggling act we do, we do because the blog is something we love. It’s a hobby, NOT our job or responsibilty. Our mental health and well being should always come first.
So this guilt you may start to feel when you get overwhelmed, is normal. Just remind yourself it’s ok to not be on top of everything all the time. We’re human, we have education/work, a life, reading and a blog to juggle all at once. You’re doing great! Remember that, no matter how bad the guilt get to you, you’re awesome.
9 – Merv
Speak out. If you have rants about your life, may it be bookish or not, just remember that at least one person would listen. Don’t keep it in. That way you could blog/live without having too much thoughts inside of you. I really want to emphasize this because you can’t blog/live if the other is suffocating you. If that happens, it may come to the point that you have to choose between two and that’s not something to look forward to.
10 – Clo
Procrastination – this is something I am known for doing, as are a lot of us I suppose. My procrastination has gotten to the point at times, where it makes me get overwhelmed with everything I’ve procrastinated so please…from my own experiences. Break this habit now. Before it gets out of hand, before it becomes this habit that’s so hard to break because I’m trying to break it. It’s hard but baby steps helps, my book blogging friends help a lot too. Just…be wary of how much procrastination you do. It can quickly get out of hand.
11 – Merv
Treat blogging as if it’s your best friend and your IRL as family. Both are truly of utmost importance and are treasured! With family, you leave no one behind, yes, Lilo and Stitch. With best friend, you are building the world you wanna live in together.
12 – Clo
Why you started – when things get too much, as will sometimes occur when struggling with this balancing act. Take a moment, to remind yourself…why did you start blogging? What made you want to start that blog? Why do you love it? What posts do you enjoy writing? What posts do you want to write?
Write the posts you want to read and write, don’t write the posts you see others write unless it sparks an idea for one of your own. Maybe your own take on it, maybe it gives you an idea for something else. If you can remember why, you can start to regain the balance you lost within yourself.
13 – Merv
Holding on tightly to your blogging schedule may ruin your schedule IRL while ignoring your blogging schedule may cause a little slip on your blog. Find your middle, your balance.
14 – Clo
Pressure – we have a habit of putting ourselves under a lot of pressure. No one puts this pressure on us, it comes from us. Like this post isn’t perfect? The formatting sucks. What if no one likes it? What if…you stop pressuring yourself? You’d feel a lot better. I know it’s a lot easier saying it than doing it, but it’s possible if you put your mind to it. Once you stop pressuring yourself, you’ll feel a lot better in the things you create, do and in yourself.
15 – Merv
Volumize your effort depending on where you want to be. Say, for example, you aim to be recognized worldwide, or you plan on making this a huge part of your life. Then I guess the amount of time should also be on that rate. But it doesn’t that the time you put is equal to your blog’s importance.
16 – Clo
Accept What You Can Handle – by this I mean don’t go crazy requesting ARCs, or signing up to Blog Tours. It’s tempting I know, but it’s a sure way to leech the fun out of reading your blog and burning yourself out. Be picky, consider things carefully, your blog is your space. You decide what you post on it. After all, blogging duties often come second to our education/work duties. Don’t take on more than you can handle.
17 – Merv
Doing things at your own pace is better than forcing yourself to squeeze in blogging at all times.
18 – Clo
Time Management – this is key. Planning, scheming, more importantly actually sticking to your plan. I love planning things, scheming away but actually sticking to things is harder for me. Yet, the more I practice the better I’ll get at sticking to my plans and schedules. This can really help you make the most of your days, time and get a lot done in a day.
Q & A With Merv
What’s one thing you would tell your 12yr old self, with everything you know now?
“Be bolder.” I was always the shy one. There are stuff I wanna do that I don’t; talk to some people but I hold myself back, wear cute clothes but I think it wouldn’t look good on me, or join some events but I feel like I’m gonna be left out while everybody’s having fun. I’ve been inside a box my whole life and it’s really hard to get out. Up to now, I’m still trying. So far I’m doing okay with the first: talk to some people. I can’t wait to see more progress now that I’ve turned 20!
Dream house/flat what does it look like? Describe it…(ok seriously I’m really curious cause I have in my head how I want my future place to look, it involves books in all rooms…except the bathroom haha)
I think I’m better with a flat. With white walls. White walls with watercolor-calli paintings. Then black to grey furniture. One corner and built-in shelf just for books. The rest would be clean and eye pleasing. Everywhere would be comfy for reading. Also, a cream curtain. No mirrors, that’s gonna creep me out.
3 important lessons/values you learned from books? (characters/themes/plots etc)
These are my opinions, my thoughts are run by emotions…
1. Hope is a fragile little thing. Hold onto it while you have it. Remember it while it’s fading. Look for it when it’s gone.
2. There’s no turning back once the deed is done.
3. Read Paulo Coelho when life’s getting crazy.
Wow, so I didn’t know this post was gonna be this long. Still, make sure to head over to Merv’s blog tomorrow, for another collab post where we share 20 Things We’ve Learned From Blogging. You also get a mini Q & A from me, where I answer Merv’s questions.
How’s your day been? What did you do for your 18th? Or if you’re under 18, what are you planning to do? I’m probably going to be sat watching Supernatural whilst sorting out blog posts haha.