September 13, 2019
Well, we’ve been putting it off for what seems like forever… but welcome to our first official blog post (yay)! I suppose it’s an inherent trait. Us creatives are just natural born procrastinators. I mean it! When it comes to shooting, give me allll the pretty things. I will follow you around on your wedding day until my feet fall off. I’ll be in bed the following day with a heating pad on my shoulders and bags of frozen peas on my ankles. When it comes to editing, marketing, and anything business related though, it feels like I’m back in school hardcore studying for an exam. I have to force myself to find a clean quiet place to sit down and just do the thing. That’s my new motto going into 2020:
Just DO the dang THANG!
Thinking of starting your own blog, but not sure where to start? Here are a few tips and tricks that helped me (aka the most easily distracted being in the Milky Way Galaxy) to finally commit and get started:
1.) Choose to start now and then show up.
Okay, so I realize it’s the most cliche thing to say, “just do it”, so I won’t say that to anyone. I get it. You have a full time day job. On top of your family and secular responsibilities you have the house, pets, shopping, and trying to be healthy and active at the same time… I mean, you’re lucky and grateful if you got a chance to wash your hair at all today. The hustle is real. And my word, if you have kids… you are a superhero, and I love you. Please teach me to be as awesome as you are. A blog is probably item number 4,376 on your to do list right now, but it is a necessity for your business. As hard as we try to win over the insta algorithm, what if that platform was gone tomorrow? Where would you post your recent photos and share your stories? You own your blog. Period. But you have to start showing up for work if you want to get paid.
2.) Break up with your phone.
We live smack dab in the middle of endless digital noise. It makes it hard to get anything productive done. What may start as browsing for inspiration turns into a never-ending black hole of link clicking, scrolling, and video binging if you aren’t careful. “I’ll just find some music to help me get started. Oh I love this song! I’ll take a cute pic of my workspace and post my workflow playlist to my instagram stories. While I’m here, I should probably engage and watch some other stories to boost mine. Hmm, come to think of it I haven’t posted anything in 2 days. Let me find a photo to post on the grid too. Oh, wow – look at this free PDF guide for becoming an influencer. I’m definitely signing up for that!” … you get the idea. Put the phone on silent and leave it in the other room. Even if it’s only for 30 minutes without any distractions. Comparison is the thief of joy, and if you spend an hour looking at other blogs to collect ideas, you’ll get overwhelmed and talk yourself out of writing anything for today.
3.) Start Early.
This is key for me. If I wait until the end of the day, I’m already spent. I don’t have any brain cells left to put the energy toward crafting a blog post. I want to eat dinner and unwind without a bra or pants. I don’t want to write a generic “Here’s so-and-so’s wedding, look at these photos!” …I have things to say and want to share experiences and memories with you! I like to jot down an idea or a topic on paper the night before. I get to work 30 minutes early and it’s quiet (I’m the first one here) so that’s prefect for me. I can eat breakfast and think about the things I want to say in my post while my mind is still fresh. I’m awake, alert, dressed, and at my desk. You have to treat it as work and not something extra. It’s a proven fact that the mind is most creative at night and most productive in the morning – google it!
4.) Keep a journal and plan ahead.
I’m 100% a pen and paper girl. I have a planner type journal that I keep with me at all times. It’s filled with my list of things to do for that day, goals for the year, bills to pay, grocery lists, appointments, and everything in between. My husband jokes all the time that I don’t deserve an iPhone because there is a calendar and reminders built right in, but I won’t touch them! For me, there is nothing more satisfying than seeing everything in one place and getting to cross an item off my list or put a check mark in that little box. It actually inspires me to be more productive! It also comes in handy when I have an idea I want to save for later. The simple act of physically writing is something down on paper helps commit it to memory -google it again!
5.) Get yourself an accountability buddy.
Knoxville has the best community of creatives I’ve ever found. I’ve lived a lot of places, and I have never found a more caring and inclusive group of small business owners. From wedding vendors to fellow photographers, I’m always reaching out with questions or for advice. While you won’t get a positive response from every person you meet, I have found that the majority of people I connect with are super friendly and helpful. You won’t know until you ask! Get yourself a tribe in the same niche as you so you can bounce ideas off each other, share your struggles, or just plain rant if you need to. So find that buddy. Tell them you are starting a blog this week. Then, do the dang THANG!
Lastly, and most importantly, don’t overthink! If writing isn’t your forte’ then there’s nothing wrong with keeping it short and sweet. Be open and honest, and remember that you don’t have to blog like anyone else. Just type the way you would talk and eventually it will come naturally. Your audience wants to learn about you, so let them! That does mean that in addition to showing up, you’ll eventually have to show your face. I’ll talk about that in an upcoming post and you’ll get to know us a little better in the process!
Which of these tips did you find helpful? Have a few of your own tips to share? Starting a blog of your own soon? Send us an email by filling out the form below!
You’ve got this, and we’ll be rooting for you!
Hayley & Shawn
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