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5 WordPress Plugins for Increased Writing Productivity

5 WordPress Plugins for Increased Writing Productivity

One of the biggest elements to being a successful blogger is increasing your overall productivity. This can be a challenge at the best of times, especially as you begin building a loyal readership and find your duties multiplying and expectations raising. It is just a lot of pressure, sometimes enough to feel entirely overwhelmed.

The great thing about WordPress as a blogging platform is that is makes it a little more easy. Mainly by providing features that simplify the process. Some that even cut entire steps out of what used to be a time-consuming effort.

My own WordPress is full of plugins, some that I use often and some only rarely. These are the five I use the most, and have seen the greatest improvement to my productivity as a consequence.

5 WordPress Plugins for Increased Blogging Productivity

1. Events Manager

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Events Manager

    This is probably the most thorough events manager I have found for WordPress, and I love it. There are a ton of widgets and features available, as well as a user submitted event capability that allows you to confirm all events submitted prior to blog admission. There is booking management, multi-day event registration, customizable details for each day, RSS feeds and SEO compatibility. Plus a ton more. If you want a simple way to organize events, this is the plugin for you.

    2. Blogging Checklist

    Blogging Checklist

      (Note: Even though WordPress will warn you the plugin hasn’t been updated for a while, it’s tested on the latest WordPress set-up and is proved to be working)

      I used to send out an email to all people writing for me with a list of things to be sure of before submitting a draft for publication. Some were great at following it until it became second nature. But many more would disregard it entirely, leading me to have to practically rewrite the post in order to get it publishable as per the blog’s guidelines.

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      I ended up getting this plugin, and it has helped a lot. You are able to create a standardized checklist that is fully customizable and embedded into your WordPress. So writers just check off each item as they write, or when they read over it before submitting. I now have no problems, and it has saved me a lot of time. One small con is that it is very old and has not been updated. However, I have had no problems with it running on newer WP versions.

      3. Guest Blogging Plugin

      Guest blogging is a great way to increase your blogging productivity because guest contributors can provide you with free content when you are away or too busy to blog. However the most frustrating part of the whole process is finding reliable guest posters. I like to have a guest post up once a week, and to try to find blogs for my own guest posts twice a month. This plugin is aimed at making the whole process much easier and faster!

      MyBlogGuest

        There is an article gallery full of posts people want to see up on different sites. You just make an offer to the writer, telling them when and where it will be published. If they agree, you put it up with their byline and wallah! You have free, high quality content with next to no fuss. The plugin streamlines the process even further by letting you search for posts from your WP dashboard, make offers, publish and even alert the writer without signing into your MBG account. Here’s the video overview that shows the whole process within 2 minutes of time.

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        4. Broken Link Checker

        Broken Link Checker

          The longer a blog is up, the more common broken links are going to be. That is just a general part of running a site, and it is very frustrating. Especially as you won’t always know what links are broken and which ones are fine. Going through one by one might be a usability test that has been necessary in the past, but it isn’t a relished one. Thankfully, there is this plugin. It checks for broken links on your behalf at regular intervals, then alerts you when it finds any that have to be fixed. You can configure it to your exact specifications, as well.

          5. WP Project Management Ultimate

          WP Project Managment Ultimate

            WP Project Management is the multi-purpose plugin that adds project management features to your WordPress backend. Use it to organize your post ideas, freelance tasks, writers, etc.

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            Creating a project, you can specify the time frame when the task should be completed as well as statuses and any reference numbers you have (for example, account number):

            Create a new project

              The plugin adds a new “Projects” section to the left-hand menu. There you can see your current projects and their status:

              projects

                Do you have any plugins for WordPress that you feel have boosted your productivity? Let us know in the comments, and be sure to tell us why you can’t live without it!

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                Last Updated on March 30, 2020

                What to Do in Free Time? 20 Productive Ways to Use the Time

                What to Do in Free Time? 20 Productive Ways to Use the Time

                If you’ve got a big block of free time, the best way to put that to use is to relax, have fun, decompress from a stressful day, or spend time with a loved one. But if you’ve just got a little chunk — say 5 or 10 minutes — there’s no time to do any of the fun stuff.

                So, what to do in free time?

                Put those little chunks of time to their most productive use.

                Everyone works differently, so the best use of your free time really depends on you, your working style, and what’s on your to-do list. But it’s handy to have a list like this in order to quickly find a way to put that little spare time to work instantly, without any thought. Use the following list as a way to spark ideas for what you can do in a short amount of time.

                1. Reading Files

                Clip magazine articles or print out good articles or reports for reading later, and keep them in a folder marked “Reading File”. Take this wherever you go, and any time you have a little chunk of time, you can knock off items in your Reading File.

                Keep a reading file on your computer (or in your bookmarks), for quick reading while at your desk (or on the road if you’ve got a laptop).

                2. Clear out Inbox

                Got a meeting in 5 minutes? Use it to get your physical or email inbox to empty.

                If you’ve got a lot in your inbox, you’ll have to work quickly, and you may not get everything done; but reducing your pile can be a big help. And having an empty inbox is a wonderful feeling.

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                3. Phone Calls

                Keep a list of phone calls you need to make, with phone numbers, and carry it everywhere.

                Whether you’re at your desk or on the road, you can knock a few calls off your list in a short amount of time.

                4. Make Money

                This is my favorite productive use of free time. I have a list of articles I need to write, and when I get some spare minutes, I’ll knock off half an article real quick.

                If you get 5 to 10 chunks of free time a day, you can make a decent side income. Figure out how you can freelance your skills, and have work lined up that you can knock out quickly — break it up into little chunks, so those chunks can be done in short bursts.

                5. File

                No one likes to do this. If you’re on top of your game, you’re filing stuff immediately, so it doesn’t pile up.

                But if you’ve just come off a really busy spurt, you may have a bunch of documents or files laying around.

                Or maybe you have a big stack of stuff to file. Cut into that stack with every little bit of spare time you get, and soon you’ll be in filing Nirvana.

                6. Network

                Only have 2 minutes? Shoot off a quick email to a colleague. Even just a “touching bases” or follow-up email can do wonders for your working relationship. Or shoot off a quick question, and put it on your follow-up list for later.

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                7. Clear out Feeds

                If my email inbox is empty, and I have some spare time, I like to go to my Google Reader and clear out my feed inbox.

                8. Goal Time

                Take 10 minutes to think about your goals — personal and professional.

                If you don’t have a list of goals, start on one. If you’ve got a list of goals, review them.

                Write down a list of action steps you can take over the next couple of weeks to make these goals a reality. What action step can you do today? The more you focus on these goals, and review them, the more likely they will come true.

                9. Update Finances

                Many people fall behind with their finances, either in paying bills (they don’t have time), or entering transactions in their financial software, or clearing their checkbook, or reviewing their budget.

                Take a few minutes to update these things. It just takes 10 to 15 minutes every now and then.

                10. Brainstorm Ideas

                Another favorite of mine if I just have 5 minutes — I’ll break out my pocket notebook, and start a brainstorming list for a project or article. Whatever you’ve got coming up in your work or personal life, it can benefit from a brainstorm. And that doesn’t take long.

                11. Clear off Desk

                Similar to the filing tip above, but this applies to whatever junk you’ve got cluttering up your desk. Or on the floor around your desk.

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                Trash stuff, file stuff, put it in its place. A clear desk makes for a more productive you. And it’s oddly satisfying.

                12. Exercise

                Never have time to exercise? 10 minutes is enough to get off some pushups and crunches. Do that 2 to 3 times a day, and you’ve got a fit new you.

                13. Take a Walk

                This is another form of exercise that doesn’t take long, and you can do it anywhere. Even more important, it’s a good way to stretch your legs from sitting at your desk too long.

                It also gets your creative juices flowing. If you’re ever stuck for ideas, taking a walk is a good way to get unstuck.

                14. Follow up

                Keep a follow-up list for everything you’re waiting on. Return calls, emails, memos — anything that someone owes you, put on the list.

                When you’ve got a spare 10 minutes, do some follow-up calls or emails.

                15. Meditate

                You don’t need a yoga mat to do this. Just do it at your desk. Focus on your breathing. A quick 5 to 10 minutes of meditation (or even a nap) can be tremendously refreshing.

                Take a look at this 5-Minute Guide to Meditation: Anywhere, Anytime

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                16. Research

                This is a daunting task for me. So I do it in little spurts.

                If I’ve only got a few minutes, I’ll do some quick research and take some notes. Do this a few times, and I’m done!

                17. Outline

                Similar to brainstorming, but more formal. I like to do an outline of a complicated article, report or project, and it helps speed things along when I get to the actual writing. And it only takes a few minutes.

                18. Get Prepped

                Outlining is one way to prep for longer work, but there’s a lot of other ways you can prep for the next task on your list.

                You may not have time to actually start on the task right now, but when you come back from your meeting or lunch, you’ll be all prepped and ready to go.

                19. Be Early

                Got some spare time before a meeting? Show up for the meeting early.

                Sure, you might feel like a chump sitting there alone, but actually people respect those who show up early. It’s better than being late (unless you’re trying to play a power trip or something, but that’s not appreciated in many circles).

                20. Log

                If you keep a log of anything, a few spare minutes is the perfect time to update the log.

                Actually, the perfect time to update the log is right after you do the activity (exercise, eat, crank a widget), but if you didn’t have time to do it before, your 5-minute break is as good a time as any.

                More Inspirations on What To Do During Free Time

                Featured photo credit: Lauren Mancke via unsplash.com

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