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The Worst Advice On Starting A Blog Ever

The Worst Advice On Starting A Blog Ever

Creating a blog is easy. Creating a good blog is hard. If you are new to starting a blog, a common piece of advice you might receive is this:

Create a backlog of articles before you launch. That way, if you ever get off schedule, you have a few blog posts to pull from.

Almost every single time I’ve talked to someone about starting a blog, they give this advice. This is the worst blogging advice ever. Here’s why:

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Why This Is Terrible Advice

This advice is entirely predicated on you failing at keeping a schedule. It’s basically saying, try really hard to blog consistently, but if you don’t, just pull a “get out of a jail free” card. It’s a great fail-safe idea, but it’s not sustainable over the long-run. Why? Eventually you’re going to run out of get out of jail free cards. If you focus on just creating a backlog of posts & pulling from them when you need to, eventually, you’ll run out of a backlog of posts and you won’t know what to do. Usually, what happens is people get frustrated, get behind. They get upset and beat themselves up over it before eventually quitting.

Instead of creating an archive of posts to pull from, if you get behind, here are three things you should do instead:

1. Plan Ahead

Planning ahead is crucial to maintaining a successful blog. Instead of focusing on creating this never-ending backlog, and always feeling as if you must make up for being behind, work ahead!

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Go ahead, and write the same posts you were planning to write as a backlog. Next, install the WordPress editorial calendar plugin, and start working ahead. Take the posts that you were planning to hold on to “for a rainy day,” and start scheduling them out for the future. You will find that if you start scheduling them out in advance, you can work two to three weeks ahead of time.

2. Create A Habit

While you are two weeks ahead of schedule, stick to your specific writing schedule. Focus on making new content and publishing, until this becomes a habit. By doing this, you are not just planning in case of emergency, you are also staying ahead of schedule.

Do this for a month at least. You only need 21 days to build a habit. I guarantee that you will notice a difference. Once you’re in the rhythm, here are some tips for making your habits stick.

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3. Be On The Offensive

Keeping a backlog of posts means that you are barely staying on top of things, and when you fall behind, you slowly pluck from the backlog. Doing this once or twice this isn’t a bad thing, but over time, you’ll realize you have nothing left to pull from. This is a defensive way to handle your blog schedule. If you only play defense, you will lose.

Instead, be on the offensive. Be three steps ahead of the chaos, difficulty, and obstacles that come with blogging. Be ready for it. By being proactive, you will get ahead. All of a sudden, the weight of hitting your publishing deadline is gone! You will feel like a champ, because you no longer have that deadline beating you down. You win!

Thinking ahead makes life easier. If you know you are going on vacation for an extended time, commit to knocking out a few blog posts, so you stay ahead of the game.

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Don’t do what most people do. They’re just waiting to fail.

What’s the worst blogging advice you’ve ever heard?

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Last Updated on June 19, 2019

8 Life-Changing Skills You Can Learn in Less Than 6 Months

8 Life-Changing Skills You Can Learn in Less Than 6 Months

Everyone has the ability to learn a life-changing skill not just this year, but in the next 6 months.

By life-changing, I mean something that can have a positive impact in your life moving forward, even if it’s something you can’t envision today. Certain skills we can immediately reap the benefits of, while others will be life-changing when we least expect it.

In this article, we’ll share 8 life-changing skills you can learn in 6 months, where you can learn them, and how you can get started today.

1. Speed reading

Bill Gates has been known to state that if he had one superpower, it would be the ability to read faster. What Bill and the rest of the mega-successful understand is that knowledge is power. The ability to process information faster from books, articles, and reports is what will help us learn faster, and therefore improve each aspect of our life faster as well.

Where you can start learning: Speed reading courses are becoming more popular, as more people realize how important it is with the limited time we have. You can check out free courses like Read Speeder or you can start learning how to use Spritzlet, which allows you to speed read articles online with a browser extension.

2. Public speaking

Research shows that people fear public speaking more than death itself. There’s something terrifying about being in front of dozens or hundreds of people, and exposing yourself completely. It’s when you’re most vulnerable, but learning how to public speak is a life-changer.

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Warren Buffett has given advice to recent graduates that the number one skill you can have to succeed is public speaking skills. Everything from communication, confidence, and sales is developed when you develop your public speaking skills.

Where you can start learning: Luckily, there are great communities out there like Toastmasters that organize local meetups all around the world. You’ll find amazing public speakers that are looking to get to the next level to beginners that are just getting started. Check out Toastmasters’ website here.

3. Spanish

As the third most spoken language in the world, the ability to speak Spanish will allow you to reach over 500M people around the world. No matter where you live, knowing how to speak Spanish is becoming increasingly more important, with the Hispanic population and economy spreading quickly worldwide. If you’re living in the US, this is even more important, with over 30% of the population being Hispanic.

Spanish is also on this list, because it’s one of the easiest languages to learn. Sure, Mandarin is an important language to learn, but it’s an incredibly difficult one to learn. If we were to measure the level of importance and the time to learn for all the languages available, Spanish would make it to the top of the list.

One of the biggest reasons why people never reach fluency in any foreign language is: using the wrong method, and lack of time.

It turns out that humans retain only 5% of what we learn from lectures, 20% of what we learn from apps (visual cues), and 90% of what we learn from immediate immersion. Yet, how do 90% of learn a new foreign language? Language schools (lectures), books, Duolingo (apps), etc that don’t provide the real-life immersion required for our brains to learn faster.

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Where to get started: If you want the most effective way to learn a language, learning from real-life interactions is the best way to do it. There are great websites like Rype, which offers Spanish coaching for busy people, solving the issue of lack of time and bringing real-life immersion to your screen. With Rype, you can book as many lessons as you want, at any time of the day, any day of the week, allowing you to fit it into your schedule, no matter how busy you are.

4. Accounting

If you’re looking to get into business, accounting is one of the core fundamentals you’ll need to succeed. While you don’t need to be an expert, you definitely should understand the basics.

This skill can also be used to manage your personal finances, to meet your financial goals, and having more control over your life.

Where to get started learning: If you didn’t learn accounting in school, no worries. You can either teach yourself using books, or check out free accounting courses online.

5. Microsoft Excel

Most people reading this probably have a basic understanding of Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet. While this is a good start, there are so many powerful functionalities that are hidden, which could make your life a lot easier.

Excel is also a great asset to have whenever you’re looking for a job, as many corporations rely on Excel to organize and manage multiple parts of the business.

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Where to get started learning: With the popularity of Excel, you can find tons of free resources and videos online to learn. Check out Excel Exposure, Lynda, and Excel with Business.

6. Blogging/Vlogging

Blogging is a powerful tool if you want to spread your ideas, build your brand, or grow your business. Since it was introduced, blogging has taken on a life of its own, and today there are ~2M blog posts being written on a daily basis.

Where to get started learning: Anyone can start blogging today. All you need is a content-management system like WordPress, which is completely free. Personally, I think the best way to start learning how to blog is to just start writing. There are techniques you can learn on how to promote your blog, but the best way to grow your blog is to write great content.

7. Weight training

Yes, weight training is a skill. It’s not as advanced as learning how to code, nor will it take as long as learning a new language, if you just want to learn the basics.

We’re not promising that you’ll get a body like Arnold Schwarzenegger, but you will see much faster results for whatever goal you have, just by understanding how to workout properly. And of course, when you’re dealing with an activity that involves physical strain, you’ll always want to caution yourself.

Where to get started learning: There are amazing body builders that are sharing all of their secrets for free on Youtube. You can check out Bodybuilding.com’s Youtube channel to get started.

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8. Photo and video editing

In the digital world that we live in, from Youtube, Instagram, and Facebook, there is no avoiding photos and videos. In fact, social media has increasingly gone away from text sharing and almost everything to photo and video editing.

Where to get started learning: For photo editing, you can use Photoshop. For video editing, you can use iMovie or Final Cut Pro. Keep in mind, there are dozens of editing software tools for video and photo editing, but what’s more important are your editing skills, not the tool itself.

Check out education websites like CreativeLIVE or Skillshare, where you can learn from experts themselves on how to best use design and software tools.

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