With Just a Little Planning

Our Vacation Place You’re reading this on July 12th, but I wrote it back on July 4th, at a quiet moment during our family vacation (right before breakfast). In fact, I’ve had my posts ready about 9 days in advance for quite a while. Sometimes, I write something that’s timely or I change the order of things, but I have plenty of posts ready to go. It wasn’t that hard.

For every post I wrote two weeks before I went on vacation, I wrote two. Both were good and useful. Nothing was a junk post. Nothing was filler. I just did two instead of one.

What does it do? It affords me the chance to enjoy my vacation without worrying about blogging. It allows me to have time to think of really important posts, because I know that I’m not racing to beat the day’s clock. It allows me to keep up my relationship with you.

With just a little planning, that’s what I can do with this blog.

How about you? What could you accomplish with just a little bit of planning and forethought?

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  • Thesomersteam

    You are so right ! It is amazing how productive anyone can be with a little planning ! Great reminder. I always try to plan tomorrow's business today. I think it helps both getting new business and staying focused on current business.

  • http://www.tammycamp.com Tammy Camp

    I think this is something you have to learn the hard way . . .

    Only by finding yourself with brain-freeze looking at a list of blog posts you need to finish before you get picked up to go to the airport in about 3 hours time, will you really appreciate the nerdy art of planning ahead! And if you do it little by little, like you did, you really won't feel the pain.

  • http://twitter.com/CRRTravel1 Tom Ranieri

    Very true Chris. I know the Social Media era is often related with staying up till early in the morning “trying to beat the clock” but my style is get to bed early and wake up early. I enjoy trying to get 1 or 2 blogs done (and 3 or 4 cups of coffee) before the rest of the world is running.

    Probably the most important part of your blog entry today for me was the the secret to keep up your blogging and “enjoying your vacation/family”. Since I'm getting married in Jan of 2011 and want to have a family, and continue blogging, I enjoyed seeing that all this is possible. A major part of anybody who works hard is to always have the time to just ENJOY life.

  • Graceanna

    I remember the old adage “if we fail to plan, we plan to fail. Thanks for reminding us that good habits apply to the new media as well.

  • http://twitter.com/kyleplacy Kyle Lacy

    Planning ahead and being organized are essentially to being successful. :) Nice reminder.

  • http://twitter.com/tejones Todd E. Jones

    This is my biggest problem with blogging, and I am trying to do better. I can often write multiple posts at a time but then publish them all at once (most are usually time sensitive). I have been blogging since 2006, and only recently have I realized that I need to do this. I am trying to create lists and then make the posts ahead of time.

  • http://twitter.com/tejones Todd E. Jones

    That is a good model to follow. I think that it is easier to write when it is very quiet. I like the idea of getting up early and writing with the coffee!

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  • http://www.stellarpointgroup.com Go2Mach2

    Thanks Chris…

    Planning, whether for business planning, marketing, or in our personal lives, is usually the key to obtaing the resuslts we are looking for…but more important – it is often the key to our Peace of Mind.

    The secret to any effective planning is having the “quiet confidence” we are at least moving in the right direction. Whithout that little bit of confidence, we tend to procrastinate – leading to last minute decisions and a great deal of uncertainty in our lives. If I am lacking “quiet confidence” in any particular situation or on any specific project, It usually helps to put my ego on hold and run my concerns past another person.

    Effective Planning and Peace of Mind – Priceless

  • http://chrisbrogan.com Chris Brogan

    Sleep is pretty darned important to being smart. We *feel* like we're functioning well, but without sleep, we lose notches every day, until we're chewed up.

  • Kristen

    I love the early part of the day before everyone else arrives at the office. It's my “quiet time” when I can concentrate and write before my day becomes a blur of meetings, presentations and production/account management issues. It feels like a luxury — time to focus and get a jump start on my day so I can get home to my family at a decent time.

  • http://www.simon-croft.com Simon Croft

    Hey Chris,

    Certainly gets you thinking. Many of us go around like headless chickens most of the time without thinking, yet with a little more foresight and planning, life could be, dare I say it, more relaxing.

    Personally, with regards to any business, planning is essential, you need to know what direction you are heading, what goals you want, without it, you have no idea what success is which could mean you floundering without any hope of survival.

  • http://www.entredaddy.com/ Andy Fogarty

    I could do a lot :-)

    I actually with this concept in mind. I was a week ahead of the game for quite a while, and it was quite nice. Then, for one reason or another (comfort & little laziness mainly), I let then things slip. Now that my community is growing like crazy, so is my need to get back on schedule.

    That family time is so much sweeter when it's not clouded by wondering what the next post is going to be.

  • http://twitter.com/MarieMonDieu MarieMonDieu

    Good for you! I think, working out of the house like I do, I tend to let go of structure a bit too much. My latest personal project is a new blog, and this time I'm incorporating video. Last night, I had my husband film me as I was making lobster salad. It was going along swimmingly until my camera ran out of memory, because I'd forgotten to offload a prior video that I'd taken last week. Fixed that and then realized that I'd not thought out the whole scene, and ended up making the same mistake I'd done before: a wide shot with very few close-ups of the food. I'd had a great critique from a friend of ours, who developed the film techniques used in Woodstock, and he told me film is like real life, only moreso (i.e., bigger and closer). So now my challenge is to stop winging it so much and make a little storyboard, and practice, practice, practice! It's frustrating, but at least I'm not wasting expensive film.

    In short, with a little planning, I could produce a pretty decent amateur video that would add great content to my new blog and keep people coming back for more.

  • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

    Chris,

    Great motivation. I have been blogging for almost a year, and only recently have begun to get ahead of the curve. Using the WordPress plugin “Editorial Calendar” I have been plotting out my future posts.

    Thanks for the advice!

  • http://Geoffreywebb.com Geoff

    I see planning as something that helps me make decisions early – before I'm in the moment and distracted by whims and sparklies.

    Now I just have to stick to my plans!

    Thanks for the insight, Chris.

    P.S. Looking forward to seeing you in Boston on Friday!

  • http://www.ivanwalsh.com Ivan Walsh

    Planning is decision-making.

  • http://www.twistimage.com/blog Mitch Joel – Twist Image

    I wish I was that organized or could find the time to pull a twofer on my Blog publishing. I tend to go with the “nothing would get done if it weren't for the last minute” kind of procrastination credo.

  • http://twitter.com/howardcshen Howard Shen

    Well, I guess if you have a little planning, man, your work will sort of no direction. :)

    However, it isn't bad though, because at least, you have planned a little, which is you give in something from you for your own businesses success!

    Howard

  • Tim Dreyer

    How timely. Thanks for this Chris. I was on vacation last week and did just the opposite: No pre-prepared posts. (and no alliteration) and our blog views suffered becasue of it. This is a good wake up call to taking advantage of the many scheduling features available you can use to remain active even in your absence.

  • http://jeremyvaught.com jeremyvaught

    Just because you say, “you are reading this on the 12th,” I'm going to come back and read it tomorrow, on the 13th.

    Take that Brogan!

  • http://seanseo.com Sean SEO Marketer

    Very essential to bloggers who feel frequent blogging as a hard job and to those who immediately tend to other useless things! And I think this is as simple as the content size is and as effective as the creativity in your blogging!

  • http://www.joshchandlerva.com Josh Chandler

    Mitch,

    I think many of us could relate to that. It certainly takes a unique type of commitment to be prepared when it comes to blogs. Yet, we see what can be achieved, so we should technically make the effort to start writing early. :)

  • http://www.joshchandlerva.com Josh Chandler

    Ivan,

    Made a Retweet of this. What a great quote! :)

  • Aboutdarabell

    Hi Chris,

    I guess I am more interested in goal setting, redrawing. I tend to blog on topics I find interesting. I come from a media family so I am always on. always dipping into the fourth estate. This is my canvass, I also want it timely, of the minute and relevant. My current ideas in BRAND altruism idea are being hatched the way you describe but not blog posts. I will investigate this empiracally I guess Chris.

    As a person I think I operate like Branson , he goes to a nightclub is knocked back as he has jeans on and then decides to build a jeans-friendly-club. I think I am by I am nature re-active but liking some green-housing rather than planning per se.

    You are right though some pre-planning does seem to be the way for some free up the energy to create communities and human relationships, to fullfill greater goals. I think I am with Mitch Joel in mindset but ocassionally if you want to tackle the big stuff soem forward thought is required. I have future in my Gallop StrengthFinder 2.0 put the actual planning I find erksome and prefer if others do it. I guess I am great at some and find others erk me. I am doing this with idea above. I also have Creative in my report so find coming up with original material a doddle.

    Again life is empirical so I will test this a bit!!

    Dara

  • http://classicmoviesdigest.blogspot.com Rupert Alistair

    Chris,
    This was a short post. But that doesn't make it any less significant, and significant it was. I write two blogs, one on Classic Movies and one on Positive/Healthy Living, and this advice will DOUBLY help me. The further lesson can be taken from it for all aspects of our life….take a little planning time, reap the benefit in less stress, more overall time.
    Thanks very much for the thoughts.
    Rupert

  • http://www.ivanwalsh.com Ivan Walsh

    Thanks Josh,
    Someone said it to me ‘off the cuff’ at a meeting and it stayed with me since then.
    When I heard her say it, the penny dropped. ‘Oh, now I get it!’

  • http://twitter.com/dominickevans Dominick Evans

    I'd like to be ahead, but it seems I am often so far behind on everything, even when I budget my time.

  • http://connectbloggers.wordpress.com ConnectBloggers

    I don't like to plan my posts. I like to manage them. Blogmanagement is a better word for it, what do you think? In management you also get to think about your timing and planning.

    Timing for a post is essential. Sometimes I write two posts a day, but it doesn't mean I write them. It also comes together with the thought that a blogger shouldn't post too often or too much.

  • http://chrisbrogan.com Chris Brogan

    Great thoughts, Dara. I like the point about Branson. I guess I'm a mix of both. Sometimes I have the idea first and then test it out. Other times, I react and bring the idea forward.

  • http://stayontargetcoach.com/ Coach T

    Having blog posts 'in the hopper' allows me to be a relaxed writer. I am not pressing to find my topic or complete my posts. Removing the stress, has created (for me) an environment where topics are plentiful.

  • Kate Wilson

    I think it also absolutely acceptable and wonderful to unplug and take time to experience the life that goes on in the physical world around you without feeling as though you are letting down a cyber/electronic world. The world will continue to progress and excel even if it's without Chris Brogan for a day or even a week, for that matter. Live life…daily.

  • http://jeremyvaught.com jeremyvaught

    Ok, I read it. Point well made. I try to keep several posts ahead as well… which sadly is all too easy to do when one only posts a few times a month. :) But then I'm not a man among blogging men.

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  • http://twitter.com/EventBetty EventBetty

    Yes I do this too – write a whole lot of blogs at once. It's often because from one blog you go to another topic and so it goes on. I posted one on July 12 but didn't write it then (because it was my birthday) :-)

  • http://mediamahout.wordpress.com/ Roselle Cronan

    Glad to know I'm not the only one.

    I've started stockpiling blog entries. It really does make it easier during times when the inspiration well runs dry, or you get really busy.

  • http://JimRaffel.com/ Jim Raffel

    After reading this and Randy Murray's recent guest post on my blog I was motivated to get at least a few days ahead. I then had a business trip with lots of flying and decided every moment #upintheair was going to be used to write. in the span of less than 48 hours I was a week ahead of my blog and am enjoying having the 10,000 pound weight of writing every day off my shoulders. I still do write every day but without the pressure that it has to be published that day so the writing is better (or so I think). I also think I re-learned the importance of not wasting one moment of your time that can be productive. Nothing wrong with relaxing every now and again, just don't over do it. ;)

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    Those were the views of various quarters sought by The Malay Mail this morning on criticism by two religious scholars on Muslims football fans wearing emblems that could 'erode' their faith, Arizona Cardinals
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    Buffalo Bills
    Carolina Panthers representation of the devil and beer company logo. Chicago Bears
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