Mince pies and magic

24 December

It’s time to pause and eat some mince pies! But first, I want to thank all of the people I have worked with this year; both colleagues and clients and readers of my blog. I also want to leave you with a bouncy thought for the coming year…

Do you share your ideas with others? If you’re thinking about starting a blog in 2016 – or writing posts on LinkedIn – or even commenting on industry forums; this post is for you.

You probably don’t see the world like everyone else – that would be boring! This magical video made me question how I see the world. We all see magic that other people overlook. Your view-point and ideas can help other people. Is it time for you to make a dent in the world? Or build your reputation as an expert in your field?

I’m encouraging you to be brave and share your ideas and creativity with others. Start some exciting conversations n 2016! I can help you plan or create that content. Let me know if you’d like some help.

Three Thought Bubbles will re-open on 11th January. I wish you all a relaxing holiday with plenty of digital detoxing!

Why blogging is not about finding your voice

18 August

New bloggers are encouraged to find their voice but what does that mean exactly? I take a different approach to this metaphor when I train owners how to write a business blog. I believe that creating engaging content is about developing, rather than finding your voice. There is a subtle difference which I’d like to discuss with you today.

Develop your brand voice through business blogging

What if you approached your online business communication in a different way? If you allow yourself to relax a little, you will realise something important – The goal isn’t to have the loudest voice on the internet. It’s to have a voice: your voice.

Publishing content online is not purely for other people to read. It’s about developing a relationship with your own voice and ideas. Blogging helps you to find ways to express your ideas to yourself first and then to others.

Creating valuable content is not about seeking validation from customers and peers (although you need to be aware of their needs). It’s about exploring ideas that excite you from start to finish. Sometimes that can be a messy process! So much of what we share online is tightly edited. Ideas need space to develop and grow. Today I am encouraging you to use this online platform to own and voice your ideas publicly.

Over time, your blog can become a living business plan as you actively explore new directions. Interactive feedback is a great way to pitch new ideas or products and make sure you are on track. Clear patterns will show up which might have otherwise gone unnoticed.

Whether you are a sole trader or a larger company, it is your job to make your business ‘findable’. How are you helping search engines — and most importantly, people, to find your business on the web?

 

Let’s make friends with the idea of business blogging first! Simplifying your decision to blog into 5 simple steps.

5 January

Blogging is great for business but taking the first leap can feel scary – I totally understand that! I train business owners how to confidently tell their story on the web. Today, I’m simplifying your decision to blog into 5 simple steps. Let’s make friends with the idea first and demystify what’s involved!

tips-to-help-you-launch-your-business-blog-1

I know you’re scared! Listen to your fears.

Give them a name. Write them down. (See if you can laugh at them – optional). What other things have you mastered recently that stretched you? Give yourself credit for these things! Now, what is your real fear here?

Inspiring post: This post covers the concerns of one of my past clients “5 fears about blogging and how to tackle them”.

Result: Blogging will help you to overcome your fears of ‘putting yourself out there’.

 5 Tips to help you launch your business blog

Who’s telling your business story? It’s time to own your online identity!

Is the outside-in view of your business the same as the inside out? Can you improve how your brand is experienced on the web? Google your business name and see what results come up. Now it’s time for you to create the content that you want people to discover about you.

Inspiring post: Irish butchers are blogging brilliantly

Result: You get to influence your ‘up to date’ online reputation.

5 tips to help you launch your business blog.

“I’m going to do this” – commit to writing a business blog!

Well done – what’s next? Observe what you like and dislike on the web. What brands do you feel a connection with? What makes you click away? Start collecting these examples to inspire you. Pick a name for your blog. Get advice on choosing a blogging platform such as Blogger or WordPress. Decide whether you will host your blog yourself. Keep asking for help!

Inspiring post; Your 30 day challenge to start your blog.

Result: You value your own opinions, beliefs and skills and are confident to share them.

5 tips to help you launch your business blog.

Create a plan – Who are you writing this blog for and what do they need help with?

A blog is like a living business plan – it literally highlights what you do best. But first you have to spend time coming up with a flexible plan and strategy. This guide will make it easy to create content that your customers want to read.

Result: Your blogging plan makes your blog effective but it also makes it easier and more fun for you to write! Tomas

5 tips to help you launch your business blog

Treat yourself – place value on learning this new skill.

As a blogger, you will need patience as well as a willingness to learn from your mistakes. That sentence is worth re-reading!

There is so much help and support out there. Treat yourself to books, take on and offline training courses, get to know other bloggers. The brilliant thing about blogging is that you can learn at your pace and in bite-sized modules.

Inspiring post: How do you feel about learning a new skill?

Result: You are upskilling and adding value to your skill-set.

I train business owners how to write an authentic blog. I believe that we all need to become more human on the web. And we need to own our online brand – that means hosting our content rather than relying on platforms like Facebook and Twitter that might disappear tomorrow!

Here are some posts from the Three Thought Bubbles blog to inspire you:

  • “5 fears about business blogging and how to tackle them”
  • How to find time to blog
  • Surviving the competition – clue; it’s not all about you!
  • Your 30 day challenge to start your blog
  • Feeling like a child in a sweet shop with Heston Blumenthal
  • 5 reasons why a business blog is better than a Facebook page
  • Recommended reading Blogging for creatives by Robin Houghton

    I can help you do this – I give workshops and one to one training on how to write a business blog. I will be your supportive coach and accountability buddy.

    I understand that you may need some reassurance before making your decision – now is a great time to start that conversation with me. Let’s chat about the best training style for you. Read about Three Thought Bubbles training options on the blog – all one to one sessions are customised to suit your needs.

     

    Blogging tips – shake up the world with the word ‘why’

    18 November

    The word ‘why’ shakes up our world – it helps us find out who we are and what excites us! There is a constant stream of whys rolling through our mind every day. I’m here to help bloggers (newbies and seasoned ones) to understand how important this word is. Why do you like certain content, brands or experiences and why do you dislike others? In order to create great content, you first need to examine what you like and don’t like.

    A big shout out to John-Paul Flintoff as his sketch below was the trigger for this post. What a great question to get us started! Why do you have favourite or least favourite foods? I’m encouraging you to practice your ‘why’ muscle!
    Illustration by John-Paul Flintoff

    I’m going to show you ways to catalogue this information to inspire your own writing and branding. Your likes and dislikes may be completely different to mine. That’s what this exercise is all about!

    I started writing about the things that excite and annoy me and then I had this idea – I’ve been talking about making a podcast for a while so this is the perfect topic! Here’s some of the things I’ll be talking about –

    I like… honesty

    Informal writing styles

    Simplicity

    Thought-provokers

    Fun and humour

    Variety

    Business stories

    And visually attractive brands

    Now, what do you like?

    Let’s get you started with some practical action steps. I am constantly researching and saving content and find that Google Docs or Evernote are great tools for this. Below is a simple example to show you how to create categories to save links in. I have included Good design, Good ‘About’ or bio pages, Fresh approach, Clear calls to action, Captivating post titles, Competitors, Striking visual ideas and Mixed media content. You create categories for things that inspire you. Include some negatives in there too! Simply save the links and an explanation in each case.

    Tools for bloggers

    How does this help you to blog?
    You’ll soon get a clear sense of what you like and don’t like on the web. This will help you design your content in every sense of the word. And you’ll have more fun with it too, When you’re passionate about your writing, it shows!

    Tips and takeaways for you;
    Know what you like and dislike on the web. Use that as a way to inspire what you create. Awareness is the first step!If you’d like help with that, give me a shout. I train business owners how to tell their story on and off-line.

    Credits:
    Connect with John-Paul Flintoff – WebsiteTwitter
    .

    We all have a magic skill

    31 October

    Job titles bore and frighten me! And yet, we must clearly describe what our skills are. I train businesses to be more human on the web (through blogging, strong branding and super user experience).

    ...But my key skill is as a conversation starter.

    If we work together, I’ll ask you different questions than you normally ask yourself. New stories will unfold. I get people re-excited about what they love to do. Why is that so important?


    At times, I need the help that I offer other people. But I’m not always the right person to ask! As business owners, we need constructive, outside support. We get stuck in our own way of thinking. And ‘stuck’ is not a good feeling! Today I’m offering to give you one to one training on any or all of the skills below. You choose.

    What does your business need help with?

    Overview of your brand story and message

    My blogging training always starts by diving into who you are and why you are doing what you’re doing! Many people feel that they are clear on this but it’s amazing what insights come from some focussed brainstorming. I call this ‘Word Play’. I guarantee this will be a fun exercise!

    Your About page

    Your about page is one of the most important elements on your website. It’s also one of the most difficult pieces to write! Your customers want to make an emotional connection with you and this is the perfect place to tell your story. I can help you take full advantage of this space. Remember (like your website and blog) this is a living document that needs to be regularly edited and updated. It gets easier with practice!

    Content planning and archiving

    As a blogger myself, I realise that one of the hardest parts can be choosing subjects to write about. Or maybe you have so many ideas that you need help organising them and giving them structure? I can help you create a system so that you can focus on your writing.

    Entertaining your readers
    – I’ll also show you how to include a variety of different media into your posts; from audio to video.

    User experience

    We all need an ‘outside in’ view of our business. I always recommend asking customers or people you don’t know to interact with your site. We need to hold our customers by the hand and make it easy for them to find what they want. We also need to guide them by making it clear what actions we’d like them to take. I can help you make your website an even more useful and pleasant place to visit!

    “Your business is about you but only in the context of how you can help your customer”

    Strategy

    What is your blogging strategy? Have you set specific goals? I can help ensure that the messages you create on all of your social platforms are working effectively for you.

    Writing for the web

    I have studied how we read content online and how we should write for an online audience. I canI train businesses to be more human on the web (through blogging, strong branding and super user experience). offer advice on both visual and written elements.

    Creating memorable graphics for your blog

    I recommend a free and simple to use online image editor to create striking visuals. I can show you how to create collages with memorable text captions. These can then be re-purposed for your Twitter, Facebook or Google+ feeds.

    Let’s chat about what you need help with – my classes are customised to suit you and your business. Leave me a comment below or you’ll find my contact details on the site.

    .

    Morocco didn’t steal my heart

    23 September

    I’m just back from a trip to Morocco and I doubt if I’ll be going back. This is not a brag or moan about my holiday – it’s an observation about how I like to be treated as a consumer. If I close my eyes, I can smell the warm sweet air that surrounded me in the courtyard of my riad. I’m hypnotised by the magnetic patterns and the dusty pink colours of the narrow, medieval streets. But my lasting memory is of being hassled to buy stuff. “Eat here”, “Look at my shop”, “What price will you pay?” Being in Morocco made me realise how important it is to be able to browse and choose on my own terms. If I need help, then I’ll ask for it. These ideas are at the core of my blogging training. I believe that business is about understanding and respecting people.

    Visiting Morocco

    That’s not to say that I’m a wuss when it comes to travel. The more far-flung and chaotic, the better, but this culture clashes with my values when it comes to selling. This is why I teach businesses how to build trust with their customers through blogging. Business is not about being shouty any more. I’d have my work cut out for me in Morocco! Some people love this theatre – it all depends on what you’re used to!

    I train people how to be more human with their business on the web. Here are 3 tips to get you thinking differently:

    Get to know your customers. Why should they care about you?
    Share the personality of your business. Start with a really good ‘About’ page like Greenside Up. Or read about Linda’s business journey – she is a Virtual Assistant at Flynn Admin.

    Make it easy for people to connect with you, ask you a question or find out what to do next.

    Encourage people to chat with you on your social platforms. Make your social icons visible and the process easy to follow. This hilarious short film shows us how frustrating and idiotic our online experiences can be.

    Show that you ‘get’ your customers.

    Show me that you understand what I need help with. Irish architect Eva Byrne takes the fear and confusion out of planning a house build. Runnerbean Walking Tours answers your questions before you book a tour.

    Let’s stop yelling about what we do! Do great things rather than talking about them. People will naturally spread the word with others once they get to know and respect you. How about you? Are you tired of people asking you to ‘like’ or ‘share’ things? Or do you let it wash over you? [edited to say that I realise the irony of my sharing buttons below this post – they are there if you feel like sharing the ideas in this article!]

    Photo credit:
    Images from my instagram account – aislingloves
    .

    Why unsubscribe is my favourite new word

    9 September

    Yesterday my email inbox almost pushed me over the edge. Do you ever get that feeling? All the urgent messages had been dealt with, but there was still a huge group of emails that I needed to take action on. I’m reading lots about minimalism lately and it appeals to me on so many levels. The internet is a fantastic resource but it can also make us feel overwhelmed. Well, it’s been having that effect on me lately! I want to tell you why ‘unsubscribe’ is my new favourite word.

    As I sifted through those 400+ emails, I noticed that many were newsletters that I had subscribed to. Obviously, they all interested me at the time I signed up. But when do we get the time to read all of them? I made a brave decision…

    Unsubscribe

    I ruthlessly culled my list! I found that each time I hit the ‘unsubscribe’ button that I felt happier. It was like doing a spring-clean on a room in my house. Having fewer things to think about makes us feel calmer. And if you’re running a business, that’s really important.

    I’m not saying that newsletters are not valuable – I still subscribe to the ones that entertain me and teach me interesting stuff. But I’m exploring the idea of reducing distractions and noise.

    When I train businesses how to write a business blog, one of the major concerns people have is about the time it will take. I totally understand this. But can you honestly account for all of your working day? You’d probably be surprised (or not!) by how much time is lost through checking email or aimlessly chatting on facebook or Twitter. That’s time that could be spent more wisely!

    Here are some articles that have influenced me recently. They’ve made me think about how we need to carefully choose how we spend our time.

    Claire Burge – the productivity coach and life without email champion!
    How I Gave up Email and Reclaimed 3 Hours a Day I’m not brave enough to do this yet but I’m finding ways to reduce the amount of emails that land in my inbox!

    mnmlist: blog advice on living a minimalist life by Leo Babauta
    The art of brief emails and What twitter needs to add next. Nothing. These articles remind me of the power of simplicity.

    Melanie Biehle – an editorial and brand content creator

    You’re My Obsession: “Slow” Blogging + Mindful Social Media Melanie shares an honest post about her struggle with social media. She sums it up perfectly when she says ‘You don’t have to do it all’.

    Do you sometimes feel overwhelmed by social media and the time it takes? Here are some tips that work for me:

    Realise that all of us are juggling our time too! Chat with others and find out what works for them. Get out and have more coffee dates!

  • Look at how you spend your day. Try the Pomodoro method (found in this post) to measure your results!
  • Reduce noise – cull your email subscription list or the people you ‘follow’ online. Only read content that is relevant and excites you. Be aware of how much time you spend/lose on social sites during the day.
  • Make time to for social media in the same way you plan the rest of your business. I recommend putting aside a couple of hours each week to write a blog post. Make it a regular habit.
  • My biggest piece of advice is to slow down and make a conscious decision about what content you consume and share. Two great blog posts a month is better than 10 bland ones. Let’s edit ourselves every day too!

    What do you think?

    Blogger spotlight – Eva Dorney

    8 July

    In this new series, I’m thrilled to interview some of my Three Thought Bubbles, blog students. They have kindly agreed to tell their story, share their experience and inspire others to start writing a blog. If you want to learn something new, it helps to talk to someone who has been there before you. I’m really grateful to each of them for baring their souls; I’m very proud of them too!

    Eva Dorney Goldsmith Dublin

    Eva Dorney is an Irish goldsmith who I’ve been a fan of for a long time. Well before I set up Three Thought Bubbles, I interviewed her for my previous business blog, Rangoli. I was totally intrigued by one part of her business, which involves taking old, sentimental pieces of jewellery and giving them a stylish re-birth! But that’s just the start of what she can create!

    I think that Eva works magic with metal and gemstones. She gets inspired by listening to customers – her creations are literally fused with stories and memories. Eva already had a Facebook page but wanted a more personal space to share her stories – a blog was the perfect solution! Below is Eva’s gorgeous showroom in Windy Arbour. Let’s hear more about how she started blogging and how it has increased her business.

    Eva Dorney goldsmith studio

    Hi Eva! Why did you decide to write a blog and do you like having your own space to share your designs?

    Initially I was sharing images to inspire confidence and create a body of work that people could peruse, but within a few months of starting my business I realized that I wanted to share more than just images of finished work with people. I really enjoy the personal interaction involved in creating one of a kind pieces for people and I wanted to convey that. I figured that if I was curious to know how things were made then surely others, no matter how few, would be too.

    Before I set up my current website I used facebook as my substitute blog. It served me well, but I was itching to get all those stories under one roof so to speak and importantly in one searchable format. Having a static brochure website was standing in my way, but all that changed over the course of one very productive weekend in March when I built my new site and started the blog. Since then I’ve been writing about new and old projects, sharing people’s stories and the processes involved in making one of a kind jewellery.

    How do you feel about sharing your creative process or ‘putting yourself out there’?

    I have no problem with it at all. I come from a background where you share your knowledge rather than protecting it like a state secret. However I try to make my posts more overview than tutorial, not because of a desire to hide any knowledge, rather so as not to lose people in a technical mire. Ultimately I’m writing for the curious mind rather than the jewellery practitioner, though if they find it useful reading that’s great too.

    For the most part I think my blog is satisfying a curiosity that people have to understand the processes behind every day items and that very basic desire to hear other people’s stories.

    eva-dorney-recycled-gold-jewellery

    How much time do you spend creating your blog posts?

    I probably spend a half a day on each post between cleaning up photos, making collages, writing content and editing it. The former I would be doing anyway so that I have a record for my look-books and the content is really just fleshing out what I would historically have posted on facebook. I don’t necessarily spend all that time in one sitting, but it adds up!

    Do you plan to blog about other designers or things that inspire you to design?

    It’s still early days for my blog and it’s still new to me, but I must admit it’s an appealing idea. Being in a creative field I‘ve come to know lots of other creatives whose work I admire and it would be lovely to share their creative process on the blog. In fact I think I know who I’d like to start with! That’s one of the lovely things about the blog – it’s constantly evolving.

    Eva Dorney Goldsmith Ireland

    What sort of feedback have you got to your blog?

    The response to my blog has been overwhelmingly positive and I always see a spike in activity across my website when I post. I think from the perspective of SEO the blog posts have been important in bringing my work to a wider audience and my instinct is that the increase in new business enquiries is as a direct result of them.

    I’m also aware that the blog creates a greater sense of understanding and trust in people who haven’t worked with me before or who perhaps have never thought to order a bespoke piece. It helps to demystify the processes and to assure people that commissioning can be for everyone.

    What were the key things you took away from your Three Thought Bubbles workshop?

    1 It makes huge sense to blog
    2​​ There’s no point blogging impersonally
    3 Create a friendly about page and carry that tone through the entire site, especially the blog

    And finally, do you have a piece of advice for someone considering writing a business blog?

    It seems to me that one of the big things with blogging is coming up with interesting content week after week so I’d suggest spending time planning what you’d like to write about over the course of the first few months or better still year.
    I like to start half a dozen posts at a time, to get some ideas down and then flesh them out and edit them over the course of the following days or weeks as the case may be. I find it much less daunting to come to a half written post and finish it than to start with a blank page and know that within the next hours I need to transform it into a fully finished post. In a nutshell brainstorm and plan ahead!

    Thanks For chatting with us here Eva – I love your idea about starting several posts at a time. That takes the pressure off trying to write the perfect post in one sitting 🙂

    This interview is part of a series with Three Thought Bubbles students. Check out the others from the archives. And please get in touch if you’d like to hear more about my training courses. I offer different options to suit your level and needs.

    EvaDorney.comEva’s blogClasped.ie FacebookTwitter

    One-to-one tuition on how to write a business blog

    20 May

    At Three Thought Bubbles, I teach businesses how to write an authentic blog. Put simply, I help you get clear on exactly what you do and who you help. This helps us create a strategy for promoting your business online. I realise that people like to learn in different ways. Some of you love my small group workshops and others value one-to-one attention. I want to tell you about a new course which is designed for individual learning.

    learning-to-blog-dublin-three-thought-bubbles

    I’ll support and encourage you as you learn! I will de-mystify the jargon and help you to confidently tell the story of your business on the web. I’ll help you understand who you are writing for and what they need help with. And I’ll show you how to create content that people like to read online.

    This course includes:

    • Three two hour classes in a central Dublin location or at your business premises by arrangement
    • I’ll give you some creative writing assignments which I will provide feedback on
    • You will have access to both an online resource library and private community forum of Three Thought Bubbles students

    Have a look at the outline for this course. Tuition is always customised to suit your level of knowledge

    Session one is about gaining clarity about why you want to blog. The more focused you are, the more successful your blog will be.

    • An introduction to blogging and some of the terminology. Looking at the different social platforms and which ones suit your business best.
    • Clarity is the key goal with blogging; why do you want to blog and who you are writing for? This will lead us to your aims and goals for the blog.
    • What are your readers interested in reading about – what problems do they have?
    • Understanding how to write for an online audience as well as how people read content online.
    • I’ll show you examples of businesses who blog well.

    Session two is about learning the importance of being human online. This is all about revealing the ‘personality’ of your business and speaking in a way that connects with your audience or customers.

    • Learning how to connect with your audience. What voice does your brand have?
    • Creating your ‘About’ page. The ‘About’ page is the second most visited page on any website. Your customers want to get a real feel for what the team are like.
    • Different ways of storytelling – adding variety to your content with text, visuals, audio and video.
    • Visual storytelling – looking at different ways to strengthen your message with pictures. We’ll look at sourcing and creating your own visuals as well as the issue of copyright. I’ll share lots of free/inexpensive online image manipulation tools.
    • We’ll get inspiration from looking at businesses who have a human and authentic brand.

    Session three is about the technical aspects of blogging. It’s full of ‘How tos’. Once you have the information and skills, it’s time to start! Blogging is an ongoing learning experience.

    • Researching ideas for content. Looking at ways to save and index your ideas.
    • Tips on how to plan your content. Creating a number of categories that will trigger ideas for posts. Outlining a content plan. Looking at seasonal content ideas. Making time for blogging. Tips on time management and techniques to speed up your writing.
    • How to add links, embed videos or podcasts.
    • How to use keywords in your posts. How to create categories and tags for your posts.
    • Calls to action – what do you want your readers to do next?

    Read what my clients say about how I have helped them –

    Aine Teahan fromAnd Baby Makes Three‘.

    I enlisted Aisling’s help last year when I was in a bit of a blogging rut. I know how important blogging is for our business but for some reason I had lost my mojo and I needed some help!. My time with Aisling completely invigorated me and I’m in love with blogging again. She helped remind me why I was blogging and gave me the direction to go forward. I am now blogging consistently on a weekly basis and I can see huge benefits for our businessmore that 80% of our business comes as a result of the blog! If you’re on the fence about blogging or have lost your way, Aisling will get you on track. She is enthusiastic, full of great ideas and she will inspire you to get your story out there. It will be the best investment you could possibly make for your business.

    Siobhan Berry from Mummy Cooks

    It was such a pleasure to meet Aisling and work with her on my blog for my business. Up to this point I had just winged it getting inspiration for other bloggers and writing about what I know. For me the course just brought it all together and gave me a template as to how to move forward with my blog. My blogging would rely heavily on imagery and Aisling really helped in this area. Aisling brings out the creative side in everyone (despite my belief that I had none!) and has really given me the confidence and tools to move forward.

    Pricing:
    This three session programme is priced at €550.
    Your training material includes workbook notes and access to an online resource library, a written review of each session as well as feedback on your written projects. You can choose to add on additional training sessions on specific topics you need help with.

    Let’s start that conversation – I’d love to help you to launch your blog! My one to one classes take place at a time that suits you – either in a central Dublin location or at your place of work (by arrangement).

    .

    How to find and make time to blog

    24 April

    “How can I find the time to write a business blog?” This is the top question I get asked by business owners who know that their business would benefit from writing one. I totally get this question; I’ve run two businesses since 1998. Time management is something that I struggle with daily! This year though, I’ve made a huge effort to look at how I spend my time. Just like you, I get overwhelmed with ‘busy work’; battling ‘inbox zero’ or getting distracted by mind-blowing Twitter links. Here’s the best thing I learned this year – if you make something a habit, it is much more likely that you’ll keep it up. In this post, I’ll tell you about my latest 30 day habit challenge along with some resources to help you manage your time.

    how to make time to blog

    I watched a Ted Talk by Matt Cutts – Try something new for 30 days and loved the idea of really committing to something new to see how you like it. I wrote about it back in August 2013 and pushed the idea to the back of my mind. You see, I wasn’t totally committed just yet 🙂 More recently I came across the online programme SeaChange by Leo Babauta from Zen Habits. The timing was right, I was looking for ways to simplify both my work and personal life. 30 days seemed totally manageable and I was ready for a challenge. The suggested habit for April is Mediation but I’m already a regular meditator so I decided to jog every morning for the month of April.

    This involves getting up at 7am and climbing into my jogging gear. If you knew what a challenge early mornings are for me, you’d know that I don’t do much talking at this time of the day. But here’s what I found – I committed to doing it and it became an established routine. I’m already on day 24 and feeling great about myself. Here’s some other things I discovered:

    • I was really hard on myself at first because I couldn’t run very far. I constantly compared myself to those nimble joggers who passed me by with ease! I was uncomfortable because I hadn’t ‘mastered’ the skill. This is what I felt like when I started blogging first. We need to ease up on ourselves and allow time to learn something new.
    • Brain chatter is HUGE when you are jogging (Or is it just me?) “I’ll keep going to the next post and then I’ll stop”. As the post gets nearer… “I’m exhausted, I can’t go another step without stopping for a rest”. I learned to tell that voice to shut up and told myself another story instead; “You can do this, you feel fine”. It worked. Tip number two; ignore (or be understanding of) the negative voice that tells you that you can’t blog or don’t have time!
    • And there were lots of positive results too – I discovered how quiet the world is outside at 7am! I’ve slowly built up to running non-stop for 18 minutes in 24 days. This challenge has made me totally hooked on choosing and having new experiences.

    So, committing to writing the blog is the first big step. Well done if you’ve got to this stage. Next you need to have a clear plan of action. The clearer you are about your customer and content, the more succesful your blog will be. This is something I can help you with in one-to-one or small workshops.

    Here is a tip to get you started. Experiment by setting yourself regular times to write or brainstorm ideas for your blog. The Pomodoro technique might be fun to try out. It’s an application that is based around a 25 minute timer. The idea is that you block off this period of uninterrupted time to focus on doing one task. No distractions are allowed. You’ll soon see how many times your attention wants to wander in just 25 minutes. You may need several pomadoros to complete a task. Setting a time limit, is a great incentive to get your ideas down on paper or screen.

    Finally, I recommend that you take Claire Burge’s‘short test on ‘Time Organisational Styles. You’ll discover how you manage your time at work. It’s a brilliant eye-opener for discovering where those lost hours go!

    So, are you going to challenge yourself to start a business blog? What could you achieve in just 30 days? Remember, you can keep your blog private to start. I’m here to help answers any questions you might have – leave me a comment, email or give me a call. I’d love to hear from you or chat about how I can help you launch!