I recently made the decision to become my own boss. This is not a new idea to me and I have failed to achieve it many times because I failed to be realistic.
I got suckered into the illusion of overnight success. I thought you just uploaded your videos and the rest fell into place. I seemed to be oblivious to all the work people were putting in behind the scenes. They upped their content quality, uploaded consistently and promoted themselves. I needed to get on that. But, of course, there were other hurdles to get over.
I started getting myself organised but seemed to think I needed to produce daily content in order to do things “properly”. Sure, uploading daily content is great if it comes about organically. When you try to force it, it comes off as trying too hard and ultimately makes you put too much pressure on yourself. And this was the lovely corner I backed myself into. Eventually falling behind with the content I had planned to make, feeling discouraged and giving up.
I’ve been at both ends of the spectrum. Not making enough content to trying to make more content than I have time to produce. This time around I have to get serious with it and I have to get it right. And even though there’s a lot I want to do, I know I don’t have to do it all at once. Now when I plan my content I go through these three stages first.
Know what you want to achieve.
It’s easier to plan a journey when you know the destination. So write down everything you want to do, even if it just a list of topics. You need to have a solid idea of the volume of work you want to produce before you start planning your time.
Be honest about how much time you actually have.
This seems like a no-brainer but we all have a tendency to overestimate how much free time we have. We forget to factor in small tasks like preparing meals and chores. You also need to factor in plans others have made, so communicating your intentions to those around you is key.
Divide your goals into bitesize chunks.
Now you know what you want to do and how much time you have to dedicate to it, it’s time to portion out the work. And this is where most people, including myself, fail. We also have a tendency to overestimate our abilities and think we can do more than we actually can in the allotted time. Do yourself a favour and be brutally honest about how long it will take to complete each task.
If you aim to complete 5 tasks each session and you’re only managing to complete 2 this will not only put you behind schedule but leave you feeling discouraged. And the longer this goes on and unfinished tasks pile up, the more likely you are to pack it in altogether. Ideally, you want to leave yourself a little bit of wiggle room in case a task overruns or something comes up that needs immediate attention.
Even if your schedule works out that you’ll just be completely one task a day, that’s still one thing off your to-do list. When we accomplish things it puts us in a great mindset to move forward and accomplish more. Spreading yourself too thin from the get-go is just setting yourself up to fail. Working in bitesize chunks (even if they’re just nibbles) is still progress.
As long as you’re moving forward, you’re moving in the right direction.