Thursday, November 6, 2014

Checking it once, Checking it twice

My blogger friend, Krista, of Covering the Bases did an awesome post last week about how to balance blogging and a full time job. It's definitely worth a read as she gives some great tips. 

I love blogging more than anything. It is truly something I am passionate about (if you can't tell!). I'm not going to lie, blogging and working full time is truly stressful... it's an enjoyable kind of stress (if there even is such a thing), but sometimes I lie in bed at night and stay awake thinking about all that I have to get done... but that's after I get through a day of work. 

I think the thing that keeps me most sane, is hands down the way I handle my lists. I have always been a list person (see past posts here and here). I'm super organized and heavily rely on lists to get through life.  

As I grow and change, my career evolves and Summer Wind expands, I've changed up my list making just a little from last year's post (seriously cannot believe this post was almost a year ago. whew). I thought I would update you on my list making process and hope you will share your tips and tricks on making the perfect list. Lists are very personal, but it's always good to learn from others to expand your horizons. I'm going to do this post in two parts, because I have a ton of lists and this post is super text heavy. First I'll start off with what lists I keep on my iPhone:

On My iPhone:
  • A long-term blog post list. This is any and every blog idea that pops into my head. I have about 247 ideas right now in the list. A lot of ideas, I come up with at the most random times, so it's nice to be able to quickly type in my ideas. That way, I can go back and decide if I still like the idea after I sit on it for a little. It's also great because when I'm in a pinch for a post, I can usually rely on my list and it helps me to come up with an idea quickly. I never actually delete anything from the list, unless I have already posted about it. For example, on my list, I have 'Gallery Girls' as something way up on my list... I probably wanted to blog something about that show (Bravo a few years ago), but I leave it on there in case it for some reason inspires me. I've literally had this ongoing list since I got my iPhone in 2011... so there are some pretty dated ideas. 
  • Short-term blog post list. This is usually posts that I have to have up within the month. It's to remind me of the deadlines and due dates so I can continue to collaborate with some awesome brands. This list doesn't really consist of abstract ideas, but rather, more concrete things like 'blog about Bare Minerals makeup'. 
  • Day List. This is my running list I make while at work. If something randomly pops into my head like 'oh, I have to remember to e-mail ____ back, or I need to pick up a hostess gift on the way home from work, or to make a mani/pedi appointment, or call ___ to wish a happy bday'... whatever could pop into my head that I can't take care of while working, it goes on the list. Usually this list is pretty immediate stuff, so I can cross most to-do's off by the time I go to sleep. 
  • One Post. I only have a few of these in my phone right now, but they are basically for me to jot things down as I think of them. For example, for this post that I wrote about enjoying the little things was evolved from a simple phone list. Whenever I would experience a 'little thing in life', I would record it in my phone so I could compile it into one blog post. I also think mulling things over helps to create better content than quickly writing something. My favorite and best posts are the ones that I have really taken my time on. 
  • Songs. I'm a huge music person. I listen to music all day everyday. I just started Spotify, but I love creating playlists on iTunes, listening to Pandora and using the 8tracks app. I usually screenshot something, but if not, I make sure to add it to my song list so I can remember to go home and download. 
  • Christmas List. So I'm 24, so it's a little weird to have a Christmas list, but it also kind of falls into the 'one post' category of lists, too. If I see something that I'm dying for, I add it to the list. Usually, if it stays on the list for months, then I really want it. Then, I either buy it myself, or ask for it for a holiday. 
  • Makeup. I love trying new makeup, so whenever I hear about a new brand or product I want to try, I make sure to type it in. It also helps me to have good conversations with sales people at Sephora. 
Are you an obsessive list maker like I am? How do you keep your lists organized? Have a fabulous day! 



Anonymous said...

You're an extremely hyper, wired individual - gives me chills to think what you're gonna be like in a just a few years.... lay off that caffeine! Seriously babe!!! You're gonna have major brain issues later in life. (I have a neuro background, btw.)

kTm said...

I am a huge list person and I find that I'm constantly gong back and forth from list on my phone to list written down. An app I love to use for list especially is Evernote, because I can access it on both my phone and computer!

Pick Your Beau

Summer Wind said...

Anonymous, I do love my coffee! I guess there are far worse habits to have in life, though ;)

Anonymous said...

I am an obsessive list maker! I have short and long term to-do lists, grocery lists, lists for movies to watch and books to read, lists for future gift ideas, decorating lists, etc etc etc. My best strategy for managing day-to-day obligations is google calendar. As a grad student, my schedule is varied and often independently driven (classes, research, studying, thesis writing) and having my time visually blocked is the only way for me to stay organized.

And, as for the anonymous comment above- Ha! I think that your energy is probably one of the reasons you can manage running a blog with new content every day and having a full time job. Coffee is hardly something you need to worry about affecting you long term!

Ellen Borza said...

I have lists everywhere! Sticky notes, my iPhone, my laptop, notebooks. Can you ever have enough lists?! I love your way of staying organized!

Ellen | A Pop of Pink

Sarah said...

I make lists upon lists upon lists! They're great! Right now my job doesn't allow me to bring my phone through security in the mornings, so I'm working with a traditional paper-and-pen model at the moment. I'm changing jobs in about a month, thgouh, so I'm interested to see if I begin to enjoy the convenience of being able to have my phone with me, or if I still stick with my notebook of lists.

Sweet Spontaneity

Ellyse O said...

I love this! I was just thinking about how I feel like I never have enough time to manage blogging with working full-time, but I'm definitely going to try your list method to keep everything under control!

Anonymous said...

Do you use a certain app for the lists? I keep tons of ongoing lists in the notes app that came with my iPhone. (Grocery, gift lists, to do lists, good quotes, etc.) But I was wondering if there is a better app that you like. EM


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