I’m often asked how I manage to get so much content created each week. As anyone who has a travel blog will tell you, content is King! This means you need to be creating good quality content on the regular, to keep your readers happy, your audience engaged and bring new readers to your site. While I’m in a good routine of blog writing now, that wasn’t always the case. There was a time I would quite literally cry whenever I tried to write a blog post but all that changed when I read about this one super easy trick. When I started using it, it had a profoundly positive impact on my life.
Let’s briefly talk about the embarrassing crying bit again, just so I can share with you why and how I got to that point, so if you’re in the same spot in your life you can feel a little less bad about yourself and know it’s completely normal! Alright, so I was working full-time at my office job many years ago and my blog was still this tiny little thing I did on the side. It was still very much a hobby, but I loved it dearly.
The problem was tI really disliked the way my job made me feel. I was unsatisfied and frustrated beyond belief. What I really wanted to do was devote all my time and energy to my blog and be happy each and every day, writing and creating. But the human mind works in mysterious ways and instead of giving me the motivation to bust out of a shitty situation, my brain decided I should feel really sad and cry every time I tried to write a blog post. Instead of finding joy in my blog I started to find utter misery. Brain… why you so strange?!
This went on for months and I just could not break out of my funk. Blog time = cry time / angry time. Then, one magical day, I read something incredible that really struck me. It was a blog post sent to me by a friend and I want to take a second to give full credit to that blog. Here’s a link to the original blog post, though there are quite a few write-ups about it on the internet too if you just google search for it, this is another good one.
It is what I’ll refer to from this point on as The Seinfeld Strategy. Yes, that’s right, that Seinfeld… as in Jerry Seinfeld. Now at first when I saw it was a comedian I was all, “Whaaaaaaaat… how the heck can a super successful, funny comedian dish out deep life-changing advice?” But really, who better?! The guy clearly knows what he’s doing, I mean, he’s so successful and good at what he does. Who better to dish out the life-changing wisdom nuggets?
His strategy is simple and totally life changing, this is my interpretation of it and how I apply it to my life.
The key to achieving goals is consistency. Whether you’re trying to improve your fitness, become better at something or achieve your dreams, the key to success is being consistent in the work you put in. Seinfeld’s advice is to set yourself a task that is realistic and beneficial then get a wall calendar ( a sheet of paper with squares ruled up on it will do fine). When you complete your task, use a big red marker and put a cross in the square. Each time you complete your task, you get to put another red cross in the square. You’ll learn to love the feeling of putting that cross in the box and seeing the chain grow. Your only job is to build the chain.
You can set yourself a task that needs to be done daily, weekly or even monthly. When I was struggling with my blog, my only task was to write one blog post a week, that was it. At the moment I’m trying to get my fitness back, so my daily tasks are, ‘Make good food choices, exercise, drink 2L water and get enough rest,’ if I do those things, I get to put a cross in the box at the end of each day.
The important thing to notice here is the focus isn’t on results. My goal for each day isn’t to lose weight, it’s just to complete my task and keep moving forward. When I was struggling with my blog the goal wasn’t to write an incredible blog post that received 100,000 views and was shared 10 times. My task was just to write a blog post and publish it, then move on.
What this does is amazing, it totally takes your focus off the overwhelming size of things. Instead of worrying about how long it’s going to take you to get your fitness back or how many blog posts you’ll have to write until you achieve success, you just focus on that one little thing instead. You just focus on getting that nice, shiny, red cross in your box. The real key to success with this is choosing a task that is achievable and sustainable. If you choose a task like, ‘Run 10km each day,’ you’re probably not going to be able to stick with it. So, choose something that’s meaningful and realistic.
People often ask me what the key is to creating a successful travel blog. The truth is it really comes down to consistency. By consistently creating great quality content that people can rely on, you’re building your blog one piece at a time. Just be consistent.
So, if you’ve been thinking of working to achieve something but have been struggling to get started or actually get it done… give the Seinfeld Strategy a try. It took me from being a blubbering mess to pumping out blog posts like mad! For real! There are a million different ways you could apply this to your life, to bring benefit to it. Here are some ideas just to give you some parting inspiration.
If you want to improve your:
- health and fitness, set daily tasks to rest, exercise, drink enough water and eat well
- blog, set a weekly task to publish a certain number of blog posts per week
- social media game, set a daily task to post a photo on each platform and engage with other users
- photography, set a weekly task to get out and practice your photography for 2 hours each week
- relationship, set a daily goal to spend an hour having a meaningful conversation with your sweetie, with no distractions
- mental health, set a daily goal to meditate for 10 minutes and spend 30 minutes each day doing something you love, just for you
- artistic skills, set a weekly goal to spend two hours drawing, painting or sketching
There are a lot of people out there who desperately want to pursue their dreams (I know, I was one of em!) When you’re at the start, it feels totally and completely overwhelming and the amount of time and effort you need to put in can easily act as a mental barrier, preventing you from taking those first steps or consistently doing what you need to achieve your dreams. I felt the same way, I honestly did. Using this strategy took away the enormity of it all and placed my focus on simple, easily achievable tasks. It helped me build up the strength and momentum I needed to achieve my dreams and I’m certain it can help others too.
Just remember, the focus isn’t on the quality of what you produce, it’s about achieving your task so you can get your nice big red cross on the board. I really hope this helps a few of you in the same way it helped me. It has had such a positive impact on my life and made it much more manageable for me to do what I need to achieve my goals. Happy Seinfeld-ing!
Need some more insight? Watch this…
Phoebe Lee is a travel writer and award-winning blogger with a love for storytelling. Phoebe creates practical, fun and engaging written content designed to inspire and energise travel-lovers and dreamers. Follow her and Matt’s adventures at home and around the world, right here on Little Grey Box and through Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.