How to Make the Commitment to Blogging

How to Make the Commitment to Blogging

If you’re at all interested in becoming a blogger and quitting your day job, then you should go with that feeling.

Many of us toy with the idea of working online and quitting our jobs but very few have the nerve to set out and actually make it happen.

This is a big shame however, as really there’s nothing to lose and everything to gain. In this article, we’ll look at how you can overcome the fear and the apprehension holding you back and dive in to become a blogger.

Fear Setting

If you’re afraid of giving up your job to become a blogger, then it’s time to do some fear setting. This is a technique recommended by Tim Ferriss and it’s highly effective when it comes to combating irrational fears.

To begin, you’re going to ask yourself what it is you’re afraid of and then make a list. Is it the thought of not being able to find work if you aren’t successful? Is it the thought that your family might think you’re irresponsible and leave you?

Once you’ve made the list, you’re next going to go down the column and assess every item in terms of how realistic it is. At the same time, you’re going to write down how you’d deal with that problem if it came to pass. Would your partner really leave you because you decided to chase your dreams? Wouldn’t it in fact be easy to walk into another job with your credentials?

Side Hustles

More importantly though, recognize that running a blog doesn’t have to mean giving up the day job. Put more time into a blog and it will grow faster but to be honest, you can do perfectly well with an hour a night and some time at the weekends.

If you’re really passionate about your blog, then you should find this doesn’t feel like work either… So why not try fitting your blogging in around your job until it’s bringing in some funds? This way there’s no risk and you’ll have a much better idea of whether you can be successful before you make any giant leaps.

The Stick…

Finally, consider one more fear.

The fear of what happens if you don’t take a chance on blogging.

The fear of being stuck in the same job, day in day out, for the next 20, 30 or 40 years of your life.
Now you decide: which is more scary?

Growth Hacking 101 – Using Influencer Marketing for Your Blog

Growth Hacking 101 – Using Influencer Marketing for Your Blog

‘Growth hacking’ is a popular buzz word on the web at the moment and for obvious reasons. The idea behind growth hacking is to ‘hack’ or ‘cheat’ the usual growth trajectory of any new blog and thereby get to the point where you’re bringing in thousands of hits a day long before you normally would. Growing a blog is a matter of following a set system and as with any system, there are ways to ‘game’ the process and shortcuts to be found.

A great example of this is ‘influencer marketing’.

This is one of the most powerful tools available to any blogger which can help you to instantly communicate with a gigantic audience instead of feeling like you’re talking to an empty room for months…

What is Influencer Marketing?

So how does influencer marketing work?

The simple idea here is that you overcome the limitation of not having a huge audience by using someone else’s huge audience.

A simple way to do this is through a ‘solo ad’. Here, you pay someone to promote you to their mailing list, which could mean reaching thousands of followers.

The only problem with that strategy is that you get what you pay for. Reaching a worthwhile audience may cost more than you have to spare.

Instead then, you might do better to focus on other ways to work with influencers – for instance getting them to retweet your messages on Twitter or to publish your post on their blog (this is called guest blogging).

How to ‘Hack’ Influencer Marketing

And guess what? Influencer marketing can be hacked too! In other words, there are ways you can reach the big influencers faster if you know how to go about it…

One example of this, is to combine influencer marketing with real world networking. In other words, if you can speak to an influencer in the real world, they’ll be far more likely to give you a shoutout. If you take a photo with them, you could even upload it to Instagram and tag you both in it!

Another tip is to aim at the right level of influencer. Don’t go straight for Richard Branson – start small and then work your way up.

The ideal influencer to work with is someone who is at a similar level to you but just slightly ahead. That way, you’ll still have something to offer them in return.

Adding a Vlog to Your Blog

Adding a Vlog to Your Blog

Want to increase the popularity of your blog, gain more visitors and strengthen your relationship and authority with those existing fans?

One of the most effective ways to do all these things is to add video to your site. Not only is video highly engaging and difficult to look away from, it’s also highly persuasive and very personal. For building a ‘personal brand’ in particular, this is one of the very best ways to let your visitors get to know you.

Creating Your Vlog

The best way to create a vlog is by creating a YouTube channel, which you can brand to be in-keeping with your site. YouTube lets you upload videos which you can then easily share on social media and embed into your content.

Next you’ll need to create your videos. To do this, all you need is a camera (your phone camera is likely good enough if it can record in 1080p) and you’ll need a topic.

In terms of topics, you can actually be very successful by making video versions of your most popular articles.

You can even just read them out! You can then either upload your footage ‘unedited’ or you can upload it after making it look more professional with software like Adobe Illustrator or the free Movie Maker.

Tips for Creating Great Looking Videos

Shy to step in front of the camera? Keep in mind then that you can easily create content for your videos using PowerPoint presentations, or animated ‘whiteboard’ software.

Alternatively, if you’re going to film yourself talking, take some time to look at popular videos in your niche to see how they do it.

Some universal truths that will help you to be a success are:

* Think about lighting and ideally try to be lit from the side. This is called ‘Rembrandt lighting’.
* Consider your audio too – filming with a mic is the best option if possible.
* Dress smart but don’t look like you’re trying too hard.
* When reading, pause between each sentence. You can also just talk naturally which will come across as friendlier and more natural.
* Think about your background and try to set up a corner of a room that will look professional. You can even try hanging a poster with your logo on it for added bonus points!

Post a few videos regularly and upload them as articles on your site. You’ll find that it adds more to the site and brings in lots of new fans!

Investing In You

Invest in You

 If you are not investing in personal development, you may be limiting your true potential. Personal development affects your entire life, not just your work life or your personal life. It’s amazing how many people don’t try to improve themselves. These are the same people that wonder why they are not getting anywhere with their lives.

You want to use some guidelines to help you which are as follows:

Imagine How You Want to Shape Your Life

Without a vision, you won’t be able to determine what kind of life you want to live. You need to balance what kinds of changes you want professionally as well as personally. The two will ultimately overlap. If you imagine yourself being more helpful to others, this trait will become part of both. There may be certain aspects of your personal development that you believe are specific to personal life but may eventually carry over to your professional life. If you have wanted to increase your skills as a community leader, this could easily be incorporated into your professional career. The key is to identify and imagine what this new skill is going to look like.

Assess Your Current Situation

Before you make any changes in your life, determine where you stand with your life as it currently exists. Determine strengths and weaknesses to help you formulate a plan to make the necessary changes.

Set Goals

Once you know what your strengths and weaknesses are, create some goals to strive to complete. These should include high level goals as well as action steps. Most important, set milestones with firm dates for these action steps.

Consider Alternatives

There can be valid reasons why certain actions or goals can’t be met. Instead of abandoning the entire personal development plan, come up with alternatives steps. Be careful not to simply fall back on these steps because they are easier than the main goals.

Evaluate How You Are Doing

When you reach a milestone, see how you did against the plan of action steps. This is a crucial step, and it’s important to be realistic and truthful. The best way to handle this is to have someone else perform this for you. It may not be easy to hear, but the benefits will be well worth it.

Keep it Simple

If you add a bunch of unobtainable goals to your plan, you are likely setting yourself up for failure. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to push yourself. It just means being realistic about your capabilities.

Can You Use Nootropics to Get More Done in Less Time?

Can You Use Nootropics to Get More Done in Less Time?

If you work a typical 9-5 then you are going to be fixed to working for those specific hours. This means there’s no benefit to working faster and then sitting around with nothing to do for hours.

But if you have managed to set up your own business, or if you have discussed flexi-hours with your employers, then working faster means freeing up more time to get home and spend with your kids or doing the things you love!

In these scenarios then, productivity tools help you to earn back your time. And this is one reason that more and more people are now looking into ‘nootropics’ or ‘smart drugs’ to give them the edge. Should you?

What Nootropics Are and How They Work

So let’s start by looking at exactly what a nootropic is and how it works. What’s important to recognize right away is that nothing can make you ‘smarter’ as such because that is a very vague term that is almost impossible to define.

Rather then, nootropics can give you a slight cognitive boost in particular areas like focus, memory or even creativity.

And there are two separate ways that nootropics can work to do this. In the majority of cases, nootropics work by increasing the production of one or more neurotransmitters. These are the chemicals in the brain that help neurons to communicate with one another and that can trigger changes to our physiology and our mental state.

For example, if you have more dopamine in your brain then you will become more focussed and more driven. This is likely to also increase norepinephrine which triggers the ‘fight or flight’ response. GABA helps us to relax by suppressing synaptic transmissions and this can also make us more creative – though it is sedative too. Serotonin puts us in a good mood but eventually converts to melatonin and makes us sleepy. Cortisol is the stress hormone and makes us hungry. Orexin is another sleep-regulating neurotransmitter. Glutamate and acetylcholine are both excitatory neurotransmitters that increase brain activity.

Generally, these nootropics that work by increasing neurotransmitters will focus on excitatory neurotransmitters and thus help to make you more alert, less tired and more focused. These include modafinil, Piracetam, Ritalin and even caffeine.

But there are many problems with these kinds of drugs as they can cause adaptations in the brain leading to potential addiction and making us groggy when not using them. Likewise, it’s not possible to raise one neurotransmitter without altering levels of many more. Ultimately, the brain is too delicate and too complex for us to tinker with it in this way.

The Other Type of Nootropic

But the other types of nootropics work differently – by providing the brain with more energy (vinpocetine, creatine, CoQ10) or by providing it with the raw nutrients needed for healthy operation (omega 3 fatty acid, vitamin B6, zinc). These types of nootropic really do trigger widespread cognitive improvement in a safe and measurable way. However, the results are relatively mild and take a while to appear – so it’s not going to turn you into a productivity king over night!