Since I began blogging, I’ve found my mind tends to get extremely cluttered with great ideas and good intentions. I find myself continuously thinking about new articles, ways to monetize, affiliates to join, shortcuts I discover, products I like, services I want to remember to praise, the list goes on and on. All of which I would think of, get excited about – then forget! Just like that!
I do have a notebook in nearly every room of my house and keep a clipboard next to my workstation where I make notes throughout the day. However, over time, I end up with lots of notes without organization.
Years ago, a close friend of mine, Julie Bonner introduced me to the idea of a Blog Binder. I did create one. And I actually did use it for a while. As work decreased and real life shifted it’s gears up a notch, I forgot about that valuable organizational tool that was tucked away in a box when we made our move back in June of 2010.
Having been formally diagnosed with OCD, I have this overwhelming *need* to be and stay organized. Chaos is not my friend. While driving recently (the time when many bright ideas come to me and I can’t write them down), I remembered my binder and decided it was high time to dig that baby out, update it and put it to use again.
The way I have my binder organized is customized to my own projects, schedule and habits. You can take from the suggestions and improve on them to suit your own needs, which is exactly what I did with the suggestions Julie gave, way back when.
This is how I have my binder laid out
My Work Schedule:
At the front of my binder, I have a schedule written out. It’s not an hour by hour schedule, because we all know working from home has it’s interruptions throughout the day. What I have done however is write out descriptions of projects I wish to focus on daily. For example, Monday focuses on traffic, Tuesday I visit new blogs, Wednesday I explore new affiliate options, Thursday may be social networking and so on. I find that if I dedicate specific days to certain projects, I do get more done. If I happen to miss a day, just like a prescription medication – don’t double up on the dose, just get back on schedule the next day.
Keeping It Organized:
Since I do have multiple blogs, and a couple of contract gigs, I took Julie’s suggestion and created a tabbed divider labeled for each blog/gig. Behind that divider, I have placed blank sheets of paper where I keep track of post ideas, items that must be done, new blogs within my niche that I wish to revisit, links to or mention, etc. I don’t allow myself to be interrupted to really visit a blog if it’s not on the schedule. Stay focused!
There are so many times I come across a great post that focuses on a topic that I need to pay a little more attention to and that I want to keep for reference for future projects. I’ve created a section in my binder that holds those articles. I simply print them out (because taking notes would take too much time) and write on the top in bright marker a single descriptive word so I can easily flip through and find the articles focusing on the topic of the day – when that day rolls around.
Creating a binder is really very simple and cost effective. Nothing more then a pack of paper, a 3-ring binder, a pack of dividers, and perhaps a 3-hole punch for those printed articles. A very small price to pay for getting that clutter out of your head and into a single, well organized location.
When you’re working toward building your online reputation, building your freelance business, kicking up your affiliate marketing a notch or simply writing because you have something important to say – this method will help keep the chaos at bay so you can get right to the valuable project at hand.
What are some of your favorite organizational habits or tips?
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