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Episode 188: 5 Things To Ignore In Your Business For A Boost of Sanity with Megan Porta

In episode 188, Megan talks to us about quieting the noise and 5 things we can ignore so we retain our clarity and sanity with food blogging.

We cover information about unplanned social media time, email, analytics and followers and learning when it gets in the way of life and work.

Listen on the player below or on iTunes, TuneIn, Stitcher, or your favorite podcast player. Or scroll down to read a full transcript.

Takeaways

  • Go through the process of deciding what to ignore in by opening a fresh new spreadsheet to log your feelings.
  • Do you ever do this? You realize you’ve just spent the last 30 minutes not focusing on one single thing but instead just bouncing around, not getting anything accomplished? 
  • Batching! It’s such a great way to tap into the magic FLOW… and it’s also a great way to get a lot of crap accomplished in a short amount of time.
  • Unplanned social media time – Obviously social media is a necessary part of our businesses, so we can’t ignore it completely. I do have recommendations about how to pay attention to social media without selling your soul to it.
  • Email –  Don’t give your best self to tasks that don’t demand your best self. Email definitely does not demand my best self, so it doesn’t make sense for me to dive into it right away in the morning (my most productive time!) and it doesn’t make sense for me to check it repeatedly throughout the day.
  • Numbers – There is value in keeping an eye on analytics (once/month or so), but there is NO value in checking in too often. There are ebbs and flows, ups and downs, to EVERYTHING. Cycles are a part of life.
  • Social accounts that make you feel icky – I’M in control of what I see. I have to ability to unfollow, mute, or do whatever I need to in order to stay sane and happy as I do my IG scrolling.
  • Learning –  In my opinion, we have to constantly be learning in order to push that needle of success forward in a huge way. However! Sometimes it can be too much.

Focusing On Productivity?

Episode 175 we hear from Harry Ng about hyper-scheduling as a way to add clarity to your day.

Transcript

Click for full text.

Hey food bloggers! It’s just you and me today and in this solo episode I am going to talk about Things To Ignore. 

Food blogging does not have to be disastrous! It does not have to drain you, overwhelm you and make you feel like you are the only one in the world working your BUTT off to achieve some seemingly unattainable freedom. You deserve to value yourself and reap the rewards of doing that. You deserve to have a clear next step, to work less and earn more.

Join us inside the totally revamped EBT membership to go from:

Lonely to deeply connected

Overwhelmed to having clarity

Not knowing which information to consume to having clear next steps

Disorganized to planned and prepared

Lacking confidence to having bold confidence and valuing yourself

Everyone has a different definition of “freedom,” but we all want it. FREEDOM is the reason most food bloggers decide to dig in and find success. The focus of the EBT membership is to provide motivated food bloggers with resources and support to help meet their financial and freedom goals.

If this perks up your ears, head to EBT.com to become a member today!

Things To Ignore

If you follow me on social media you are likely getting tired of hearing me talk about how NOISY the online space has been for me recently. Every so often I go through a period where I need to reset. I know I need to do this when I’m bouncing around from project to project, task to task, tab to tab, email to WordPress to Facebook to Trello and back to email… Do you ever do this? You realize you’ve just spent the last 30 minutes not focusing on one single thing but instead just bouncing around, not getting anything accomplished? 

I’ve been doing this lately and this is NOT an effective way to run a business. It’s inefficient, it’s draining and also damaging. 

My first step was acknowledging it was happening. I SEE YOU, distraction. Shiny object syndrome. Whatever you want to call it. 

Then I heard an entrepreneur I know and respect talking on Clubhouse about how he batches his podcast interviews like CRAZY and gets so much done because of it. Batching! I used to batch! It’s such a great way to tap into the magic FLOW… and it’s also a great way to get a lot of crap accomplished in a short amount of time.

So I started putting a plan together for bringing batching back into my business in a new way and on a new level. More on this another time.. maybe in a separate solo episode. But for now, I want to talk about how thinking about batching has also given me a new perspective on boundaries and how creating boundaries gives me permission to ignore certain things that don’t need my attention.

Whether you are like me and finding this to be a particularly noisy season, or you are just trying to streamline and make a few little tweaks to your focus, I hope this information will be helpful for you.

Things to ignore

I’ll run through my own list of things I will be ignoring in the foreseeable future, so take or leave any of these ideas! As you know, we are all so unique and our businesses are also unique, so it would be highly unlikely that all of the things that work for me will ALL also work for you. Also, shout-out to Jason Logsdon here because he gave me the idea I’m about to share with you. (Thanks, Jason!) As you go through the process of deciding what to ignore in, open a fresh new spreadsheet meant for the sole purpose of logging your feelings. Not in a weird way, but for documentation purposes. As you work on different tasks throughout the day, pop over to your spreadsheet and log how you felt during and after you worked on a given task. Use this as your guide, to help refine what your focuses should and should NOT be in the future.

1 – Unplanned social media time – Obviously social media is a necessary part of our businesses, so we can’t ignore it completely. I do have recommendations about how to pay attention to social media without selling your soul to it. Here’s my personal new strategy: I allow myself to focus on TWO social media platforms at any given time. I also put time boundaries on those two platforms so I make sure I don’t overdo it. For the remaining platforms, I do bare minimum! Currently I am giving my time to Clubhouse and Instagram. I limit myself to 3 hours/week on Clubhouse and 15 minutes/day on Instagram. The other platforms are given very little love. Bare minimum love.

2 – Email – Ugh, email is my nemesis. On a daily basis, at least once, I feel like doing a “select all” delete. It has been my strategy (or non-strategy..) to dip into email here and there, as I go through my day, in hopes that I can “keep up” with it. But am I ever caught up? Even when I check it constantly? NO! 

I always go back to these wise words when I get caught in the neverending cycle of checking email every 5 minutes: Don’t give your best self to tasks that don’t demand your best self. Email definitely does not demand my best self, so it doesn’t make sense for me to dive into it right away in the morning (my most productive time!) and it doesn’t make sense for me to check it repeatedly throughout the day.

My new strategy (and this will likely evolve, just like everything else): I check email AFTER my burst of morning productivity and allow myself 30 minutes to take care of as much as possible. After that I have to wait at least 2 hours before checking again. 

3 – Numbers – I know I’ve talked about this on the podcast before, but there was a time when I was literally obsessed with my analytics and would sit and stare at them for hours at a time. This was not only a complete waste of my time, but getting into that obsessed mindset kept me from focusing on the things that actually mattered. It was an extremely unhealthy place to be. After probably far too long, I recognized that and stopped cold turkey. There is value in keeping an eye on analytics (once/month or so), but there is NO value in checking in too often. There are ebbs and flows, ups and downs, to EVERYTHING. Cycles are a part of life. So if our analytics are in a natural down swing, what is the point of pining over that?

My strategy on this: Review and log analytics/followers across platforms once/month. This will give you monthly insights about how your content is doing and can allow you to make needed adjustments. It will also give you a glimpse of progress made over time. OVER TIME. Not from day to day. 

Also, when you cling desperately to anything, there will never be a good outcome. Numbers are no exception to this.

4 – Social accounts that make you feel icky – This one is sneaky! When I started checking in with myself in the middle of doing something, I realized that there are social accounts I follow that I thought were good for me that actually were not. As I scrolled through Instagram during my allotted social scrolling time, I noticed that I would literally get a pit in my stomach and start scrolling super fast to speed through certain posts. Uh, THAT is a sign that those posts, those accounts, should probably not be in my feed. I feel like I accepted it as a normal thing to get agitated occasionally on social media, but it doesn’t need to be like this. I’M in control of what I see. I have to ability to unfollow, mute, or do whatever I need to in order to stay sane and happy as I do my IG scrolling. 

My new strategy: Any time I notice that icky feeling, I stop scrolling and ask myself why. Is the post I’m looking at coming from an account that has annoyed me in the past? If so, I mute and carry on..

5 – Learning – Whaaaa?! This coming from the girl who is constantly absorbing information? Yes, but let me explain. Absorbing information such as books, audiobooks, courses, webinars, podcasts, summits, etc, is great for business and I highly recommend doing this as much as you can. In my opinion, we have to constantly be learning in order to push that needle of success forward in a huge way. However! Sometimes it can be too much. There are times lately when I’ve been doing fairly mindless work such as editing photos and at the same time listening to a podcast. I noticed that my brain just kinda started to hurt. I replaced the podcast with silence and was able to carry on with my work just fine. 

Strategy: Whenever possible, schedule time for learning so you can give it undivided attention. If you do try to double up (like I so often do), check in with yourself periodically and if you feel overwhelmed, turn off the learning. 

188: 5 Things To Ignore In Your Business For A Boost of Sanity with Megan Porta

Whether you are finding this to be a particularly noisy season or you are just trying to streamline your business and make a few tweaks to your focus, this episode will be valuable! Listen in for 5 things to ignore (or mostly ignore!) for a boost of sanity and clarity.

  • Unplanned social media time
  • Email
  • Numbers (analytics/followers)
  • Social accounts that make you feel icky
  • Learning (when it gets in the way of life and work)

💥 Join the EBT community, where you will gain confidence and clarity as a food blogger so you don’t feel so overwhelmed by ALL THE THINGS!

📩 Sign up for FLODESK, the email service provider with intuitive, gorgeous templates and a FLAT MONTHLY RATE (no more rate increases when you acquire subscribers!).

Read this post about why I switched from Convertkit to Flodesk!

Questions or comments on this episode?

Head over to the Eat Blog Talk forum post about episode #188 to leave any questions or comments. We’d love to hear from you!

Megan
Megan

Megan started her food blog Pip and Ebby in 2010 and food blogging has been her full-time career since 2013. Her passion for blogging has grown into an intense desire to help fellow food bloggers find the information, insight, and community they need in order to find success.

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