In case you hadn’t noticed this month I have picked a theme across the blogs of ‘spring cleaning’. The prompts for bloggers series shall include a series of actionable prompts to help you spring-clean your blog.
First up: Your “About Me” page.
Do you have one? Is it up to date? How can you make it more personal?
Your ABOUT ME page should balance both showcasing who you are and how you can help your audience. The right audience.
PROMPT: REFRESH YOUR ABOUT ME PAGE
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A few weeks ago I prompted bloggers to sign up to the April A to Z Challenge 2014. This week I would also like to encourage you to: sign up for the A to Z Theme Reveal Blog Hop on 21st March 2014 (I am looking forward to seeing what everyone is up to this year). If the A to Z is not for you why not still consider taking part in a Blog Hop that is more up your street: read our other favourite blog hops on the A to Z site to get you started.
As promised the BRAND NEW Organisational Notebook for the 2014 challenge is now available (and Prompts for Bloggers Premium Subscribers will get the PDF copy to download for free).
If you are not already a subscriber grab a 2014 subscription now.
This weekend is my second weekend trip in a row. So I thought it was about time to create an easy travel insert that I can refer to so that packing for a weekend away is a walk in the park.
This week’s free download is the result of this project. Three different inserts are available to download – the suggested items list and a blank insert for both A5 and Personal for you to create your own packing list.
Grab your Insert now! Don’t forget you now need to be an email subscriber to access the new inserts for FREE.
Yesterday, the blog post: How to spend only 10 minutes per day on Twitter on mashable seemed to gain momentum – it was everywhere.
Lately everything I read online seems to be about getting things done quicker, more efficiently or generally trying to cut down on procrastination.
Personally, I manage procrastination by using checklists and scheduling my time. This can include my social media activity and although I do enjoy relaxing and using social media as ‘downtime’ sometimes I do think it is worth thinking about how to do 10 minutes a day for your chosen social media channels.
So this week why not build on your current schedule and revise your social media usage.
This week Prompts for Bloggers Premium Subscribers can download our Social Media 10 minutes a day checklists. Now available for Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram. An example of which is shown below.
Holidays and events are the perfect time to do a targeted blog post, competition or even social media campaign. So why not update your calendar by including some of these holidays and seasonal events to make sure you plan ahead with plenty of time. Seasonal content does not have to be about sales, but rather you should be thinking about time-based needs and interests of your readers, clients or customers. This does not have to be limited to holidays, but could include key seasonal interests that affect your customers. To make the most of it seasonal content and marketing should be part of your regular editorial calendar and blog plan. Not as an afterthought when you notice the early bird promotions starting to pop up.
This week Prompts for Bloggers Premium subscribers can download our holiday calendar sheet (which has space to add your own seasonal content relevant to your niche). Alternatively just complete your own in the blank version and then get planning.
Got any plans for Valentines’s day?
This free insert / printable allows you to choose the habit to focus on, write down the motivation for why you have picked this habit and allows you to reward yourself at the end of the 30 days. I have also included a bubble for completion of the habit. You can either proudly declare the date, just write ‘success’ or make a note for what to try next time.
10 ways to use… a habit tracker in your Filofax
- the obvious one – to track a traditional daily habit: exercising, eating healthily or having breakfast. Keep one in your Fitness and Health Filofax.
- to use as an alternative to the daily routine checklist (or equivalent) in any Filofax.
- to use in your Blogging Filofax – want to use social media daily? or publish a blog post daily? Add this insert to your Blogging Filofax to help motivate your engagement.
- to use in your Career Filofax – are you a job seeker? maybe you want to do a daily job search? Add this insert to your Filofax to keep you on track.
- to use in your Reading Filofax – use this insert to work on your goal of reading a chapter a day to help you get through your reading list more efficiently.
- to develop a regular writing or journaling habit.
- to break a BAD habit – keep one in you food diary / recipe filofax to stop you from buying takeaway or any unhealthy foods – how many days can you go without?
- to track a challenge you are taking part in like NaNoWriMo, April A to Z Challenge or other daily blogging challenge or Photo a Day Challenges.
- as end of the day ‘downtime’. If you review your day / to do list at the end of the day – incorporate your habit tracker ticking off into your routine (or use the habit tracker to start your own end of the day wind down).
- to track your habits to find out how often you are doing them – you may not be doing them daily or weekly, even where you have no regular routine, tracking when you do something can provide valuable information to help plan your habits, make changes to your lifestyle or simply ‘give you the heads up’.
The 30 day Habit Tracker is available to download from ‘Prompts for Filofaxers’. Email Subscribers can access this download for FREE.
It has been a busy week of booking and making appointments to see wedding venues. I usually use my diary (personal calls) or my desk planner (work calls) to remind myself to call someone but this week I have found that I needed something more. I needed to remember things to ask during the call as well as remember what was confirmed in the call and what I needed do next. I needed a sensible place for all this information.
Prompted by this experience I decided to create actionable telephone notes that can be stored in your filofax to keep phone messages, reminders for calls to make and records of calls made. It is worth keeping a few blank ones in your filofax (you never know when you might need them). I have added a few to my Wedding Planner filofax and my Career filofax now.
Grab your Insert now! Don’t forget you now need to be an email subscriber to access the new inserts for FREE.
The Sign-Up list opened last week for the A to Z Challenge. The daily blogging challenge takes place in April each year (but the community is active all year round). I am now all signed up. Once again I will be tackling the challenge with both of my blogs: PlanningwithPrintedPortal (which shall once again host free inserts) and DIY Career Development. If you are a blogger and have not already signed up why not take a closer look – over 500 blogs have signed up already.
The Challenge is to write 26 daily blog posts one for each letter of the alphabet during the month of April (Sundays are a day of rest). The second part of the challenge is to visit as many of the blogs taking part in the challenge as possible. I always find this part much more challenging. (There are blogs that I never got round to reading despite taking part in the post-challenge road trip).
Why sign up for the Challenge?
I originally signed up to revitalise my blogging, create a daily writing habit and to meet new people. I successfully did all this but I also found some fantastic blogs (and bloggers) that I would never have stumbled across without the challenge and curated a lot of content for the blog. Last year by doing inserts for the challenge it both motivated me to do inserts that I needed for my Filofax but had not got round to creating AND built up my collection of free inserts. Creating Free Inserts is a habit that has continued post-challenge (although it has its peaks and troughs).
I won’t lie, it is a hard challenge (particularly with multiple blogs) and plenty of people drop out along the way – but it is a great experience which is why I am doing it again for the 3rd year running.
Sign up now!
The Organisational Notebook: A to Z Challenge 2014
To help ORGANISE such a mammoth challenge I designed an organisational notebooks JUST for planning the challenge. The notebook kept EVERYTHING I needed for the challenge in one place and you can read more about how I designed and used it in the posts listed below:
Once again I am designing an organisational notebook for the challenge (with some tweaks). The BRAND NEW Notebook for 2014 will be available before the end of February (and Prompts for Bloggers Premium Subscribers will get the PDF copy to download for free). If you are not already a subscriber grab a 2014 subscription now.
This month I have been thinking about goals and resolutions and this includes – starting good habits (and getting rid of bad ones). Last year I started by using an app and then another app and then another one and none of them really seemed to work and I ended up resorting to a habit tracker in a similar style to my daily routine checklist for making sure I do something on a daily basis.I usually use it with my filofax open when I am in front of the computer or having my morning coffee and simply carry out the action and check it off.
However, this is not the same as picking a habit, and developing that habit over a period of 30 days. This week’s free insert / printable allows you to choose the habit to focus on, write down the motivation for why you have picked this habit and allows you to reward yourself at the end of the challenge. I have also included a bubble for completion of the habit. You can either proudly declare the date, just write ‘success’ or make a note for what to try next time.
Free Download: 30 Day Habit Tracker.
It is the beginning of the New Year and the perfect time to get organised. The perfect project for a stormy wet weekend is to start by spending some time organising your files so that you can find things efficiently.
Start by re-structuring your filing system so that the IMPORTANT and regularly used things are easy to find and are easily accessible.
You should try and cap the number of folders that you have so that documents are easy to find. You can of course use sub-folders as well. You should use a filing system that suits your personal needs but I recommend that you try and cap folders at 10 (and each set of sub-folders at 10) so that you know exactly where you should be filing something and you don’t end up with duplicate content and folders.
All your folders should also have logical and obvious names so you know exactly what should be filed in each and you know exactly where things are when you come to look for them again.
When doing this exercise you should try and avoid the time-wasting activity of opening and looking at the documents (you need to be focussed on the task at hand). Therefore any miscellaneous items should be filed temporarily to revisit at a later time.