Let me just start by saying, if you’ve never taken a vacation from your blog you really need to plan one. Even if it’s just for a long weekend, and especially if you’ve been “phoning it in” lately. The break will do wonders for you and your blog.
Still, as refreshing as a vacation is, that first day back can be difficult, to say the least. Switching gears is hard no matter what you do for a living. Here are 13 ways I get back into blogging after a vacation.
I don’t know about you but I have to have a cup of coffee before I start work and I have a cup on my desk all morning long. It’s part of my morning ritual and I can’t start blogging without it. I might skip my morning cup while I’m on vacation, but when I’m back at my desk it’s absolute necessity. What triggers the start to your blogging day?
2/ Write a blog post
I generally don’t make writing blog posts one of the first tasks of the day. I like to limber up a bit first. But something about being away from my blog for a while makes my fingers itchy and I can’t wait to crank out that first post.
3/ Keep it light
I always keep this first after-vacation post light and breezy. I always look forward to this post because it’s almost like a new beginning, and I usually keep my eyes open for a light-hearted idea while I’m on vacation. Nothing that involves statistics or analysis, that’s for sure. This is my “fun” post.
4/ Visit my blog
Next, I visit my blog for a few minutes just to see what’s going on in the comments. I might check stats on a particularly lively post but generally I save this for the next day when my mind is full-on back on business.
I scan my emails to see if there’s anything urgent I need to take care of, but I leave the day-to-day stuff for the end of the day.
I like to go to Twitter and see if anyone’s sent me a DM or connected in some way and I like to send out a few Tweets to connect with my followers. At this point, I’m still keeping everything light and breezy because I’ve only had two cups of coffee.
Planning what I’m going to do with my afternoon is pretty easy. I just need to check my editorial calendar and see what posts I have planned to write. I always make sure I have this set up before I go on vacation so I don’t have to do any heavy lifting when I get back to my desk.
I always take time off for a light lunch and a bit of exercise. I might take a short walk around the block or do some housework. It just depends on the weather. But it helps re-energize your brain to get away from your desk for a few minutes and move around a bit.
9/ Eliminate all distractions
Back to my desk with no distractions. It’s time to do some writing!
This early afternoon period is my most productive writing time of the day and now that I’ve been back at my desk for a few hours I’m feeling a little more tuned up. I’ll spend three or four hours writing blog posts and scheduling them for publication.
I’m a scheduler so I always have my work planned out weeks in advance. Once I’m done writing for the day I revisit my schedule for the next week or so to make sure I’m on track. Since I’m just coming back from vacation and I’ve planned ahead, there’s normally not too much I need to do here, but it’s still worth checking every day.
Now I go through all of my emails, answering those I can immediately answer, sorting and filing those that require no response.
And finally, I create a list of things-to-do for the next day. Again, since I’m a planner, I already have this list started, but I’ll add tasks that pop up throughout the day, like emails that need a little research, or content ideas that pop into my head.
All-in-all, getting back into my blogging routine after vacation isn’t too stressful the way I have it laid out. Before I go on vacation I always map out the first week back and plan ahead to have a light day or two until I get back into the swing of things. How about you? What do you do on your first day back to your blog?