The Pressure of Rules

The Pressure of Rules

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Reason Not to Blog #1: There are too many rules

I almost did it. I almost didn’t write today. I woke up less than motivated. Why? Because I did not get some work done last night and I am feeling a bit guilty. see I have turned myself into a slave to hourly work again and since I care about my work it bums me out. Every hour I spend working on a project makes me more money, but the hours I need to work keep increasing. I am getting burned out on building cracker boxes.

I want this all to work today and I want to put only enough on my plate that I will actually get done. I usually start with a simple list, add on other things, and get sidetracked a few times. I tell myself to stick to a plan and keep it consistent because any plan I layout can easily get away from me. But then I need a reminder to remember this.

I always start out with these introspective articles in the first person that have me going through my thoughts in public. But I have to get through them until the writing just comes out naturally again. To much of my interaction with a computer has been in the form of variables, loops, tables and braces. This worked out pretty well when I was looking for a way to lay out all of my post before I published, but not that well for writing itself.

I need to stop making things so complex. They are simple. Or they may not be simple, but for one person to do them, I need to make them appear. So I will try this slowing down, breaking things down into simpler chunks and not think about the other things waiting. As I say this, I wonder how long it will last.

I think trying to blog and build traffic fast is like speeding in traffic. If you do, you do get ahead of the pack, but you will not really get that far ahead.

So the steps now:

  1. Write Posts
  2. Use What Works
  3. No Pressure.

Or something like that. Rules never really work completely and are really hard to stick to and anyone truthfully trying to follow them will tell you so. Those that faithfully follow rules are either robots or eventually snap and do damage to surrounding objects. People are not computers and infinite loops do not work, they are called “insanity”. You see, too much coding lately.

But rules are good to come back to. I still swear by the methods laid out in Zen to Done.

Of course, since this is a blog, use what works can mean a lot. I will be writing, building links and watching my stats. As well as what I call the “yes, I am a real live person” activities of answering comments and joining social network conversations.

The problem is to get all of this to work together for my schedule. Obviously, if I only have enough time to write a post a day, then I can’t write a post a day. I can only write 3 or 4 and use the rest of the time to promote, comment and network.

Where this balance lies is hard to know, even after I have been doing it for a while. In fact, that is one of the reasons that there are now great gaps in my blog. I loaded up too much on one activity while my time shrank. And then not blogging just became too easy.

But then again I do much more than blogging and I loaded up with too much of everything. I do this to myself a lot. Something I am trying to fix now. But blogging is good. I always feel like I have things a little bit more organized after I write.

And really there are no rules. Once you start thinking there are, read other blogs. You may be in a rut. Always get a second, third or fourth opinion.

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Stephan Miller

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Kansas City Software Engineer and Author

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