We all go through periods of not feeling like pursuing something we’ve committed to, especially if that something doesn’t provide instant rewards or seem worth the time. Blogging can easily become one of these things. It often feels like you’re writing to no one, alone at your desk or in a café, typing away. Your ideas for blogs run dry, and then what? Sigh, every blog is so much work! And, working during your “free” time just feels wrong.
But blogging is really important. It establishes your web presence, increases traffic to your site as well as your Google ranking, and ultimately, grows your practice, which is what you want and need. So, you need to keep the ball rolling with your blog. If only you had the motivation.
The Key To Staying Motivated
Professor Hugo Kehr and Dr. Peter Gröpel recently published an article about how unconscious motivation influences willpower, and they found that the key to motivation is these three points.
- We have conscious objectives and desires that drive us to achieve our goals.
- We have unconscious motivations based on deeply held emotional beliefs that propel us forward.
- We can build on our existing skills and capabilities to achieve our objectives.
When these three elements occur simultaneously, people are happy and motivated. But if one ingredient is missing, we need willpower to bridge the gap. When you’ve lost the willpower to blog, use these five easy tips to keep motivation and morale high.
5 Ways to Stay Motivated To Keep Blogging
1. Use your blog as a way to connect
At first glance, this may not seem like the most motivating reason to blog. But, using your blog posts as a way to connect with your readers (who are also likely your potential clients) is one of the most powerful things you can do.
When you start to think of your blog posts as a tool to connect with your readers, rather than thinking of it as something you’re “supposed to do,” the motivation appears.
While a reader can learn a lot about you as a therapist on your specialty pages and about page on your website, the connection really occurs on your blog posts. With each post, you can share common struggles that people may be experiencing, pain they may be feeling, ways to feel better, and so much more. By sharing this type of valuable information, your readers will be able to connect with you on a much deeper level. Once they feel like they know what type of therapist you are, and how you can help them with their specific issue (an issue that you’ve blogged about extensively), they’ll be much more likely to pick up the phone and schedule a consultation with you.
If getting new clients isn’t motivation enough, I don’t know what is. 🙂
2. Avoid Comparing Yourself to Others
If you’re anything like me, then you’ve played the “comparison game” many times. You start getting excited about a new idea or goal — maybe it’s finally starting to blog once a month — then the not-so-motivating thoughts about how “I’m not good enough,” or “Who am I to think I could start blogging when so-and-so therapist already has 1000 posts..what’s the point?” or “Hundred’s of therapists have written about this topic before, what makes me any different?” start to clog up your brain space.
Believe me, you’re not alone. Comparing yourself to others will get you nowhere. And, it will prevent you from creating the practice you have always dreamed of.
When you stop comparing yourself to others, you’ll be much more motivated to blog!
3. Establish a regular routine.
As you saw above in the Hugo Kehr and Dr. Peter Gröpel study, we have conscious objectives and desires that drive us to achieve. Creating a routine with measurable benchmarks will help motivate you. Go somewhere specific to work on your blog – the same café at the same time and day every week. Always keep a journal in case you have a blogging idea or epiphany. Allow that inspiration to flow from anywhere—common topics or themes you discuss with your clients, conversations you overhear in public, other blogs, social media or common therapy misunderstandings from friends or family.
Before you sit down to write your blog, it’s helpful to have an outline. Have an idea, and make a quick sketch to explore how that idea can bloom.
Human beings love gratification and positive reinforcement. Even though blogging doesn’t always seem instantly gratifying, making benchmarks can help track steps toward your overall goal; and, remind you that you’re doing a good job.
4. Track your progress!
Although blogging consistently is very important, it’s equally important to continue practices that work and eliminate those that do not. If you haven’t already, familiarize yourself with Google Analytics. Google Analytics can help you track which blogs your users interact with and respond to the most.
5. Reward yourself. You deserve it.
Blogging is hard work and takes a lot of time. When you hit a benchmark, like your 100th, blog post for example, make sure that you congratulate yourself. You may even consider sharing your success on social media to encourage people to visit your website. Having a reward based system in place for your blogging practice is invaluable, and will help you maintain your blog with ease.
Remember Why You Blog
The motivations for blogging differ for everyone. For some, it’s a hobby, a way to educate or inform, and for others, it’s a way to sell products or services and make money. For therapists, it’s a way to increase traffic to your website, which ultimately means new clients and more appointments in your office. But more than that, it’s a way to connect with your website visitors—the people who are likely looking for help with their specific issue. When you feel unmotivated to blog, remind yourself why you’re blogging in the first place. Although it may not seem like anyone is on the other side of that screen when you’re writing, write as if you’re talking to someone you know in your practice. Even if it doesn’t feel like you’re writing to anyone, know that you are reaching potential clients through your blog posts.
If you have any questions at all about blogging, we want to talk to you! Contact us here.