As Bloggers, we have Goals and Immediate Gratification Problems. I recently watched “A Head Full of Dreams” on Netflix which is a docufilm about one of the best rock bands Britain had produced, namely Coldplay. During the film Chris Martin, the lead singer was about to go on stage at the very start of his career way back on the 26th of June 1998. Chris said, “By the 26th June 2002, Coldplay or whatever their called will be massive, huge“.
Three days and four years later on the 29th June 2002, Coldplay is headlining at the Glastonbury Festival watch the video…
Beautiful right? It is an excellent film and I implore you to watch it at some point. However not once during the film did Chris mention the word Goal. Think about that for a moment. Did you hear Chris say “In four years’ time my goal on the 26th June 2002 is for Coldplay or whatever they’re called is to be the biggest rock band in the world“? Do you think Chris would have reached that goal? If he had would he be happy? Personally, I think not. It’s the process or the system of building one of the biggest rock bands Chris loves not the outcome.
James Clear of Atomic Habits fame talk’s about goals and systems here…
The problem most aspiring new bloggers have is something we all have and that is our brains. We are hard-wired for immediate gratification. We want to get immediate success from the work we put into writing our own blog and what aligns with our Blogging Goals. This is why most bloggers fail and do not achieve the success they desire; we want the success immediately because that’s how our minds have been hard-wired.Habit Tracking is a way for new bloggers to aspire to become successful bloggers by writing each and every day #PhillDotBlog #AtomicHabits #BloggingTips with @RyanBiddulphClick To Tweet
Ten thousand years ago we were hunter-gatherers and we all worked in little teams to hunt animals on the plains of Africa. We gained immediate success once the team bagged that lion they were hunting. Our brains are not much different now as it was ten thousand years ago and so as such, they require immediate gratification.
Building a successful blogging business is using consistency and being in it for the long haul. You will notice success over time as it’s a marathon and not a sprint. We all want more subscribers, a lower bounce rate, and more people commenting on our posts but it obviously takes time and effort and that immediate dopamine hit is still elusive. However, sometimes publishing a post does make us happy for a short amount of time but then no one comes and reads it making us feel sad.
What we need to do is to fall in love with the process of building a blog. Ryan Biddulph is a perfect example of a prolific blogger. Every day Ryan turns up and writes multiple blog posts for his own and different blogs on the world wide web. Ryan is successful because he is prolific and has fallen in love with the process of writing. Ryan gets instant as well as long-term gratification from writing.
The problem still remains. As a new blogger that instant gratification is still elusive, that dopamine hit is not forthcoming. I know I need to turn up each and every day and write my five hundred or so words every day but when there are so many distractions and my tendency to heavily procrastinate it is a struggle. I can see clearly the process I need to take which for me is writing 500 words a day and reading and commenting on 10 blog posts each day.
In his book Atomic Habits, James Clear talks a lot about good and bad habits and how to break bad ones and make good ones. One of the things James talks about that really resonated with me is Habit Tracking. For me, this provides a quick and easy dopamine hit and a small amount of gratification each time I complete my habit each day. It’s a really simple process but it gives me some instant gratification and programs my mind two write five hundred words daily.
Of course, I do miss a couple of days and sometimes I think that what I write is crap and worthless but the habit-forming of writing daily gets easier over time. The visual aid of the habit tracker I employ above really helps me turn up and write those five hundred words daily. This is something we can all do with a simple word document template. Each night I open this template and its the first thing I see when I enter the office, it’s a visual cue for me to start writing.
Over to You.
How do you overcome your blogging struggles? Do you do what I do above? Do you have any tips or ideas as well? Let me know in a comment below. I hope that you have found this post useful.