Why is it that some days you can just sit down and write good quality blog posts, articles or optimise your web content easily and on other days your content just will not flow?
A recent article we read gave us one explanation of why a copywriter’s creative output can vary so much from one day to the next.
The article explained that copywriters (as well as computer programmers) are usually the “doers” in an organisation and they allocate their time completely differently to people involved in sales or manufacturing.
For example a sales representative views each working day as an eight hour ‘slot’ and they will then work out how they can make best use of that time – how many sales appointments can they make, how much admin do they have to do, how much sales planning time is needed etc. On the other hand most copywriters (and other doers) will segment their day into two big blocks: morning and afternoon. They will plan their work load into either the morning or afternoon segment and this is fine until distractions and other interruptions occur in the middle of one of these segments. When this happens they can lose their ‘creative momentum’ and achieve very little in an entire morning or afternoon.
Why Can’t Copywriters just deal with Distractions like anyone else?
Copywriters tend to make ‘to do lists’ and before they even switch on their computer, they will know exactly which four or five tasks they are going to finish before they break for lunch. Again this works fine, until a distraction occurs before lunch, for example a client calls at 10:30am requesting an urgent meeting before lunch!
When this happens the copywriters well made plans go ‘out of the window’ and they need to re-plan their morning: A typical thought process might be:
“now I can complete the one blog post I am working on, attend the client meeting, which might last an hour so that leaves me with less than an hour before lunch so rather than write another article, which I will not be able to complete, I will browse the internet to research future topics, check e-mails and read the news until lunchtime”.
Unfortunately, distractions and interruptions are inevitable, especially in creative environments. Here are a few tips to help you handle them:
- Structure and Plan your day. Some articles might take just 40min or so whilst others require 3 hours or more. Start your morning and afternoon sessions with the most time-consuming jobs and leave the shorter tasks which can be done as ‘fill ins’ between meetings, lunch and breaks.
- Let people know your preferred times for meetings. Let your own team members and key clients know that meetings suit you better if they are arranged back-to-back after lunch (by doing this you have at least six hours of writing time before you go to any meetings).
- Bookmark web pages. If you were in the middle of researching an important topic on the web before you got interrupted, bookmark the pages rather than closing your tabs immediately so that you can easily continue where you left off without having to start again.
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