When I was in high school I had a bad habit of biting off more than I could chew.
In a normal semester I would be on the wrestling team, keeping up with football offseason training, touring on weekends with my band, keeping class grades up, having a social life.
And I’d usually be in the school play/musical, among other things.
(I’m so glad I’ve cut that back in my older years to only freelance consulting, teaching a college class, working full-time in an marketing agency and writing for 3-4 different blogs weekly, all while not having my wife kill me.)
It really all boiled down to time management in high school.
One of the best ways I figured out how to cope was to use my mornings wisely. I would usually drive into school about two hours early and take care of football training and any lingering homework and then use the school facilities to get ready for school.
One thing to note about the school facilities though: they were terrible. For the entire two years I kept up the following schedule, the boys locker room was without hot water in the mornings due to the timers and pumps on the school grounds. This let to a daily routine of taking cold showers to get ready for the day.
Ironically, that may have been the best thing I could have done for myself and find I still do it to this day when I’ve got to blast myself out of a repetitive, overbearing funk.
Nothing wakes you up better to the world around you than a quick hit with a frigid water stream.
Time To Wash up
The interesting thing about a cold shower is that no matter what your hangups and worries were before that water hits you, they all seem to disappear once you’re in that cold stream. Sleepiness? Gone. Sore muscles? Adios. Homework worries? Arrivederci. Fears for the day? May as well be murdered.
Are cold showers fun? Not a chance in hell. But one thing is for sure, they bring you face-to-face with the moment and give you an energy that few other actions can that don’t end in a ambulance ride.
You find that you’re tired and you have to force yourself to write. It’s not as much fun as you remember and you’re thinking of just going back to only writing when you have something important to say. THAT’S the type of slump I’m talking about.
Maybe it’s time for a cold shower.
The thing about giving your body or your blog a cold shower is that it won’t be fun. You might enjoy the effects afterwards, but you aren’t going to like it in the middle. This will be a shock and maybe even a bit painful.
It’s almost involuntary that you exclaim something like “Sweet Jesus!” or “Holy Moley” or just a random burst of noise and sound because you’re just not used to the experience.
How do you give your blog a cold shower, you might be asking? Well, this won’t be a simple as just not turning the shower spout all the way to comfortable levels. I’m going to give you three scenarios and I want you to choose one of them and next week do it on your blog.
Next week will be your cold shower. It will be a bit of a trial. It will last longer than you feel it should. It will make you focus on everything you’re doing to not waste a single moment or word.
Here we go!
1. Pick one of the following: dogs, Leonardo DiCaprio movies, kitchen utensils. Now, write a different post every, single day next week focused on that one topic or theme. All you posts must be related to the theme you choose, but different enough to not bore your readers. Five posts in a row, all relating [dogs, Leo movies or kitchen utensils] to your blog topic.
2. Write three posts next week, but don’t use a single word (audio, video and images only) and still get your messages and points across.
3. On Monday, write a post that is exactly 1,000 words and makes a clear statement about your niche. On Wednesday, take that same post and edit it down to 500 words keeping all your points in tact. On Friday, edit it down to 250 words keeping your points in tact and post it on your blog.
Choose your poison and get to work.
Next week might be a bit jarring, but that’s the whole idea now isn’t it?
Feel free to comment and let us know which option you are choosing and then come back and link your posts next week in the comments so we can all see how your shower went.