Hello, people of Nora's world. I'm so honored that Nora allowed me to be here. I was a bit nervous when thinking about what I was going to write for you, wonderful people. I wanted to try and do something a bit off the beaten path. I wanted to talk to you super awesome business owners about content consumption. Researching, reading, watching videos, and interacting with everyone else's content can be a real energy drainer.
Checking out the latest article, watching a new video, and even checking out what the latest tweet is talking about can make you feel so overwhelmed. It can also drain all of your energy. While consuming all of this content, you don't leave much time to create your own. Nor do you leave time for your mind to relax and think creatively.
How do you cut down on the chatter and only go through the content that can help your business? Take it from someone who is a content hoarder. At any point during the last year, I had anywhere from 5 to 13 different articles that were opened and waiting to be read by me on my iPhone browser.
I also printed any and all free resources, worksheets, or articles that I wanted to read and go through. I am more of a paper and pen person when it comes to planning. Now that you know how much content I like to keep stashed waiting for me, let me tell you how to cut down on it all.
GATHER ALL OF YOUR CONTENT TOGETHER
This helps make sure that when you start going through all of the content you have saved, want to keep, or need to just get rid of it is in the same place and easy to go through. You don't have the opportunity to start this project and then go look for other worksheets that you remembered you had, then taking time to start reading or fill them out, completely forgetting the overall project you started.
I gathered all of the content that I had printed and put it into large binders. After all of the physical content was gathered, I had 3 2-inch binders that were stuffed and ready to be gone through.
My next step was to go through my virtual content stack. The best way to figure out how to sort through all of this content is to again gather all of it in one area. I gathered articles, links, videos, and images that I wanted to go through and created a notebook for it in my Evernote account.
Now, I'm tracking what I've been through and what I want to keep by making a content consumption list in my Asana account. This way I don't have to guess which article or type of content I want to work through next. I can schedule out the days that I want to go through specific content.
TIME TO CUT DOWN
Now it's time to cut down on all of this content. Once you have all of your content in the same place, it's time to eliminate some of it. If you're like me, you couldn't possibly go through all of that content while still moving your business/blog forward.
So, the first thing to do is check for duplicate assignments. If you got a blog business plan worksheet from Nora and then another one from someone else, look through them both and decide which one works best for you. You don't need two worksheets going over the same thing. That's just adding more work for yourself.
Next, look through all of your articles and videos. Read the ones that you're truly interested in and trash the ones that you are like 'eh' about. Don't save them all for a later date. Read it now.
I always have a hard time reading through all of these articles and videos, as I want to takes notes on every single one. I finally had to tell myself that I would only take notes on the articles or videos that were really useful.
Also, I told myself that if the information was that important, then I would remember it when I needed it. I trashed/deleted all of the articles and videos that I went through. Don't save them!
I know how much anxiety going through and trashing or deleting all this content can create. I am always afraid that I am going to miss something or look bad to my community/clients when I don't have the answer to something and so I tend to hang onto all content that gets close to me.
I have had to really trust myself to know the answer or be able to give an answer that will satisfy the question until I can research what it is I'm unsure of. I have had to really trust that I am smart and that just because I am not reading every single article on social media or marketing or business tip, it doesn't mean that I am missing out.
Now that you have organized and got a plan into place for tackling all of the content that you have hoarded up until now, it's time to address how to stop curating bucket loads of new content. Pick a few blogs, brands, or businesses that you want to follow.
Don't pick more than 10 and if you can help it, choose even less than that. This eliminates too much content coming into your life from too many directions.
As for myself, I chose to follow Nora - obviously, Regina, Michael Stelzner, Melyssa Griffin - LOVE her brand by the way, Mariah Coz, the wonder twins of Being Boss and Kelsey of Paper and Oats. I have a few other people that I follow off and on, but these seven people/brands are those that I follow on every social media account and every time a new piece of content comes out of their brilliant minds, I consume it as fast as possible.
Don't be afraid to turn on your content consuming blinders. Trust yourself and the knowledge that you already have. Your business is going to be awesome no matter what you read or watch. You don't need to be consuming content 24/7. You should be focused on producing your own content and enriching your own community.
Who do you follow regularly? Share in the comments below!
If you want to include me in your content consuming posse, I'd be honored. Sign up for my newsletter and some content that will hopefully help you create the business that you've always dreamed of on my website, Bright Colors Happy Things.