In order to sustain a successful online presence, including attracting and maintaining a solid readership base, you need to manage your time well. Not managing your time well will affect how your customers feel about you and how you feel about your site. Be good to your consumers and be good to yourself, too.

Tools like email, social media sites, feed readers, etc can easily eat up all your time without you even realizing where your time went. Don't fall prey to all those "shiny pennies" out there. Just because something is interesting and eye catching, doesn't mean you need to put everything else on hold for it every time.

To successfully manage the available time you have for your blog or your online business, start off by figuring out how much time you have and what tasks need to get done in that time. If you don't know how long certain tasks take for you, then start tracking them to determine a minimum-to-maximum time range for each. Then start scheduling those activities like you would schedule an appointment, and stick to that schedule.

Realize that it takes time to develop a writing habit. Don't expect all posts to involve the same amount of work. Some articles or posts take more time to write than to edit, other times the opposite is true. Sometimes you can write something straight through in record time, other times you'll struggle with every sentence. Expect that and let each post be what it needs to be to get its message across.

Readers are a little more forgiving for newcomers that may have occasional gaps in their posting history. Work to eliminate gaps altogether. A regular less frequent schedule is usually better than a sporadic unpredictable schedule. Readers like to know what to expect.

Use this same scheduling process for other relevant tasks, too. Decide what times of day you want to be on the social media sites (e.g., before work, lunch periods, break times, after work, etc) then stick to it. Overcome your anxiety or fear of "what if I miss something", generally the important stuff gets referenced often enough in social media venues and/or is searchable.

Find tools that can help you manage your time, such as search, auto-responders, feed readers, bookmarks, tags, alerts, marked/shared Favorites. Build in efficient ways to monitor those information streams.

Don't let yourself get distracted by the fire-hose of information, tools, and apps out there. While useful, these can also be time killers. Don't let them be your reason for shortchanging your customers' experience on your site. Be sure to manage your time like you manage your money (hopefully you are being meticulous about that, too, if not, apply these same time management ideas there, too!)

To read more articles written by Helen Hoefele, visit her blog at: where she focuses on writing thoughtful articles that encourage more people to think in ways that are constructive to improving their lives and the world around them. On her blog, you can easily subscribe to her free (only once monthly) newsletter. You can also follow her on Twitter at: at figmentations.

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