There are days when you don’t have a post ready. When you suddenly realize that you’ve blown your own regular posting schedule and that no new post is going to go live. Your stomach clenches. You panic momentarily. You kick yourself.
No post. How could you have forgotten? What will you do?!
That’s what happened to me this morning around 9am. I’d been having my coffee and checking my email when I realized I’d missed the boat. I cursed under my breath and mentally gave myself that good swift kick.
“Way to go, James. You blew it.”
And then the moment passed and I recouped my sanity. So no post went up this morning. So I didn’t have any extra drafts kicking around.
Did life as I know it alter substantially because I missed my usual 1am posting? No. Did gods strike me down with lightening and take away my crown to cast me out forever? No. Did a slew of angry readers contact me and barrage me for not keeping my schedule? Nope.
In fact, the rest of the morning passed without incident. I finished my coffee, had a chat with a friend, answered some email, worked on a project and basically enjoyed my day. No post?
No big deal.
Now this approach flies in the face of traditional advice, the kind that says you must absolutely keep your schedule and always post consistently at a regular time and on predictable days. You should have months of pre-written posts time-stamped and ready to go, and you should never be caught short. Never. Ever, ever. Consistency is key or thou shalt be doomed.
Well, it’s true. Consistency is good. And because I believe in having a reliable posting schedule that readers can predict, I sat down this afternoon and wrote this post.
But I didn’t rush. I didn’t panic and drop everything when I realized I’d missed the mark. I didn’t tie myself up in knots. I had that momentary “crap, I forgot” moment and made a note to take a bit of time this afternoon and catch up.
Then life went on, and I went back to my coffee.
You see, I didn’t see the point in sweating the small stuff – and you shouldn’t either. Yes, you should keep a reliable, consistent posting schedule and no, you shouldn’t post erratically or throw up stuff whenever you feel like it, but if you miss a rare day or two by accident or because you had stuff going on…
It’s okay. It’s just a blog.
In the grand scheme of life, that missing blog post doesn’t matter that much. Within three days (or even three minutes), no one will remember anyways. Your family will still love you. Your readers will be there for you. Your business, your blog, your reputation or your world won’t crash.
Just make a note to catch up when you can and follow through when you have more time or peace of mind.
And honestly, you’ll do a better job for having given yourself permission to relax. You won’t throw up some crappy post in a panic, the sort that makes readers think, “Oh, filler. Um. Yay?” You won’t splatter out some hasty writing that rambles around and doesn’t make much of a point.
You won’t twist yourself up, feel guilty or berate yourself until your self-esteem is so bruised it can barely limp. You’ll just sit down and say, “Okay, time to write a post now,” and you’ll write it and publish it and that’ll be that.
The world will keep right on turning, and you’ll keep on feeling healthy, happy and relaxed.
Now isn’t that nice?
Your turn: You ever miss a day of posting? How’d you feel about it? What did you do?