Writing Every Day and the 80/20 Rule

I haven’t published a blog post in a while, but I still write every day while spending most of the time upgrading content. The 80/20 rule taught me why.

If you’ve been following my blog, you’ll know that I’ve recently completed the 100 Day Challenge (publishing a blog post every day).

In today’s post, I want to give you a brief update on writing every day and the 80/20 rule I’ve learned since, and how the 80/20 rule can help you optimise your life and work.

Although the challenge was taken nearly a month ago, it still feels like yesterday because I’ve been writing every day, even after the challenge.

I mentioned in the 10 lessons I’ve learned post that I’d continue to write every day to improve my writing.

True to my word, that’s exactly what I’ve been doing except that, unlike during my challenge, I didn’t publish it every day.

If you were wondering about not seeing a new post for the past 4 days, that’s why.

According to my Google calendar, I had skipped publishing a post for 7 days this month.

I want to share the reasons and what I’ve been doing when I didn’t publish a blog post.

The 80/20 Rule

You’ve probably heard about roughly 80% of wealth worldwide being controlled by 20% of the rich.

That’s essentially what the 80/20 rule is.

It’s also known as the Pareto Principle.

The 80/20 rule was named after Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto after he discovered that approximately 80% of the land in Italy was owned by 20% of the population.

After the discovery, he did surveys in other countries from which he drew the same conclusion.

When I first heard about it, I got annoyed with my conclusion:

The rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

I wasn’t resentful for the rich, though.

I got annoyed with myself … why I couldn’t be that top 20%. ha.

Anyway, I digress.

The Pareto Principle is widely adopted and taught as a framework to optimise output.

It’s applied in the business world to increase efficiency and effectiveness of the business operation.

The 80/20 rule states that 80% result / output comes from 20% effort / input.

For example, in business, 20% of customers yield 80% of sales. 20% of sales reps bring in 80% of the business.

Which means 20% of activities account for 80% results.

You can see the implication of the rule.

An organisation would use the rule to identify and zero in on 20% activities, whether it’s a division of the business or personnel, as they account for 80% output.

They would use it as a guide to distribute resources effectively e.g. establish an efficient reward system.

Blogging – the 80/20 Rule

The 80/20 rule applies to personal endeavours too.

The prime example is my blog, which explains the 7 days of not publishing a blog post.

I’ve learned that nearly over 80% of my blog traffic comes from less than 20% of the content.

Although publishing every day disciplined me, 80% of the output from 20% of the content tells me I need to focus on those top 20% of the content and improve them while working on the rest.

I’m ashamed to say that there are quite a few a lot of “half-baked” content.

So much so, I can’t promote them on Pinterest until I “fix” them.

I’ve been updating old posts as much as I could, but I’m always short on time.

And those “half-baked” content seems to grow each day!

I had to give up publishing a post which still takes a long time for me so I could give TLC to some old posts.

Writing is easy. Publishing, not so much. Ha.

So, as to writing every day and the 80/20 rule, I’ll continue to write every day (but not publishing as often) and zero in on content that attracts most readers.

The 80/20 Rule and Productivity

Whether it’s for your long-term goals or daily to-do list, you can use the 80/20 rule to maximise your productivity.

For instance, when you have 10 things to do, the chances are 2 things on your to-do list will produce the most impactful result than the remaining 8 combined.

Identify those two and begin your day with them, no matter how strenuous they are.

You’ll have the most productive day.

If you begin your day with any of those (unimportant) 8 things on your list, you’ll likely feel you’ve been busy all day long but achieved very little.

The 80/20 Rule in All Areas of Life

The 80/20 rule applies to almost every area of our life.

Out of 10 friends, 2 friends are more likely to make you happier than all others put together.

They are the closest friends: you can tell anything and everything.

They make you feel good, uplifted and positive each time you meet up. They’re more like family than friends.

20% of friends and family make your life meaningful. Cut out the time you spend with 80% of people you don’t connect with.

20% of the food you consume contributes to 80% of your health. Go through the food you eat 20% of the time and see its impact on your health.

If your health is optimal, keep feeding yourself with that 20%! If you have a health issue, you need to dump some food in that 20%.

20% of bad habits or good habits…

The list goes on and on.

Write a List

Make a list for each area of your life.

Life goals, daily goals (to-do list), relationship, money, habits, food, exercise and so on.

Write the most impactful activities (20%) that generate 80% results.

It doesn’t have to be exactly 80/20. It may be 70/30 or 90/10.

When you pen it down (or type it out), your insight becomes clearer and concrete.

The 80/20 rule enables you to identify your core activities so you can optimise them or remove them.

Final Thoughts

Writing every day and the 80/20 rule I’ve learned along the way helped me optimise my day.

The 80/20 rule helps focus on essential activities, therefore, we spend our resources more effectively and efficiently.

Not only that, it also ensures that we keep reviewing our day, goals and life choices, therefore, living intentionally and purposefully.

When you incorporate the 80/20 rule to all areas of your life, you’re bound to have a more productive and happier life.

My Favourite Writing Tools

Grammarly (Free) – a great writing tool. Help you with spelling and grammar errors. It’s SO worth it even if all you do is writing an email or on social media.

BlueHost – get a super easy and reliable hosting plan from BlueHost. They also give you a free domain name for one year. Sign up here and start your blog in a few minutes.

Namecheap – get a dirt-cheap domain name if you change your mind and fancy a new domain name later (like I did).

Tailwind – an absolute must-have for Pinterest to schedule hundreds and thousands of pins and save tons of time. Sign up here and get one month free!

Mailerlite – another must-have to create email marketing campaigns: sign up forms, landing pages, surveys and so on; free up to 1,000 subscribers.

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4 Comments

I had not even considered this. I need to figure out what type of blog posts are driving the most traffic and work from there. Most of my social media doesn’t lead to post readers as they are just viewing the images but something is driving readers as I receive comments… Hmmm… Now to do some logistics.

I do however need to go through and clean up my blog content. I get overwhelmed when I try to connect older content and newer. It is important to get readers into a loop of posts though so I know it needs to be done. Maybe in the winter when things slow down on the homestead.

Would love to have your thoughts on my blog if you have time: http://www.homesteadwithaview.com

Blessings,
Story Burke

Hi Story (cool name!),

Love your homesteading lifestyle!

I know what you mean by “get overwhelmed”. I think we all feel the same especially at the beginning of our blogging journey. But it’s obvious you got this!

I took a look at your blog and I particularly like your “Now to move toward working from home FULL TIME. I can do this. I just know I can do this.”

I think that’s the most important thing: believing in yourself that you can do it. I say this because that’s all I have. ha!

Your niche is quite different from mine so what may work for me may not work for you and vice versa. From my research, I learned that “listicle, why or how-to” posts do well. So, I focused on those (and still do). It turned out to be true as this type of posts attracts the most traffic. It makes sense because they are easy on the eye, (and I hope) helpful, encouraging or motivational.

Many people skim through content. If you use headlines and subheads throughout the content, it will give readers a better reading experience. I also avoid a wall of text. I used to but now I write in short sentences and paragraphs only, following many blog experts’ advice. Blog writing is different from what we’ve been taught in many ways.

I wish I were half as good as your writing! You have a flair for writing.

The trick is, finding a fine balance between what you want to talk about and what your readers want to read about. Whether your readers find it relatable, motivational, humorous or helpful with practical advice, it’s gotta be about them in some way. They’ll then check out post after post which reduces your bounce rate.

And I’d say, be aggressive with Pinterest Promo. It’s the best way to increase traffic.

Thanks for stopping by and wish you the very best!

Hi Sage! I enjoyed your 80/20 habit for better writing 🙂 I was searching for a list of books to make my writing better and it looks like you have shared some. I’ll take a look at it.

P.S I use Grammarly and Tailwind for free too! And use them to also share my thoughts to help shape better lifestyles. If you have time come check it out http://www.thevisualmuse.com

Thanks Melody – hope you find a list of books I have on writing helpful. Yay – you’re another “muse” (love it!) All the best with your blog!

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