When this post goes live, I’ll just about be on my way back from the airport. Not that I’ve been away, just dropping off my teenager to start her adventures on a trip to the US. But it’s coming into holiday season, which always raises the question, what to do with your blog and other content when you’re away.
Here’s a few thoughts.
Just don’t post. Walk away from it. Leave them guessing.
It’s an option. I guess partly it depends on your posting schedule. If you only post once a month, then your trip might mean you don’t miss one at all.
If you post every day then your readers, and Google, are going to notice. If they are really bought into what you do, they might worry, so you might get a flood of social media questions into your whereabouts and wellbeing. Which might be nice. Or not.
Or they might not notice, maybe until you start again. Which then might raise questions. Some will still stay. Some might go.
Tell them you’re going to be away, that the schedule is going on a holiday.
Heck, my most popular post of recent months was one announcing I was sick. On the one hand, I was grateful for the concern. On the other, it took me ten minutes to write and contained nothing actionable. Not sure what to read into that.
But by announcing your absence, you might set up anticipation of what you’re going to share on your return. You might ask for hints and tips on where you’re travelling to, which could be great at engaging people. I find people love to share those kind of things.
I would just say be safe with this kind of things. Burglars don’t have to go round looking for unlocked doors anymore; they just have to read your feed.
I have fabulous housesitters, as readers of The Foodie Gift Hunter blog know. My housesitting aunt and uncle are quite legendary, particularly some of their food quirks.
I love them being here though, as much as they love this area. I know my house is being well looked after by people who understand me, and what I do and don’t do around the house. So, if they have had wild parties, there’s a code of silence amongst the neighbours not to tell me. And they do tidy up very nicely after themselves.
Going on holiday could be the time to get someone else to housesit your blog. Bring a freelance writer onboard to cover your break. Do it with a little notice so you can brief them properly. Or, if you have such a thing, make one of your team guest editor for the time you’re away.
Make sure whoever it is understands the house rules (like don’t drink all the good gin, or use stray apostrophes). Agree on some titles, word length, photographic style. Basically, make it seamless for your readers. A good writer should be able to look at your previous posts and fit right into this.
Take it with you
For some people, writing is not work. Actually, for me, writing is both work and a pleasure. I’ve written Foodie Gift Hunter blog posts from some of the most scenic benches in France. I’ve shared stories of discoveries on the restaurant front.
It’s all a matter of juggling. My daughter was little at that time, so bedtime was earlier, or there were still afternoon naps. And I enjoyed the writing. Aren’t you supposed to do things you enjoy on holiday?
I would say this is an option if you can still give your holiday companions your proper attention, and you enjoy the moments of writing. If it’s going to stress you, keep you from other activities or just being in the moment, then don’t. Everyone deserves, and needs, a break.
Life is too short. Go play in the waves.
Okay, in a perfect world, this is the answer. Have all your posts scheduled way in advance of your trip, never miss a beat. Even cover the period of coming back and dealing with the mountains of laundry.
If that’s you, bravo. You have absorbed and mastered the art of content planning and organisation.
The rest of us? See all previous options. I include myself in this group on too regular a basis. Sometimes when you’re working in your business, the time to work on it is what slides. As small business owners we know that shouldn’t be the case, and we’re all working on it.
This probably sums up life here more of the time.
Whatever you decide, holidays are vital in my book. I will never understand the American working culture or those who don’t take all the paid leave they are owed. We wouldn’t not recharge our devices, why should our bodies, minds and relationships not need the same? Of course, when you’re self-employed or a business owner, it can feel like a tougher ask to take a break. But you’re still only human.
Unplug now, and you’ll plug back in in a better state.
What’s your plan? Or is there a plan? Love to know what you think and how you handle taking a break.