Blogging tools I use!

Blogging tools I use!


alright hey guys in this video I’m gonna
show you all the things that you don’t actually need to be a professional
blogger but they’re the things that I am now using so when I started and it was
actually crossed the threshold into feeding my family with my blog and all
that I was doing it all from a very cheap laptop I think was like a $300
laptop and a little microphone that I bought off Amazon for probably 15 bucks
and that was how I was running my entire business and over the years I have like
just tried to make it a bit more enjoyable for myself and and I found
that I work better on a desktop than a laptop and I’ve just learned a lot you
know from doing this for a while so I want to just show you some of the gear
that I’m using and like I said you don’t need any of this stuff but it is stuff
that as you get further along might make things a bit easier and just kind of
help you navigate through alright so since I’m actually talking on this mic
we’ll just kind of start here and just kind of work around to some of the other
stuff so this is actually a new toy the heck got it’s a really cool microphone
it’s called Shure sm7b i think it is sm7b and it’s a really just fun
microphone that actually fun fact was used by Michael Jackson on the Thriller
album I believe for most of the vocals but it’s a really cool like I’ve
struggled with condenser microphones catching too much noise around the desk
in too much typing and stuff like that and it probably is because I don’t know
exactly what I’m doing with them but this one is a dynamic microphone but it
kind of behaves a little bit like a condenser in the tone that it seems to
be getting but this has been a really nice upgrade and this is a recent
upgrade that I haven’t had for a long time but a lot of people use this
microphone and I’ve been very very happy with it since I started and then
connecting that is this little road kind of Swing arm thing and this just makes
everything really easy because I can be over here talking typing I can be doing
a podcast and kind of pull it in and out of the frame a little bit if I need to I
can also do Skype calls really easily or I do a lot of my phone calls on Gmail as
well so it’s just really nice having boom arm and this is the best boom arm
that I found back in this other corner I have another boom arm that I use for a
year or two and and that one’s okay but this one is just a lot smoother and it
just feels really good it’s kind of moving right along yeah so it’s just a
basic XLR cable and we’ll get to kind of how this is all wired up in a minute but we have the Amazon echo dot this is such a fun toy hey Alexa what’s your name – my name is Alexa – so that’s Alexa and so anyways this is really fun so I just have this hooked up
to these speakers over here which I’ll get to in a second and so I played music
through this and ask Alexa to add things to my calendar or what the temperature
is outside or other random things start timers all that stuff so so yeah these
things are like 30 bucks or something right now so that was a good purchase as
far as I’m concerned instead I have a dual monitor setup and these are cheap
monitors that I’ve had for many many years
they’re probably three or four years old but they work fine minus this little spot
right here they’re still working really good and they’re just Asus brand so
they’re not anything really great but they do the job and that’s really all I
need right here this is kind of how we have the audio setup so this is like at
a tascam I think it’s called a u.s. 100 but
basically it’s a USB audio interface and what that allows me to do is get the
microphone going you know so we’re gonna run into this XLR cable here and that’s
connected back up in here and then this plugs into the Mac Mini computer which
is down below I have everything kind of nested underneath the top of this and
and so what this allows me to do is just get better quality audio have some audio
controls up here it has a headphone out so I could connect and actually see how
my audio sounds right now as I’m doing it and in any way so with a mic like
this you kind of need something like that to give you that extra gain and to
pull your volume up so this is just something and I bought this years ago I
had a lot of stuff I had my old band days I was in a rock band a
while ago and uh and honestly just until I switched this when I was using
the microphone that I used in my old band like literally 15 years ago so
anyway so this is a tascam USB or 100 I think and there’s a there’s plenty of
little USB audio interfaces like this and this one has worked well for me one
of and I don’t know enough about all of them to know what the major differences
are but what I have found that I really really like a lot is that with my
current setup and using this I can be on a Skype call and use this mic and have
the audio from the other person come through the speakers so rather than
having to wear headphones to keep it from feeding back in them hearing an
echo and stuff like that I can with this current setup I can do it like this and
have their audio come through the speaker and I don’t have to wear
headphones which I like a lot I hate having to wear headphones on stuff so
anyway so that’s that this monitor arm here is a I forgot I don’t know what
brand it is I’ll link all this stuff up but I think it’s a heller
or something like that and it’s so it’s just connects these two monitors and it
allows you to move them up and down vertically so because this is a standing
desk I can you know I can get them right where I need them according to my
chiropractor he said like he told me I’m supposed to have my eyes like right in
the middle of the thing and not be looking down you know he said that’s
like one of the best things for your spine so so I can get them exactly where
I want and this thing was like $30 in Amazon or something and it works really
nice I can just you know pull these out and around and move them wherever I want so they’re just yeah they’ve been really
really great it was a really good $30 purchase off Amazon and then over in
this corner we got the Western Digital my my passport so this is just an
external hard drive that I have and it’s powered by the Thunderbolt cable which
is something that I like because I hate when I have to have two cords coming out
of something instead of one so some external hard drives and I don’t
know how many are like this anymore but some external hard drives make make you
plug it into the wall and I just hate that so this is just powered by
Thunderbolt so that’s good so we back everything up on there down below which
I don’t have a real easy way of showing this but down below we have Mac Mini
tucked up under here as well as a couple other things and you can also see while
you’re down there that I hate cables and I hate seeing cables and so we have
these little hide some of the cables and and I don’t know what brand they were or
anything like that but I bought those off the Amazon as well and they just
helped kind of keep the desk a little bit neater and cleaner and that’s
something that um yeah I enjoy a bit so up top we have we actually have two of
these these are the Logitech c920 I believe video cams and uh and I have
another one over here on this boom arm and these are the best that I have found
for actual webcams that you just kind of plug in I’ve done a pretty decent amount
of research on this and I’ve tried a handful and these are just by far the
best that I found in pretty much they seem to be the India industry standard
like most bloggers who are doing kind of any kind of remotely serious video or
doing interviews or anything like that where they’re recording it this just
tends to be what most of them are using so I’m pretty happy with that as a
webcam and then like I said we have this on this this is my old boom arm which I
used to have our microphone on until it like somehow over here like it just
chopped off the XLR cable or something like that and so now I have my camera on
it so I can move my camera around and I have a lot more flexibility with where I
can put the camera and stuff like that so it’s not necessarily something that I
have to have but just since I had to laying around I figured I’d take
advantage of it and throw the camera on there and I just got a there’s a little
adapter that you can you know so a normal boom arm like this comes with a
a screw or it’s threaded so you can put a microphone clip mic holder clip
thingamajigger I forget what they’re called you can just screw that on there
but I bought an adapter here that adapts to like a standard like camera bottom
and that’s what is on the underside of these the c920 s and so that’s how
that’s kind of screwed up in there alright so coming further over these
monitors these are not exactly from my old band days but they are from my music
studio that I had so they’re krk rockets they’re just they’re powered speakers
and they sound awesome they’re possibly overkill but I just like good audio and
I like hearing good music like not through a tinny speaker and and so I
just have those mounted up on the wall just up out of the way and that’s been
yeah that makes me happy ok and then up top we have a little GoPro which I don’t
use a ton of and it’s actually recording right now and you know I just have that
up there to get another angle sometimes on some of the stuff I’m recording just
so I don’t know it’s just kind of fun and it makes editing a little bit easier
so that’s kind of what’s going on there oh this is a pair of headphones that I
bought that I really like a lot I can’t remember the name of the brand but I
will link them up and they’re just really really sleek and they sound great
and they’re like kind of a direct can to consumer company so you can get the
product that’s a whole lot better for a whole lot less with them and that’s kind
of what I like anyway so I’ve enjoyed these a lot these have been really
really good and I guess coming to the keyboard so I have also tried a whole
bunch of keyboards over the years and this is my favorite one by far this is a
Microsoft like something 4,000 I forgot what and it’s an old keyboard and
actually has a wire and you know and I already said that I hate wires but I
just like this keyboard that much that it’s worth it to me you know so that’s
kind of why I have this wired keyboard and then if you come back over here
you’ll notice that if you look at all the keys they’re actually a little bit
different and I go too far into this right now but I am
using a Dvorak keyboard and so I put all these stickers on here and so the Dvorak
keyboard is basically real remapped I don’t know if that’s the
right term or not but basically all the letters are in different places and what
I learned from doing some research is that the standard QWERTY keyboard I mean
literally is like I don’t know it’s like more than a hundred years old or
something like that and and it wasn’t originally designed not for us to be
typing on it so the bottom line is that it’s a very inefficient way to type and
you know so actually our actual finger distances are going far further than
they need to because it’s just not the most efficient layout of a keyboard I
mean the Dvorak keyboard on the other hand is far more efficient and so
typically people will actually use about half the distance in their finger
movements that they would with a qwerty key with a QWERTY keyboard and then you
know and then also a lot of the the placements of things makes a lot of
typing less awkward and you know and you can talk to your doctor about this I
don’t know how scientifically proven this is but I’ve heard a lot of
suggestions that it will help you minimum minimize carpal tunnel syndrome
as well by using these keyboards so it took me a good amount of time to kind of
switch and get caught up to speed it was about a year investment before I could
kind of get back up to speed because it’s completely different so when I
started I was like down to like five words a minute and and I’m now back up
to around 60 words a minute is you know which is where I was before and I think
I will probably surpass my old speed because like I said it is more efficient
but I’m still just getting it nailed down but um but that’s the weird thing I
do with my keyboard there and then over here I have this like Razer DeathAdder
like 3500 or something like that and one of the things about mice with for gamers
is that they need them to be very very precise and and I actually don’t do
really any gaming or anything like that but I like a very
nice mouse that I can move quickly across the screen and it’ll land like
right where I want it and it’s just one of those things that I feel like I can
get more work done you know so really really small minor tweak but I think
probably you know over the course of years it’s it’s helping me be more
productive and save more time and things like that and this is also wired which
bothers me a bit but basically when you have a wire running you generally have a
more seamless signal than what you’re doing it via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi or
something like that so so anyway so that’s why there’s a wire on that as
well and there are there are plenty of USB and bluetooth mouse or mice that
I’ve used that have been really really great but the precision of this one is
my favorite so far that I’ve used and so then now we’re to this desk and this is
a fairly new addition as well this is the autonomous I don’t know if it has a
model number or not but it’s there standing sit desk and it’s just I really
like it a lot you can just program the thing to different heights so you can
pick you know sitting height that you like and then a standing height and then
just hit your button and then it just goes right back up to the spot that you
want it and I typically sit I split the day right about now for a
while I was standing probably 75% of the day and then sitting for an hour or two
but like right now I’m typically splitting the day and if you haven’t
used a standing desk I highly recommend it because at first you’re worn out
because you’re standing and you know even after an hour to standing you kind
of feel a little bit worn out or at least I did but after doing it a few
weeks really like I started getting more energized doing it like I love doing
interviews I do all of my interviews Skype interviews or podcasts anything
like that all that stuff anytime I do webinars live workshops I’m always
standing because I feel like my energy just stays higher
not to mention like all the long-term health benefits I heard I read this stat
that if you stand I think four hours a day over
the course of the year it’s like running like 12 marathons or something like that
like the equivalent I don’t know if it’s exercise or what I’m not really sure but
but anyway there’s just a lot of health benefits at standing over sitting all
day and so this desk has been really great and it was surprisingly
inexpensive like their cheapest version like I got a walnut top you can get like
I think a little bit of a cheaper top and you can and I have like a stronger
motor because I have the two monitors and stuff like that but you can get a
cheaper version for I think like 350 bucks or something and anyway so it’s
just really really cool and I’ve been really happy with this
this little guy I’ll just show you this because there’s no drawer or anything
like that and I don’t like having a ton of stuff but this little thing just kind
of turns out and in anyway so this has been kind of a fun little way to hide
some stuff and whatever and since we’re in here these little glasses I don’t
remember who made these does it say right here hi there how do I look do I look good I’ve found that when I wear them like they’re designed to minimize like I strain with working at a
computer and I have noticed when I’m staring at the screen for eight hours
and I have these things on I feel less eye fatigue I feel like a little bit
less of a chance to have a headache and things like that so these are something
that I don’t you I forget to use as much as I should but I have noticed that they
help and if you’re into pens at all this is one of my favorite pens that I use
and it’s called the Retro 1951 Tornado and this has been a joy to write with
and yeah it’s actually been fun and I didn’t know that yeah I didn’t realize
how if you spend a few dollars on a pen it actually can feel a whole lot better
but but yeah I really enjoyed this pen a lot so so anyway so that’s that oh I
need to mention this down here so if you’re doing a standing desk it’s really
important that you have a decent standing mat because it’s a really big
part of the equation and and from all my research this is my favorite one that I
have I’ve tested a couple of these and this
is my favorite one this is called the Ergo driven and this is another thing I
remember talking to my chiropractor about she was saying that if you get a
mat and it’s completely flat you should move around or like create a pile of
books to stand on or something but just like kind of be moving your elevation
just so you’re not completely flat footed that’s the whole time and that’s
what’s great about this one is that it gives you all these different spots so
just kind of like move around a little bit while you’re doing it and changing
things and so it’s just been really really great and it’s it’s not as soft
it’s not the softest one that I’ve ever used but I don’t think that that you
know I my initial thought was the softer it is the less fatigued I’m gonna feel
at the end of the day and in reality I don’t think that’s the case I think it’s
more about moving around and being on different level terrain and stuff like
that so this one has been really good I’ve been really happy with it and I
also like this that I can drag it just with my foot because all the other ones
that I had I believe I couldn’t do this I had to get down on my hands and knees
and like pick it up and slide it and so this is just kind of nice that I can do
that and then this is my chair when I
actually use a chair this is a one this is a Herman Miller Aeron and the Herman
Miller chairs obviously are expensive chairs but I got agreed to you on
Craigslist for this and you might notice if you follow any of our other courses
but basically I am like a craigslist and eBay fanatic
I try to buy everything used win at all possible and then I try to sell off the
stuff that I buy at the same price on eBay so I do tend to buy expensive
things sometimes when I’m done with them I sell them back and sometimes make more money than I paid for them initially because I bought them used so this is a
great chair like just a really really good chair and I got a steal on it on
Craigslist and I’ve been using it for a few years and whenever I sit this is
what I’m sitting in and I’ve been very very happy with it
we have a really old Roomba and it’s like probably five generations old but
it has allowed me to so you know what you’re looking at is
this is my office and it’s not it’s outside the house I actually rented a
one-bedroom apartment and that’s what we’re in right now and this is kind of
where I have my office and long story short office rental space here is just
really really expensive and you know and honestly I’m paying barely any more than
people who have like about a third the space with no windows and as you
probably have seen I’ve windows all around here I have a pool I have a
kitchen I have my own private bathroom obviously just yeah I can control the
temperature which man my last office space was terrible I yeah the neighbors
always changed it and made it terribly uncomfortable there but here I have
complete control so so anyway and then I have a room over here that I can have a
roommate which I have had a roommate paying rent before so that makes it even
cheaper than renting an office space so all that said this is my office and
that’s my Roomba and Roomba is great I wouldn’t I personally wouldn’t buy one
new because I think they’re too expensive but I bought this for like 140
bucks off eBay and every day at the same time I just set a timer one time and
then every day we as soon as I walk out of the office Roomba goes and sweeps
everything up and so my floors always look nice so you can’t beat that this is
my old standing sit desk and I actually did like it a lot I liked the two levels
and this was one I bought off Amazon it was a little bit cheaper than this
autonomous one but not like a ton cheaper but I like the two levels about
it it just had some cool things about it but there’s no button to press it to
make you go up and down so you have to turn the knob to make it go up and down
and it really doesn’t take that long it probably takes twenty maybe thirty
seconds to get it from one height to the next but it’s amazing how little
friction can actually keep you from doing something that’s good for you so
if I was sitting in the afternoon or sitting in the morning and I want to
stand in the afternoon or something I now have to stand up and spin that thing
around for 30 seconds to get it up to my standing height
and in anyway and I found that just wasn’t doing it and so I would just
sit through the afternoon and anyway it’s it’s just amazing how little
friction can keep you from doing what the good thing is you need to be doing
and so I decided I’m gonna get something like that we’re gonna press a button and
so I’m gonna be selling this on Craigslist very soon and seeing what we
can get out of it but this was a good purchase though I was really been
using this for probably two years and I got the stuff Amazon and highly
recommend it if you know if this knob thing is not gonna slow you down anyway
alright so that’s kind of like my desktop everyday setup all the stuff
that I’m using but I want to dive into my kind of mobile setup I guess and this
is basically what I’m using when I’m on the road because we live out of town
from our family so we’re traveling a good amount I’m working out of hotels a
decent amount and so this is just my mobile kit more or less and this is a
bag I bought off of Etsy I believe yeah how was that see I think and I actually
had a really nice Saddleback bag that was about this size that I loved and it
was like the thickest leather like just so dreamy and in this bag was just
really really great but I found that and one of the great things about running a
blog the guy from saddlebag actually traded
me a month’s worth of advertising for a bag so he ran an ad on my side for a
month and I got one of his like five hundred dollar bags which was pretty fun
and anyway so the bag itself was just great it was just awesome and they if
you don’t know about Saddleback stuff you should look them up because they
just make really really great and other stuff and and I liked it a lot but it
just wasn’t practical for me there’s they don’t use any zippers like
everything is like flaps like this which is fine on some stuff but I it just it
just wasn’t a practical bag for me it just didn’t work and so I still wanted
something leather but I wanted something that was a bit more broken in and so I
found this beauty you know I’ve been happy with this and this is not nearly
like the full grain leather that saddleback stuff is made out of but I
still really like it so anyway so what I’m typically using is this is my
MacBook Air and I honestly don’t like MacBooks that much I actually like
Chromebooks a lot more and on top of that they’re immensely cheaper but since
I do use a Mac Mini over here and that’s my main system I tend to use a MacBook
Air regrettably I honestly like I used to
have a Chromebook and actually liked it better but that’s what I’m typically
using and this is just like this thing is really cool I forgot what this thing
is called grid it maybe yeah this thing and so you can just put all your junk on
here and just kind of organize on this cool little thing gridded cocoon maybe
it’s called and and so so anyway so I just have a couple of my charges that I
normally need so like you know for my phone or this is like a micro USB which
charges like everything else in the world other than an iPhone just a thumb
drive that I use sometimes this is the actual plug for both of those to plug in
if I need to headphones with the mic so if I need to do a Skype interview or
something like that I can use the headphones and have the microphone right
there this is an anchor wireless mouse that I really like a lot so that gets
the job done this is just a basic like audio cable to plug into a rental car or
something like that and then this is also a really cool pen – I like this one
a lot especially because of its small size now this is called the space pen
and this pen was designed like it’s called the space pen because it
literally was designed to be used in space like in the 50s or 60s I guess I
guess 60s and I didn’t realize it would be difficult to have a pen that would
work in space but apparently I don’t know like the ink like this one kind of
zero-gravity thing or something we’re I don’t know but anyway this pen will work
in space if you ever go up there if you hop I want to Elon Musk’s jet rides up
there or rocket rides up there this pen will work but it writes really smoothly
it’s just another nice pen that I like a lot but
that’s pretty much it like this is pretty much all I have in here to get
the job done oh I have a mousepad this is a it’s kind of a nice mousepad
it’s a leather mousepad I got I’m just gonna match as a bag and I use that
sometimes and most times I don’t need it with that but depending on you know what
the table is like at the hotel I’m working on I might use that and then I
typically use a competetive a composition notebook I personally love
these and yeah I typically have one of these per year that I just go through
and just take notes and add things in and and that’s just kind of what I’m
working with but that is pretty much all I have in the bag and that’s like my
mobile setup that I’m using whenever I’m on the road
which is a lot closer to what I had really for the first couple years of
blogging but but I prefer to be working at my desktop it’s just I’ve gotten used
to the two monitor setup and kind of splitting my things out on different
screens I really have gotten used to my keyboard and I’m just a lot faster I
feel I can move around a lot better interviews are immensely better because
the audio quality the video quality things like that are better and things
like that alright so I think that is pretty much it so that’s my stuff yeah
and that’s kind of what I’m working with I do have plenty of stuff on my well I
shouldn’t say plenty I have a couple things on my wish list right now with
this is being recorded on is a Canon and we’ll kind of flip over to this camera so
what you can see what Linda’s got is this is our Canon t3i so it’s kind of an older
camera older DSLR and we’re just using a standard lens that came with so it’s
nothing super fancy or anything like that it gets the job done but I do want
to upgrade that and get a slightly better camera and that’s something I
might be doing soon but other than that that’s pretty much it so that’s my stuff
and yeah hopefully maybe this gives you some ideas I always get a lot of ideas
when I see videos like this and see see what tools other people are using to get
their job done so hopefully this helps and yeah and if you have any suggestions
I’m all ears I always of hearing what other people are using
to get things done so anyway thanks for watching

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