This year I haven’t blogged as much as I wanted to. It wasn’t for lack of inspiration though, far from it in fact. The root cause was simply that my laptop was so incredibly slow and unreliable. I’d boot up my laptop ready to write a cracking post only to feel all my motivation drain away as I stared at a loading screen for 10 minutes. I was spending a silly amount of time dealing with frozen screens or having to redo lost work because my computer crashed halfway through saving. Anyone who’s experienced that knows how soul destroying it can be!
Added to this, I had begun to dread all the fiddly and time consuming admin tasks that go into the making of a good, informative post. Taking pictures and writing the main copy is the fun bit that I enjoy but I’m really not such a fan of continually clicking between tabs to copy and paste links and fact check information, it all felt like a proper chore.
Over the past few months though I’ve made some really simple, cost effective tech upgrades to help improve the situation and make things easier. I’m very happy to say that it’s worked and I’m getting back into the swing of things now and feeling much more motivated.
Here’s what I did and how you can do it to!
Although I’d love to replace my laptop with an all signing all dancing Apple iMac or MacBook Pro they come with a far too hefty price tag. I opted for a far simpler and more cost effective solution; I replaced my laptop hard drive with an SSD (solid state drive) for £138. I got this one which my lovely boyfriend (who is far more knowledgeable on computer hardware than I am) recommended for me.
I won’t try and pretend that I know the technical details which explain why an SSD card boosts performance and is better than the standard one you get in your laptop (to be honest for all I know there are little elves sitting atop unicorns casting spells in there). I’ll just tell you instead that it’s well worth the investment and will make your laptop seem brand new again.
Mine boots up in 10 seconds flat now, I don’t get any horrible laggy freezes anymore and even heavy duty apps like Photoshop run with ease.
Basically when I tell my laptop to do something it just does it now without any delays or grumbles and that’s all I’ve ever wanted!
The swop was really straighforward, a bit like changing a sim card on your phone, so there’s not much technical know-how needed. Just remember that if you are going to change your hard drive then you’ll lose everything from the old one, so make sure you back everything up first and have a way to remember your passwords as you’ll need to set everything up again. Here’s a helpful guide I found which tells you everything you need to do step by step.
If you’re unfamiliar with dual screen set ups, it basically means that you have an extra monitor running from your computer (be that a desktop or laptop) so you can display and use more than one internet page/programme at a time.
This is handy if you’re in the middle of writing something and want to refer to reading materials or insert links into the post. Instead of having to toggle between tabs all the time you can just have the web page/email open on one monitor and your draft blog post open on the other screen. Another way I use it is to have all my photos open in a folder on one monitor so that as I’m writing my post I can refer to them and then drag and drop them in, again without having to continually click back and forth on on screen.
It’s not all that practical using a mouse when you’re using your laptop on the sofa but now that I’ve sorted out a proper office space with a desk I felt it was about time I got one. I opted for a USB plug in mouse over a wireless one because I don’t want to have to change batteries all the time and don’t mind the extra cable.
It’s such a small change, but I just find it so much easier to scroll through things and navigate with a proper mouse, plus I don’t get that weird numb finger feeling that comes with using a touchpad for too long anymore!
It’s very distracting when you don’t feel comfortable and so if you’re going to spend a long time at a screen it makes sense to get a good supportive chair.
On a recent trip to Ikea I found an affordable, super comfy chair that was perfect for my desk space. It’s a funky acrylic design in a curved shape which I have finished off with a faux sheepskin from Ikea. Although it’s supposed to be a rug I’ve used it as a throw and it means that everytime I sit down I feel like I’m getting a big furry hug – a huge improvement on the fold out wooden low back chair I was using before!
(I know I’m stretching it a bit by calling ‘buying a chair’ a tech upgrade, but to be fair to me it was flat packed and came with instructions so that’s technical enough for my liking!)
I hope that some of you find this post on my recent tech upgrades helpful – if you’d like to see more about blogging on LovedByLaura let me know what sort of topics you’d like me to cover in the comments!
(Please note that this post isn’t sponsored, it’s all just stuff I’ve purchased myself over the last few months!)
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