“I think I’m going to start a blog…!!”
I said this about 20 times for 2 years before I actually lit the spark and created mine. When I look back at my first three months of blogging, my general thought was “what was I thinking???” I didn’t really have a clue what I was doing at that point and I still dont really know what I am doing and that’s ok. Writing has always been a great outlet for me, but blogging has given me a new kind of energy and enjoyment.
I want to thank everyone who has commented, shared, liked, or followed my blog. I am BEYOND flattered and so grateful that you find my blog worthwhile. It’s such an amazing feeling to know that I am connecting with other people.
I think it would have been really helpful to read a post with a few tips and hints to push me in the right direction. So that’s what I’ve decided to do today with my “5 Things I’ve Learned About Blogging.” Of course, I think it’s important not to regret anything because everything I’ve done in the last 8 months has been a learning process and nothing is ever pointless. But if you’re thinking of starting a blog or still not sure what you’re doing is right (hell I’m still not sure!), here are my tips to take into consideration:
1. Relationships are everything
We rely on each other for advice, resources and encouragement. Blogging has actually introduced me to awesome people so far. Some of my followers became my friends, and many other bloggers that I have met along the way are my constant and best support. It is the truth that much of this kind of friendship happens online, but it doesn’t take its value away. And, yes, sometimes, we meet in real life, for a chat, or even work together in co-working spaces. We share our dreams and expectations, and life sounds much better after that. We all realize the more we pay it forward, the more it comes back. I never anticipated my blog would connect me with people who share my passion, interests and drive. Talk to other humans because again, that’s what this whole thing is all about. The network of people that you build will carry your blog. They can provide opportunities, feedback, + support. Yes, you should spend hours making your blog look amazing + writing quality posts. Just make sure you also make time to build friendships because, when your tired of blogging, your readers/friends will be what keeps you going, not your pretty headers + text fonts.
2. We are worth more than a 9-to-5
If I don’t have enough on my plate being a mom, working full time, being a dance teacher and a wife, how in the world do I have time to blog? What we really need is a work/hustle/life balance. A blog is a perfect side hustle and will make you feel productive every day. Plus, your blog could ‘wow’ an employer and help you move on to a better situation. I really do like my full time job (commercial administrator), but my true passion is fashion, beauty and fitness. A few people have asked me how I manage to blog, work full time, be a mommy and live life…. Because I get a lot of pleasure from writing, it doesn’t feel like I am adding anything to my workload. What I am writing about is interesting (to me) so I have yet to feel burdened by blogging. Also, it’s just a hobby for me so there is zero pressure. When writing starts to interfere with my priorities or be anything but gratifying then I will reevaluate things. But, I’m not there. Not even close
3. Don’t worry about how many likes, comments and followers you have
So I know this one sounds very much like a cliche, but I used to be very focused on wanting to grow my blog and make it bigger and better. Of course, I still want to do this because I think it’s great to have an aim and work towards something, but I’m much more focused now on writing about what I enjoy and feeling more relaxed about the whole thing. At the end of the day, if you keep writing posts you’re proud of and had fun creating, all those other things will probably follow. Yes, blogging is a ton of work and can be frustrating, but when you are finally seeing people enjoy your content and commenting on your content and coming back for more posts, it’s really rewarding! Hard work pays off in the long-term and not always in that exact moment!
4. There will always be someone else’s blog which is bigger and better than yours
It seems like everybody has a blog these days. Because of that, you could so easily get lost in the crowd. In the beginning, I thought that there were certain things I had to talk about to fit in and certain posts I needed to do to get traffic. I was fooling myself because some of those things were not even how I wanted my blog to be represented. I’ve actually removed a lot of posts that don’t really fit in with the overall theme of my blog anymore. Try not to compare yourself to other people (this is true in all walks of life!) if you see someone else’s photography or Instagram that looks amazing, don’t feel bad about yours, take inspiration from it. On the other hand, don’t try and copy others so you lose what’s individual to your own blog. Every successful blog out there probably started off small and amateur so just keep persevering!
5. Do it sooner!!
You want to know what my biggest regret is? Not starting a blog sooner. I’d been thinking about it for a long time but maybe was just too nervous to actually put myself out there on the internet, which can be a very scary thing. Now, I really wish I could have written it 10 years ago when I was living in Cincinnati, had a lot more spare time and was travelling to lots of exciting new places. My biggest advice would be not to be scared, and if you feel like you want to write a blog, do it!! What’s the worst that could happen?
I can’t wait to see how this blog changes and grows 6 months from now. Thank you for taking your own time to read my thoughts. It means the world to me to share with others and I hope that you will stay here and grow and change as this blog grows and changes. Here’s to 6 more months of learning, growing, and enjoying being a blogger!
What have you learned from blogging? What is your favorite thing about being a blogger?