Somewhere in or around April 2010 is when I began blogging. I’ve been cleaning house on my old posts. Right now the oldest blog post in my archive is this one. Some of my old posts are downright embarrassing today. My blogging voice, direction and purpose have all changed since then. So please accept my apologies, when or if, you stumble across one of those horrid uncleaned posts.
I wasn’t sure what I would write about today as I celebrate: 4 years, 500+ posts, 3,800+ comments. The answer came to me this morning as I reflected on my blogging journey, especially all the changes going on with this platform.
There have been many times that I considered discontinuing my blog, and times when I posted infrequently because I wasn’t inspired to say anything, but every time I’ve come back. And I’ll keep coming back as long as that itch is still there.
Whether you are a new reader or a long-time reader, again thank you for your interest in what I have to say, thank for your conversation and thank you for your support. Without further adieu…
What I’ve Learned from Blogging
1) Blogging is a lot of work. If you want to start a blog to make money, please just don’t. You have to really want to do this. You have to be passionate about blogging first. Then, you might make money, but you might not.
2) You will question yourself daily when you blog. You have to be your own writer, editor, content curator, marketer, photographer and more – all in one. The questions can stall your creativity, but you have to press on and publish. You will probably make mistakes, publish typos and the like – you are human and you have to be OK with being imperfect.
3) Not everyone will like or read your blog. You will receive nasty comments. You will also receive the ones you read five times over, then send to a friend for her opinion, and finally decide the comment is a constructive criticism. You will also read and comment on your favorite blogs for months or years, thinking that person has the same interests and would read your blog too – instead you never receive a comment in return.
4) Blogging teaches you a lot. It teaches you to write daily. It teaches you the tech side of running a website and it teaches you a lot about social media. For those reasons alone I continue blogging. There is so much I never would have learned had I not started this blog.
5) People say they blog for their readers. They are lying. I blog for myself and for my readers. Question anyone who says the former.
6) Be more open with your blog. For about four months my blog was 100% anonymous. Then I told close friends and family. About a year or two into it I posted my blog on Facebook. Today I blog under my own name. It helps me tremendously with accountability and helps build my own personal brand. You are putting in an inordinate amount of time and effort into your blog – share it with others. It’s not as scary as it sounds.
7) Blogging comes with great community. From in-person to online, I’ve tested out different blogging groups. For the most part bloggers are normal, real people. Yes!
8) Don’t take yourself so seriously. This goes a bit back to #2. But I really mean it. I struggle with this still today. Yes, the internet lives forever. But the joy of a blog is you can go in and edit that typo or apologize in a comment for what was confusing in your post. The world will not end. So please, go forth and write.