7 Things I Learned My First Year of Blogging

lessons I learned my first year of blogging

7 Things I Learned My First Year of Blogging

In May 2016, on a whim I launched My Blissful Adventure – full of excitement, dreams and delusions! My plan was less than stellar (and not 7 lessons I learned my first year of bloggingso much a plan at all). I was going to write, about everything. I was going to explore new places and try new things. It was all going to fall into place. I tell myself that lie so much, I actually believe it sometimes. I know that’s not how things worked, but my passion was going to drive me, and that was all I needed. (Note: that’s a new lie.) 
 
I had day dreams of sitting at my desk writing about everything imaginable. I pictured myself traveling the world, just my notebook and I set out for greatness. I’m not gonna say that ones a complete lie, but I did discard a few realities in that day dream. Family, my job, my dog even! Delusions! Attention! Attention! Earth to Tori, you’re still in reality! Come back Tori! Yeah…
 
I quickly fizzled out. I was pushing to crank out a new blog post, I felt overwhelmed with everything it took to blog. (You mean, it’s more than some writing and hitting post?) I knew there was more, but I didn’t fully acknowledge it. I put in work one day and skipped a week and went back for a few days and posted something, shared something, disappeared… it was quite the magicians act, if you ask me, which nobody has.
 
In March I decided to start fresh – new blog, new direction, an actual plan! 
Let’s go back, let me tell you why I didn’t think I needed a plan: because this wasn’t a business. I wasn’t growing my hopes of a future empire. I just wanted to connect with other people who share similar interests, I wanted to inspire someone. I wanted to, do more. Do something. So anyway, it wasn’t a business, and if you’re reading this, thinking “I’m not trying to start a business, I just want to blog semi-successfully”, you still need a plan. 
 
So I got a plan, I got a new blog, I opted for self-hosted so I had more options. I was cruising… here are a few things I learned along the way of dreams to reality to hard work and back to dreams.
 

You Need a Plan.

 

Surprise, bet ya didn’t see that coming? You do need a plan, whether you’re in this for a hobby like me, or your planning to make this a career. You need some type of plan. What are you going to blog about? What’s your schedule going to be? When will you find time to write, take/find images, etc. How are you going to juggle daily life with your blog life? These are all questions you need to ask yourself and answer before you begin. 

What Tools Will You Use?

Hosting? Theme? Social media? Tech equipment? Plugins? Will you need a camera? Computer? Photo editor? How will you gather ideas? Where will you collect your information? Some of these are more immediately important than others, but they’re all pretty crucial to your blog.

An Editorial Calendar Will Save You.

I don’t know what I’m doing one minute to the next, so I keep my handy dandy planner with me all the time. But in my ignorance I thought, “I’m going to blog as life comes at me, it’s lifestyle not planned style.” lol. Hold on, L.O.L. Yeaaahh… slowly I came to accept the editorial calendar is needed. I started adding it to my google calendar, only to realize I don’t use my digital calendar for literally anything else, so it’s not going to work for this. I added a page into my monthly planner just for blogging. (Check out Bullet Journal for Bloggers). This has actually been a life saver. I’m not saying I’m sticking to it entirely, but if I’m not posting what I wrote, I better find something to post in the same slot! 

It Starts Pretty Slow.

I felt pretty inadequate when I was getting less than 10 views a day on the days I didn’t do anything. I saw everyone saying “I’m only getting a thousand views a day” and I’m over here like, I’ve been at this for a month and am just hitting that as my lifetime! Most blogs don’t hit the big times immediately, if yours does, that is awesome! However, if it doesn’t, it doesn’t mean you’re a blogging failure. 

Be Social.

I was so intimidated joining groups and posting my work. But, if you want views you have to be viewed. Blogging is often personal, you’re writing from you. I can share with you all the essays and papers I wrote in school, I don’t care if you like my paper on JFK. But I do care if I look like an idiot when you read something more personal. You have to share, and you have to reciprocate. Don’t just post your link and go. Nobody likes it. I made a little rule for myself – for every link I leave, I look at at least 5 others and try to share/comment/etc. their posts as well. Give 80, get 20. I know that came from somewhere.

Be Yourself.

I think one of the most uncomfortable things about blogging is you’re putting yourself out into the entire world. You’re using your face as something, and for me sometimes it almost felt fake. Like, I’m not feeling this today, even though I may have felt good about it while writing it once I’m posting, I’m questioning who I really am. Blogging has taught me a lot about myself and even changed me in some ways. It’s like some weird mind experiment… but the best person you can be is yourself. You want to be authentic, I want you to be authentic. 

Don’t Give Up.

If it was easy, everyone would do it. Add in another 15 motivational quotes to get you going and inspired. Now go blog about it!

1 Comment

  1. Congrats on your year of blogging! 🙂 This was a really informative post too, thanks for sharing 🙂

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