After blogging for five years, I can tell you not every day is creatively fueled or inspiring. There are many-a-day that I have no idea what to write about or I don't feel like taking photos. It's hard to come up with original content consistently. Still, after all this time, I never once thought about quitting a hobby that I love so much.
I've heard this before however in the last week, I've had two girlfriends ask me how I do it all? By "all" they are referring to two full-time jobs, being a mother, a somewhat decent wife and blogging.
Truthfully, I don't do it all. Not even close. There are weeks where my kids eat chicken nuggets two days in a row. There are weeks when my laundry sits in a heap for five solid days. There are weeks when I cannot squeeze in a single work out. And it's pretty consistent that I am on the couch next to my husband with a computer on my lap. It's not ideal but luckily, he is incredibly supportive.
Back to blogging. I just can't quit you! You people are addicting.
That said, here are some of my tips to starting and continuing a blog for the long haul:
- Don't quit. It's usually when you are about to quit something that you break through and find success.
- Be consistent. If you can only post twice a week - post twice a week but don't deviate. Your readers want to know what to expect from you and it will give them a reason to come back time and time again.
- Be your authentic self. There's no one else like you. While blogs tend to portray the happier side of life, at least choose to portray the aspects of your life that bring you joy and truly interest you.
- Create a blog concept that is diverse. If you're a Gemini or anything like me at all, there's no way you'll choose to write about a singular topic five days a week. In fact, I chose the name "101 things i love" so that I wasn't pigeon holed against one topic for eternity. To this day I've never regretted it. (also ideal for creative ruts. see below)
- Squash your creative block. Get outside, go for a walk, have coffee with a friend, network or attend an event. Break your daily cycle and get inspired by the universe. When in doubt, take a break - don't forget to live life.
- Blogging should not be a burden. The minute it does, check yourself and bow out gracefully if your passion has waned. There's nothing worse than a blog with no heart.
- A Sunday well spent brings a week of content. Take a day off. See #5.
- Educate yourself. Attend seminars, webinars, ask your friends questions...basically, be a sponge. There are many options out there for bloggers and it can be overwhelming.
- Do not neglect social media. Social media has changed the landscape of my blog and my traffic. Do not treat all channels equally either. There is a unique objective and audience on every single platform. Just when you think you've got it down...a new channel is born. And yes, it's exhausting.
- Use original photography. When I first began, I used Pinterest and various Tumblr's to credit images. Once I started using my own photography my traffic soared. It was a learning for me - people want to know you and your real life routines vs a picture of some model with no relatability. Build a sense of trust, familiarity and camaraderie with your readers.
Enjoy the ride. It's worth it.
And remember, I don't do it all. I keep my head above water. xo