Ten Years of Tips: What I've Learned Through Blogging
In the past few months, I’ve gotten a bunch of questions about blogging— more than I’ve ever gotten in my decade of online writing. Since I was 14, I’ve kept various online journals, each one a little more refined and well-designed than the one before. I’ve been through seasons of unspiration and seasons where my fingers can’t type the words out fast enough to get all my thoughts down. For a micro blogger, I feel incredibly thankful to connect friends from across the world with my little corner of the internet. One of my favorite things to share is my blogging journey, and one of my favorite things to do is help others to start their own. I’ve snagged a few of the questions I get asked the most and put them in one spot, and if you’re looking for a sign to start documenting your unique perspective on life with a blog— this is it.
Why did you start blogging?
I started blogging in high school BASICALLY because I was an angsty teenager just itching to have a corner of the internet where I could publish all my thoughts without updating my Facebook status. It was a my way of expressing creativity with words. As I got older, I used blogging as more of a way to connect with others online. I got messages responding to the posts, and it would make me feel really good to know that I was connecting with these people who got value from my viewpoint on life.
How do you stay inspired? Where do you draw your inspiration from?
I keep a notebook with me at all times. I’m constantly taking notes and jotting reminders about things I hear, see, and read. When I have a near-constant mind to take notes, not only do I look at the world a different way, which inspires me, but I have “old” inspiration to draw on in times of un-spiration. I also find myself to be the most inspired and effectual writer and creator when I remember to take time to let my mind rest. When I keep a morning routine consistently, it affects my entire creative life.
I want to start blogging, but I’m not sure exactly what I want it to be about— any tips?
TAKE NOTES ON YOUR LIFE. Your perspective and expertise on your life is so unique. Take two weeks and take a notebook with you (or keep notes app in your phone handy). Take note of anything that stands out to you— what do people ask of you? Are you the best encourager? Are you great at putting killer outfits together on a budget? Do you have an eye for photography/ flatlays? Are you an expert traveler on a budget? Do you always know the best coffee spots in town? The thing is, the market of blogging ALWAYS has room for your voice. You offer something special to the world, just find out the thing (or multiple things, if you’re like me) that you’re most passionate about. Ask your friends what they think you’re the best at; if they’re good friends, they’ll take the chance to gas you up AND be honest.
How do you balance a full time job & blogging? Scheduling is everything. I have times and days for everything that I do, and I try to make the most of every day. I live by creating deadlines for myself. Something else that I find really helpful is letting them overlap a little (remember the notebook from earlier?) I let my experiences at work influence my blog work. I use conversations with coworkers and clients to keep a pulse on what’s going on around me. You’ll catch me sharing a lot of links that the girls at my office and I pass back and forth.
How do you find support?
The great thing about the world now is that creators are EVERYWHERE. I will literally search my location and reach out to people on social media who seem to have similar interests. We can never have too many friends, especially if you can support each other. It’s a lot more encouraging to connect with others during the creation process— after all, it is SOCIAL media, right? The whole game is about expanding a network and building with others. Creating lasting relationships makes this whole thing worth while.
Those are my fast quick answers to some of the most common questions. If you’re trying to start, grab a Wordpress account or open a Word document and just start typing. Even if you don’t publish anything yet. They key to creating is to START CREATING. You have value to add to the platforms. You have perspective to offer others. Your voice matters.