A lot can happen in three years!
For one, Barak Obama was still president!!!
In April of 2016, we would be able to not only sip on but lyrically drink in all that Beyonce’ had to give us in her phenomenon that was Lemonade. Not to mention, our guy Leo finally got what was duly his for not only surviving a grizzly bear attack in The Revenant, but for refusing to give up after being shut out time and time again from the elusive Oscar for Best Actor door.
I know that’s all pop culture-y stuff and if you want to see what else happened in Hollywood and pop culture at large in 2016, feel free to check out this random article I Googled. But even in my own life, three years feels like ages ago. Heck, for one, I was still only up to a three child, kid count!
You know what else? This time three years ago, I was on the cusp of a VERY new and scary venture!
Cue creepy horror movie music or whatever other weird version of “Duh, Duh, Duuuuuuuh!” you hear in your head!
But, I think I’ve made out alright. That’s why, as we enter this final day of March, which marks the 3rd anniversary of the month I started this blog, I’m counting down the top 3 things I’ve learned!
#3 Its not how you start and it kinda isn’t even about how you finish…its about what happens in between!
I know that’s kinda long-winded and weirdly worded, but go with me here…
I wish I could say I was fully gung-ho, fully committed or even fully prepared when I finally announced to my husband one March day in 2016 that I was starting a blog.
Nope, not even close!
In fact, I was still some what averse to the whole idea of bogging people’s emails down with weekly updates about how I decided to no longer use my microwave for any sort of warming up leftovers in lieu of my oven (yes this was a REAL blog I once read!). I refuse to blog about why I was going to start giving my kids the Flintstone Kids vitamins instead of the whole food, plant based ones that are also non-GMO, without any additives, preservatives, gluten or laxatives…okay, I kinda made that “laxatives” part up! 😉 But you get my gist.
My point is, I hate to be a bother and worse than that, I refuse to be a hypocrite. I don’t like to get junk in my inboxes so why would I now become apart of the “junk giving weekly to bi-weekly machine”?! I simply could not wrap my mind around that.
Even still, I knew I needed to put into blog form all that was swirling around in my heart and head when it came to homeschooling and pursuing becoming a published children’s book author. So the most logical step on that journey was beginning a blog.
I. HAD. TO. TAKE. THE PLUNGE!!!
I had no clue what I was doing. And quite honestly, if any of you could’ve seen me at 2AM yesterday morning as I spent hours starting and stopping this YouTube tutorial on How to Make a WordPress Blog for Beginners, you might still feel the same!
Despite my untechsavvyness (is that even a word??) I’ve made it work. I’ve Google searched and YouTubed my way to this point! But if you don’t hear anything else I’ve got to say this blog, heed the words of an 87 year old Michaelangelo, “Ancora imparo”.
I’m still learning.
But I say, “Don’t snuff at the small stuff kid!” Take this shiny new blog template for example (I think that’s the correct term…or maybe its “Theme” or whatever…well, you know what I mean!). After months of wasting my upgrade from the “free WordPress” site to the next tier in their plan offerings, I was able to finally figure out how to get this bad boy to look quite snazzy! Don’t you think?!
So, I say celebrate the big, small or whatever size victories in between you achieve along the way! Don’t get hung up on what you do or don’t have yet. Rather, focus on what you can do well right now!
#2 Be your best YOU!
Man, before that final “u” made it to my screen, I knew this one would be the corniest of my Top 3, but I’m just gonna go with it! Because you know what, that’s just a part of what makes me, me. I’ve embraced what some might call my inner corny. I like to say its my alluring charm! Either way, I’ve learned and still am learning that that is what readers enjoy and are drawn to. We live in a world in which *spoiler alert* House Hunters is staged and American Idol is still on the air. Just peeking at one episode last week, it was ripe with the most unbelievable
plants auditioners the most creative casting director could whip up!
In the fog of all this fake, as a blogger, YOU must emerge!
And not the done up, “I woke up like ‘dis” you either!
Sure, take your online courses to become better at branding. I’m not even saying don’t come correct with a blog strategy to build your audience.
What I am saying is, when your fingers hit those keys, don’t for one minute think people will want to hear a pre-packaged, watered-down, out of touch with reality, version of you. Let your personality, your flaws, your quirks and mishaps but most importantly the MOST honest version of yourself shine through!
Trust me, people WILL read it!
#1 A little investment goes a lonnng way!
You may have aspirations to have hundreds or even thousands of followers or subscribers. For some, that would be nice. For others, you may be content with a handful over here, and a trickle over there of occasional readers. Both are totally fine depending on your personal blogging goals!
But I will say this, these three years have taught me that in whichever category I eventually find myself, I must invest! And I’m not only talking about the “Dolla Dolla Bills Y’all” kind of investment either.
I’ve had to invest the time to figure out what is actually worthwhile to say to my readers. I must often ask myself, “If I were you [the reader], would I want to read this post?” Am I simply pumping out post after post for the sake of meeting my bi-weekly quota of my self-imposed subscriber parameters? Or, am I investing in producing quality blog content, that adds to the blogosphere at large for the better?
However, a discussion of investment cannot get around the (very necessary at times) monetary investment.
It may take some forgoing of your daily Starbucks run to save up and splurge a bit on the paid plan your blogging goals require. It took me 2 1/2 years to finally plunk down the necessary cash to obtain my domain name and upgrade this here blog to WordPress’ premium offerings.
All that to say, we each are on our own blogging journey. You may find it around every corner, but at Able to Teach, you find no judgment here friend!
Instead, you’ll find the encouragement to keep going, keep trying, keep pushing, keep planning, keep writing, and keep plugging away at doing what you love most!
Cheers to a Happy 3rd Blogiversary to me and many more to you too!
Thanks for reading!