3 and a half years ago I sat down and wrote my first blog post. I am not going to pretend that I have been consistent and worked hard for all that time. I’ve had periods of months where I’ve given up on blogging, times when I would post 3/4 times a week and everything in between. I have learnt a lot in these years about blogging, and about myself. These are my top 5 things I’ve learnt.
- How to be myself online and what I actually enjoy writing about!
When I first started blogging, I wrote mainly about beauty because that was what everyone else wrote about. It didn’t matter that in reality I wear very little make up most days! I slowly started to work out what I am actually passionate about and I think my blogging journey really represents my personal journey. As I started getting into fitness, I started blogging about it. When I got diagnosed with IBS and had to eat low FODMAP, I blogged about it. When I’m really loving fashion and beauty, I blog about it and when I’m not, I don’t force it!
This goes against a lot of the blogging advice I used to read online. I was told that to be successful I had to stick with a certain topic and be consistent. I now know that it’s much more important to be true to myself and enjoy what I’m doing. That really shows through to what I produce.
- Taking outfit photos really isn’t that embarrassing!
I used to find it traumatising to pose in front of a camera in public! To the point that most of my blog photos were taken in my bedroom or back garden. I’ve slowly learnt that it really doesn’t matter what these people think of me and I will probably never see them again. In reality, I’m never going to be able to take a photo in London without people being around! #actconfidentandnoonewillquestionyou
- Logging off can be the best thing you do for your blog!
Okay so I have been very on and off with blogging over the last 3 years and I am not saying that is a good thing but sometimes you really do need a break. If I find myself really struggling creatively or to come up with ideas then I know taking a couple of weeks off will give me time to recharge and come back excited to get going again.
- Genuine growth takes a long time and a lot of work.
I never expected to get a huge audience and I really don’t mind because I’ve always done this for me. However it can be so easy to compare my statistics to other bloggers and people on social media. I might have written my first blog post 3.5 years ago but I really didn’t take it seriously and work hard until 6 months ago. I can’t then go and compare my Instagram followers to someone who’s been a full time blogger for 5 years!
My audience was never going to grow when I wasn’t putting in the work and only posted monthly. Now that I’m being more consistent and actively engaging on social media, my audience is growing slowly. I could buy fake followers and double it overnight but building an engaged and real audience takes time and I’m very happy with that.
- Taking a leap of faith and getting out of my comfort zone is a good thing!
6 months ago I made a big jump and moved my blog over to self-hosted WordPress and bought a theme. This might sound like nothing but this was scary to me. This was me saying ‘okay, I am going to take blogging seriously and I’m committed to putting consistent work in’.
No big breakthroughs are going to come from doing the same thing in the same place every day. I’ve stepped out of my comfort zone to talk about personal topics like my health, gain the confidence to pose in front of the camera and reach out to people on social media. Be brave.