Today I want to talk a little about the biggest lesson I’ve learned in blogging and how it’s been affecting me lately. When it comes to blogging, or probably anything else you do for that matter, consistency is important. It’s been somewhat of an underlying theme here lately. Want to get more out of Twitter? Be consistent. Want to grow your readership? Be consistent.
When I first started blogging, I had no idea what I wanted to do with it. And some days, I still don’t know! But the turning point for me in blogging, which took me more than a year to figure out by the way, was when I started posting consistently — both in frequency and topics. Up until that point, I would skip weeks of posting, and my thoughts were scattered. When I finally sat down and created an editorial calendar, posting on a regular schedule, I was able to define my style, find my voice, and quickly figure out whether or not I enjoyed posting about certain topics. I’m not saying you should post five days a week, or pick a few topics and only stick to those. I’m just saying it’s helpful to make time to experiment and find what works for you, and unless you schedule it in, it’s not going to happen.
This is an important topic to me because I used to be such a perfectionist. I still am to a certain extent, but blogging really taught me that the process is just as important as the end result, if not more so, and you aren’t going to get anywhere if you wait until you can make things absolutely perfect. There’s something to be said for proper planning, and you have to determine at what point you’re holding yourself back because of perfecting something versus making sure you’re putting your best work out there. But if you’ve been sitting on an idea for a while, sometimes you just have to get something out there for it to grow — in fact, sometimes by getting an idea out there, it grows into something better than you imagined to begin with!
I’m bringing up this topic today not only because it ties in with some of the other things we’ve discussed lately, but also because I’ve been struggling lately with the balance between consistency and maintaining sanity. I skipped some blogging last week, because at some point you do have to accept that something isn’t going to get done, and that something might be blogging. And I do think it’s important to recognize when you need a break. But at the same time, once you take a break, sometimes it’s that much harder to keep going!
Maybe it’s because I work from home, but as much as I enjoy blogging, some days it feels like too much extra work. I think I’m going to experiment with posting more frequently again, because I used to really enjoy starting my day with blogging so I was always doing at least one thing creative for myself each day, and it’s actually harder to do that when you’re only posting a few days a week. I still may not post every day, but my goal is to work at least a little on a blog post each day, even if it doesn’t get published that day. We’ll see what happens, I just miss that daily creativity. Thanks for bearing with my little experimenting, and I hope it encourages you to do some experimenting of your own!
How do you balance consistency and maintaining your sanity? What has been your biggest lesson in blogging?