I am going to start a blog. What?! A blog? Where in the world did that come from? I think that is what many people were thinking when I said I was going to start a blog. Perhaps it seemed random or a bit “out there”, but to me, it was a step I was finally taking…a step I had been wanting to take for a couple of years and never had the courage. It isn’t an easy thing to put yourself out there for the world to watch and critique. It isn’t easy to think, “What if I fail?” But in my heart, I knew this was something I had to do. I just “knew”. I knew it was time to finally focus in on what I have known all along, I love to write. I love to share. What better way to do those things than start a blog? Did I worry that people would not like me and that I may not get a single page view? Of course. Did I worry that my shoulder’s weren’t big enough to carry the discouragement that I knew would come from people that had the best of intentions but just truly didn’t even understand what a blog was or what I was even trying to do? Of course. But did I worry that I was heading in a direction that I was not 100% sure I should be taking? No. I didn’t worry about that. I knew.
Today I just want to take a few moments to reflect on this journey so far. I want to reflect on my VERY FIRST MONTH! (Disclaimer~This post could get lengthy!)
They say time flies when you are having fun (and I have to admit-I AM)! This month has been a whirlwind! Let me first say that I am having a blast exploring my creative side and sharing it with you, and there are so many things that I have learned in this first month.
1.) This gig take a lot of time!
~Planning posts, Remembering to take pictures along the way during a project, Going back and staging pictures that you forgot to take during a project, Editing pictures, writing posts, coming up with creative content, linking up at link parties, exploring other blogs, commenting on other blogs, submitting your work to other sites, posting to social media, responding to comments, etc… Whew! I think I never TRULY knew how much time was involved with blogging!
2.) Be prepared for the critique!
~While I have been super blessed with supportive people in my life, as well as awesome feedback from sooo many people that have come across my work- there are always those “sandpaper” people that simply rub you the wrong way. You can tell by their demeanor that they don’t “get it” or care to get it, and they think what you are doing is silly and a fun little past time. Well, I have learned to simply ignore that and move forward with confidence. I have not always had thick skin (just ask my poor mama who thought I would never toughen up). In fact, I still don’t have super thick skin, but it has gotten MUCH thicker! It isn’t easy to have people tell you that they liked your before picture better than your after or countless other things that people say, but you can’t please everyone…and hey, what is the fun in that anyway?!
3.) Blogging is not a competition!
~I am not sure that I can truly say I “learned” this, but it has definitely become more and more real to me in the past month. Many bloggers truly want others to succeed. They share other blogger’s posts on social media, comment on their work, help promote them, and just genuinely have relationships with each other. While I am totally new, I can already see a sense of family within this field…and I love that. My neighbor/friend is a blogger (and an awesome one at that), and she has been my BIGGEST supporter. She has answered countless questions and encouraged me more than words can even express. Without her, I am not sure if I would have ever truly taken the step to even START this journey. Her name is Katie, and her blog is Fun Home Things. She does an amazing job, and I know you would love her site! She is not only an amazing blogger, but an amazing friend.
4.) There is so much to learn!
~I don’t even think I have enough words in my vocabulary to describe how much there is to learn about blogging. Before I even launched my site, hours upon hours were spent reading and searching and learning about what in the heck to do. I had no clue. Seriously, no clue. I knew how to write and what I wanted to do, but I had no idea how to get there. I didn’t know anything about starting a website and implementing social media and widgets (what the heck was a widget?!?). I had no idea about html code and analytics. I had no idea how to do anything. The list could really go on and on. The key here is that even though I had no idea, I didn’t give up. I kept learning. I kept reading. I kept searching. Finally, it all started coming together, and in the end…I had a site that I was pretty proud of. I was ready to launch it, at least. (I am constantly tweaking it, but I think that is just going to be a forever thing!) I am so proud of how far I came and how much I have learned. It has not been easy, but it has been worth it. I make myself learn something new every single day, and trust me, that is not a hard thing to do. There are tons of things to learn, so focusing on just 1 is the hard part! By doing this, I am bettering myself each and every day.
5.) Blogging is not a sprint, it is a marathon!
~I remind myself of this every single day. This is not something that most people find instant success with. It takes time. It takes time to get visitors. It takes time to gain page views. It takes time to truly be known. Only a very small fraction of people even know you exist! It takes time to change that. Little things that you do each day is what will make the difference. Even though I have only been doing this for a month, I have seen that. I have seen how much of a difference those “little” things make. Do something each and every day to get your blog out there just a little more. Each new person to find you is one step closer to your goals. Each person matters. Keep on keeping on! (I am preaching to myself)
Some SUPER exciting things have happened this month!
Grant it, I am probably much more excited than you will be, but hey! This month, I have had some of those “shaking so bad that you can’t even put your make-up on” moments. You know, the kind where every time you try to pick up your mascara, you keep knocking it over (yes that really happened)?!
During this first month, I was blessed to be featured 3 times on Hometalk and on Good Housekeeping! I honestly cannot even believe that any of that has happened to me so soon, but I am telling you…if you work hard and believe in yourself, anything can happen. The Lord has been so good to me, and I have to give Him all the credit.
Listed below are my top 3 posts for this month:
Dining Room Reveal Vintage Tea Cart Living Room Reveal
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Linking up at: