What I've Learned From 1 Year of Blogging

 

I just celebrated one year of this adventure called blogging. Since I found the courage to push “publish” twelve months ago, I’ve written 37 posts. At an average of 750 words per post, that’s 27,750 words.

During this year, I’ve learned a ton about blogging:

  • There’s a whole world of writers and creatives out there I previously didn’t know about.
  • Consistency is way harder than I ever imagined.
  • There are days creativity flows easily, and other days I can’t put two words together.

I’m grateful I didn’t quit on the days I really wanted to. I might not have hit my stretch goal of posting weekly, but I’ve averaged 3 posts a month. Not too shabby for year 1. As I recently sat down to reflect on the year - with great fondness and gluten-free cupcakes - I identified 5 practical ways blogging has benefitted me:

  1. Blogging has improved my writing and clarified my thinking. One of the primary reasons I started this whole thing was to practice writing and to determine what I enjoy writing about. I just didn’t feel ready to jump straight into a book without some front-end practice. Writing has become therapeutic for me, and it untangles my thoughts. I enjoy it *almost* as much as speaking.
  2. Blogging has created connection. I made peace with the the possibility of no one reading the blog long before I started, so connecting with so many people behind the scenes has been the best surprise. People have taken me up on the offer to connect through comments and private messages. They’ve invited me into their stories and lives through sharing thoughts and experiences.
  3. Blogging has resulted in a stockpile of content. The content developed here has found it’s way into sermons, breakout sessions, workshops, and Bible studies. Even the content I’ve written but never published in a post has proven so valuable. 
  4. Blogging has opened new opportunities. Whether contributing posts to other sites, new speaking opportunities, or new friends, blogging has opened doors to all kinds of unexpected opportunities. 
  5. Blogging has provided a way to share resources and ideas. I’m a teacher at heart. I love sharing resources and tips to help others. Blogging has provided a great platform for that - from favorite books to ways to guard sanity through margin and rest. When I find something helpful or inspiring, I want to pass it along. 

The Biggest Takeaway of All:

I’m honestly not great at keeping commitments. I’m a bit of a quitter. It’s hard to say it, but it’s true. I’m good on the big commitments, like marriage, but the small ones, like diet and exercise, really trip me up. I usually start strong and fizzle out over time, but here we are. It’s 12 months later, and I’m still hammering out words to share. I feel an unexpected sense of accomplishment. Not because the writing is great (because some of it is pretty rough), but because I kept at it. I didn't quit.

Words from my very first post ring true: done is better than perfect. This only happened because I stopped waiting for the perfect time, the perfect opportunity, and the perfect words. 

Where are you waiting for perfect? What dream or idea is sitting on hold? What have you been waiting to start? Today’s Monday. Mondays are great for starting. If you do, you just never know where you’ll land 12 months down the road. Just maybe you’ll be celebrating with fondness and cupcakes too…and if so…invite me!

I want to hear your thoughts - please comment below! What are you starting?