On Wednesday I published my 1,000th blog post and it’s got me feeling reflective and nostalgic. I wrote my very first blog post on January 3, 2010. You can read it here. It was actually on blogspot back then and I named it, on a whim, “Our Daily Bread.”
I clearly didn’t have much of a plan when I started. That first post doesn’t even have a picture! The very first picture I published? I can’t bring myself to put it here, but you can see it here. OMG.
Back then, I never imagined that blogging would become my full-time job or how Happy Healthy Mama would evolve. Meghan was 15 months old (she’s 9 now!) when I started blogging and there was no Luke yet. I have lived my 30s on this blog and I am grateful I have it as a document of our life and healthy living journey.
Thanks for reading and coming along on this journey with our family. Without you, there would be no Happy Healthy Mama, so thanks for reading and sticking around through the years. I fully intend to have another 1,000 posts as long as the Internet is still here and you keep reading. Here’s the future!
For now, I’d like to share some reflections of what I’ve learned after publishing 1,000 blog posts.
10 Things I’ve Learned After Publishing 1,000 Blog Posts
1. You Can’t Compare Someone Else’s Journey with Your Own.
It’s so easy to fall into the comparison trap online. It’s true whether you’re just on Facebook for personal use or you’re a blogger. There has been so many times I’ve looked at other bloggers and wondered why I’m not growing as fast or why I don’t have as many followers or why my photographs aren’t as good. I have to force myself to STOP and focus on my own journey. It’s a struggle, but something I’ve tried to contain.
2. There is always room for improvement.
This is true in blogging and life. My parents always taught me that if you aren’t constantly improving you might as well not be living. To fully live out your purpose, you should always strive to improve. This is so true in the blogging world. You can’t get too comfortable or you’ll get left behind.
3. Consistency is important.
This isn’t as important if you’re blogging for a hobby. But if you’re blogging for your job, you’ve got to be consistent. I’m still not perfectly consistent, but I’ve made it a priority to be more so in the last two years and it’s made a huge difference in my readership, subscribers, and income.
4. Sticktoitiveness is THE most important trait that will take you far in the blogging world.
No question. You can have all the skills in the world, but it means nothing without grit and the ability to stick to it, especially when things get tough. Which they do. Often. There were a lot of years where this blog didn’t make any money, it seemed like I was grasping to get anyone beyond my family and close friends to read, and I felt like I’d never learn to take a decent photo. I just kept going.
5. You must be willing to grow and change.
Nothing changes faster than the online world. Google changes their algorithm. Video becomes king on Facebook. Readers want this, Pinterest wants that. You have to be open and willing to adapt, be flexible, and pivot when you need to.
6. You will never please everyone.
I gave up trying a while ago. I’ve found this to be especially in this healthy living space where everyone has their own definition of healthy and what’s acceptable. It’s okay if everyone doesn’t agree with everything you do or say.
7. You have to have a thick skin.
There was a time when a negative comment would stay with me for days. I’ve learned to let it go. I remind myself that mean people can’t be happy and I can’t let them bring me down with them. I love constructive criticism, by the way, as it helps me grow. I’m talking about the haters who just want to be mean. I have no time for them anymore.
8. You just have to be yourself.
I’ve read so many blogs where it’s clear they are trying to mimic the voice of another blogger. Ugh. Be yourself. Funny seems to do well on blogs, but I’ve never tried to be funny because I’m just not a funny person. (Well, my 5 year old thinks I’m hilarious, so maybe I’m selling myself short here…) If you want to blog, use your own unique voice and be you.
9. It’s okay to change your mind.
I remember being very scared to post a recipe with meat because I started out posting plant-based recipes. But my family was eating meat, so I finally just did it. It’s more authentic to be honest about changes in your life rather than try to hide it.
10. This is the perfect job for me.
Blogging lets me be creative,use my teaching background, satisfies my entrepreneurial spirit, and challenges me everyday. It also gives me flexibility to be a volunteer at my kids’ schools and be available more than if I was in a traditional job. I am so grateful for blogging.