The 5 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started Blogging

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I received a disheartening email the other day, that I had missed a deadline for a sponsored post on my blog.

I was so upset with myself for letting that happen. I’m always on top of my emails! Except, when I really think about it, I’ve let quite a few go unanswered for far too long. This eventually led me down a rabbit hole of self-deprecating thoughts about work/life balance and what am I even doing here, and why isn’t my planner doing its job?!

I’m the one who has failed to use my planner to the best of its ability. I fill up the pages each Sunday and add my tasks and to-dos at the beginning of each day. But those are 90% work related, as that seems to have been occupying much of my time lately. Personal life. Blog stuff. I am letting those things slide and that makes me terribly sad.

I’m taking a page from Karen’s blog where she wrote a post about the 5 things she wish she knew before she started blogging. I could likely write a book about this very topic, but I’ll spare you and share with you just a few things that could possibly have saved me time, stress, and money over the years.

  1. That blogging requires discipline, stamina, and authenticity. To date, I have published more than 800 posts, suffered from writer’s block on more occasions than I could ever recall, responded to (nearly!) 10,000 comments, and tried to remain my most authentic self always
  2. That there are cliques and sometimes you’ll find yourself hanging with the wrong crowd. A while ago I wrote this post about getting kicked out of a Facebook group. Yup. That happened. I’m over it now, but the experience taught me a lot—mainly to surround myself with nice people
  3. That in order to succeed, you have to be willing to learn. I recently signed up for an email marketing course as well as a pitch class. There will always be new social tools, apps, and ways to take your online space to the next level but don’t get swept up in the hype. Focus on one or two things you’d like to improve on and go from there!
  4. That sometimes it’s worth splurging on someone who can help you with your media kit, website edits, tech stuff, etc. Believe me!
  5. That so-and-so might be KILLING IT with her blog, but that YOU are perfect just the way you are. We can learn from our peers, but there’s no sense in emulating them, because then we lose our authenticity.

As Dr. Seuss saysToday you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”

What are some things you’ve learned over the years of blogging, and how long have you been in the game? Would love to hear from you!

21 Comments… add one
Karen January 24, 2018, 1:04 PM

I can’t ever imagine you getting kicked out of a group lol

But yes, I have learned to choose your friends wisely since starting. It can be very clique-y and negative in some places.

I’m glad you joined in with what you wish you knew Charlotte.

For What It’s Worth

ShootingStarsMag January 24, 2018, 2:42 PM

Great post! I’m sure I could write all sorts of things on this topic as I’ve been blogging for a little over 10 years now. I guess finding the right support system, not letting jealousy or other people’s blogs get you down or make you want to do something you’re not that into (though I feel like I do fairly well with this). you don’t have to say YES to everything and everyone if you don’t want to, etc. etc.

-Lauren

Linds January 24, 2018, 3:42 PM

I have a few of your blog posts to catch up on yet (don’t I always?! LOL) but this one caught my eye.

YESSSSS!! You have to have stamina. #5 is my favorite. I try to remind myself that all.the.time. Don’t compare yourself to others because lets face it, we’re all unique.

<3 love you

P.S. LOL at the FB group comment. You and me both girl. Karma baby, it comes back to bite you in the ass almost always.

Sheryl January 24, 2018, 4:47 PM

I started blogging with no true intention rather than to write and it has only been in the last several months I have begun to steer myself differently. I think the most important thing I have learned is to connect with the right people and stop comparing… I got kicked out of that’s FB group too and my life is better for it!!

lisa thomson January 24, 2018, 5:20 PM

First, I have to say you’re one of the most genuine and personable bloggers out there and that’s why I love visiting you as often as I can! Success will continue for you, Charlotte, despite missing one deadline. Your list of lessons are familiar to me and it’s so awesome that you’ve shared them. I have suffered writer’s block a time or two and I think it’s related to merely being a little bored with my topic (at times). I hate to say this; but one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned is that no one really cares as much as we do, about our own blog. If we’re passionate, we can continue writing. I don’t honestly know how to measure the success of a blog. I guess it depends on what we’re trying to achieve.

Trish @ The Trish List January 24, 2018, 5:58 PM

Girl, you are speaking my language. This has been my life lately. Nothing seems to be balanced enough to get things done on my blog. Between work, being pregnant, and just life in general my blog suffers the most and that makes me sad. I am hoping I get that back to a balanced space in the months to come.

Shannon January 24, 2018, 8:46 PM

Awww charlotte! Don’t be so hard on yourself! Although we all are…. the balance is SO tough for me. When you figure it out please let me know lol….

Crystal // Dreams, etc. January 24, 2018, 11:45 PM

Sometimes the balance doesn’t… balance. That was all of 2017 for me. It’s hard sometimes. I love all these things you listed, though. Especially #1. So so true.

Anthea January 25, 2018, 6:58 AM

Thank you for sharing this Charlotte. Sometimes life gets super busy and finding time to update your blog isn’t easy. I love number 1 on your list and totally agree 🙂

Shybiker January 25, 2018, 10:31 AM

Life is an endless opportunity for learning and blogging is no different. Over the past decade, I’ve learned SO MUCH through blogging — not only about the activity but human behavior as well. And myself. The best thing one can do is be open to learning; experience will supply the teaching.

Emily January 25, 2018, 4:54 PM

Love this post. I completely agree that you have to be willing to learn. I think it’s very beneficial to invest in courses and other tools.

Tamara January 26, 2018, 6:46 PM

Aw.. I hate that feeling. I have missed deadlines and it feels awful. Yet on the other side of things when I manage Influencers, half of them miss deadlines and I cut them slack! So that should help.
Your #5 thing is perfect. That’s the #1 thing I wish I’d always known.

Kerr February 6, 2018, 9:58 AM

Fantastic post. There is so much I wish I knew!!

Emma February 6, 2018, 1:21 PM

Such a helpful post!! I’m still new to blogging (in my first year) and posts like these are what inspire but also help me to figure it all out!

Viveena Rodrigues February 6, 2018, 1:43 PM

The first point I agree with 💯. Blogging demands discipline & yes each day there’s some thing new to learn – social media is changing so rapidly

Alex February 6, 2018, 2:33 PM

I love this, and I love Dr. Seuss 😛

Shelbie (9to5hiatus) February 6, 2018, 4:02 PM

This is a great post. It really hits home! Discipline is key! And I couldn’t agree more, we shouldn’t compare ourselves to other bloggers but just reach for our own goals 🙂

Grace February 6, 2018, 5:19 PM

Great tips you included in this post 🙂 I really agree with point #3! I totally underestimated how much there is to learn on this blogging journey when I first started and that investing in yourself is so important. It really is a continuous learning process!

Grace | https://glossybelle.com

Maria February 6, 2018, 10:27 PM

These are some great tips!! Blogging definitely takes A LOT of time so dedication and discipline are important.

Lori February 6, 2018, 10:40 PM

These are so good. I especially like #5. Thanks for sharing!

Joy February 6, 2018, 11:36 PM

I just started my blog about 7 months ago and I’m starting to realize all of this. It’s scary and it’s a lot of work, but your last point put it all into perspective for me. I am doing the right thing for ME!

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