8 Lessons from 8 Years of Blogging

28 Dec 2020 United Kingdom

I can't quite believe that it's been 8 years since I set up my blog. While my blog is definitely not in the same place as when I started, every year it's taught me something new and has become a lovely little part of my life. I shared not too long ago why it is I still blog and I thought I'd follow on from that and share some lessons that my blog has taught me - not just about blogging but about myself as well. 

1. Not everyone will understand, but that's OK! 

I remember sharing a post years ago "Yes, I have a blog". It was when I was still in school, my blog was still very much my own space. As a few people started to discover it, it became hard to really hide it and I didn't really want to anymore - I wanted to tell people! 

There were definitely some people who didn't get it (some of which later have messaged me to ask for help with their own social media), some that were just curious ("so are you, like, Zoella?"), some who just didn't care and those who embraced it and I grew to be fine with all of this! There are still times where my little hobby is the wrong end of a joke but I laugh it off and carry on as I always have. I also think part of it has been growing up and being in a space where it's quite normal to do what I do and I'm happy to be open about my blog. 

2. Writing, SEO, marketing and more! 

I'm yet to really share I whole post about this but I very much believe that I wouldn't be in the position I am now, professionally, without my blog. From blogging to writing articles for others to writing freelance articles to landing my internship and onto my full-time role of SEO exec, my blog has given my opportunities and experience that has allowed me to work in marketing like I always wanted. 

It's taught me so many skills that my degree did not and that even a marketing degree couldn't have given me. I'm so happy I've carried on bloggers for 8 years as it's become like an online portfolio of not just my writing and a place I can almost showcase myself!

3. The best inspiration comes from those around you

This kind of draws on something from #1. Now more than ever, I'm surrounded by people who not only just get me but also inspire me and a lot of the time, without even knowing it! Whether it's seeing them starting up their own side hustle, having conversations that spark an idea or letting me share ideas for feedback. I have some truly fantastic friends and people that are definitely one of the biggest sources of inspiration for what I've created. So, if you're reading this - thank you!! 

4. There are people just like you

Whether it's people going through similar things, having the same difficulties, there's always going to be someone out there that can relate. The blogging community on Twitter and now Instagram was a blessing to discover. For supplying inspiration but having people who understand blogging problems. A lack of inspiration, motivation, perhaps a technical issue. The blogging community has definitely had it's low moments but there's a great community to support you and chat to whenever you need. 

5. Find time for things you love

Not only just finding time to blog but this expands to other hobbies as well. Finding time to do what makes you happen can offer even more inspiration but really it gives you a break to do something else in between other commitments. Blogging gave me an outlet away from studying and something completely different to focus on and I was so glad I had that to step away from the stress and do something I enjoy each week. 

6. It's not all about the money

To be completely honest, there was definitely a point where I did care too much about the money that blogging gave me. It was when I was lacking focus, motivation to be creative and I just wanted some form of positive reinforcement to keep me sharing posts. After there being a point where I was getting regular sponsored posts, when that dwindled out I actually didn't mind in the end. The pressure of needing money had gone with my job and it allowed me to find my creativity again and let it flourish! That dry-spell of sponsorships really put into perspective why I personally still blog and what I wanted out of it and, for me right now, it's not the money. 

7. Take breaks is a good thing

I can't stress this one enough! I always felt guilty during uni when I did have to prioritise my studies and also my part-time job at the time but, looking back at it, not pressuring myself allowed me to produce content that I only really wanted to. It let me take a step back, think of new ideas and come back to it with a fresh head of ideas. My breaks have never been intentional. It's usually I have too much going on and something has to give and it's usually this. I've learnt that that's okay and actually the best thing for myself and my blog. 

8. You really don't need a niche

I remember back around 2015 when I was posting more regularly, every post someone shared around starting a blog, how to get rich from blogging, blogging tips you must follow all said the same thing - "find your niche" and it's probably the biggest piece of advice I disagree with. While yes, it offers you focus, it gives you a place in the blogosphere, is it really what you want your blog to me. Take me for example, I want to blog about books, productivity, self-care, sometimes fashion and beauty - where does that sit? Lifestyle is usually the answer and I go with that but I don't let that stop me sharing any of the content I do. 

My main piece of advice is if you don't want to stick to one niche forever, then don't feel you have to, to have a voice in this space. Just be you! 

I'd love to hear what you think of these. 
Thanks for reading, 
Sarah x 

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