6 things I've learned in 6 months of blogging

Thursday, 12 March 2015

euhnella has been on the blogosphere for 6 months today! Yay! To think that six months ago today, was the day I finally gathered up enough courage to finally launch myself into something I'd been thinking about doing for at least six years. As someone who had a lot of false starts, I'm glad I've stuck to my word of the year and stuck with it, even when I have days where I think 'what the hell am I doing?'. Here are six things I've learned so far on my blogging journey:

I. To thine own self be true. Like seriously. This is a piece of advice that appears everywhere and will continue to appear everywhere in blogging advice until the end of Internet time, because it's important, and it's true, and you should always bear it in mind. So, of course, my natural inclination is to ignore it. When you first start a blog, it's usually because you've been inspired by others who have done amazing things with their online space and you want to do something similar. In all the uncertainty of finding yourself, it can be easy to compare yourself and want to be like the bloggers you admire and forget that what needs to be developed is your own voice. I do this all the time, and it leads me to feeling like my writing isn't my own, like my blog isn't my own, and doubt what I'm doing, and I'm sure I'm not the only baby blogger out there who feels like that. 

II. The niche thing is actually pretty important. When I first started out blogging and was reading the 'how to set up a successful blog' articles we know we're all drawn to, the word niche kept coming up. I understood what they meant by niche - finding your one area of 'expertise' that you're known for, narrowing down what you blog about specifically within a bigger domain - but I didn't get why it was so important when I just wanted to blog about beauty and lifestyle. How do you niche that? It's taking me 6 months to realise that what they really mean is: know exactly what you're blogging about, and narrow it down to a few precise categories that you can eventually be known for, and also make your life a whole lot easier because your blog has focus. That's what the niche thing is about: focus. And focus is pretty important in the grand scheme of things, and it also helps your posts, and you, not feel so all over the place. 

III. Not having a lot of readers in the beginning is a good thing. I go through phases where I worry about my readership size and my follower count, but at the six month mark, it worries me less and less. The more I read and discover about blogging, the more I want to adjust things, and so I'm forever changing up my content, sprucing up my layout or trying out different blogging styles and features, and whilst doing that my blog is all over the place. I'm trying to figure out what my niche/focus is going to be, and that seems to require a lot of trial-and-error. And it feels a lot better to trial-and-error knowing that at most about 50 people a month are seeing those errors. It's less pressure, and I think pressure and perfectionism are some of the things that kill potentially great blogs. Which leads me to:

IV. Blogging is a great way to beat the perfectionist bug. I am a perfectionist by nature, and sometimes the worst kind, because I rarely jump into an endeavour where I feel I won't get to be a perfectionist. There is no such thing as a perfect blogger. Aiming for high follower count won't necessarily mean that your content and reader interaction is at that same level; churning out daily high-quality content won't guarantee that people are reading it; being great at social media won't promise that you're also good at understanding what makes up a great blog. Being a good blogger means being a good all-rounder, and working at things that don't necessarily come naturally come to you but are needed in your blog, so you have to say goodbye to perfectionist inclinations. It's just not going to happen. I've come to see that it's just one of those things where you have to give it your best for that day, and wake up the next day and try and do better, rather than trying to be perfect. This mentality has definitely spread to other areas of my life, which I'm grateful for.

V. It requires self-discipline. I've come to realise that if you want to eventually have a successful blog, no matter what your definition of success is, it requires regular hard work. Even if you only blog once a week, you need to have that blog post up every week so that at the end of the year you can say 'look at these 52 posts I put that I'm proud of', and for those 52 posts to go up, you need to write them. And sitting down to write can sometimes prove to be the hardest thing, especially since most of us are also studying, working and/or trying to have a life alongside blogging, so dragging yourself in front of the laptop, and doing all the work that goes behind a blog post when all you want to do is curl up with a good book or your favourite show on Netflix, requires a lot of self-discipline.

VI. Community is a big part of it. I know this may seem obvious, but in the transition from only being a blog reader to being a blogger, I seemed to forget that you don't stop being one because you're the other. It's true that the time you spent reading blogs is suddenly for writing blog posts, but no blogger is an island. I think it's really easy to forget when you start blogging, since I do it all the time, that to really be part of the blogging community, you have to be active. I love it when bloggers share their favourite bloggers or give a round up of their favourite articles that week, or seeing how bloggers interact with each other on Twitter, and it's definitely one of the things I want to improve on as I think it'd not only improve my blog, but the blogging experience as a whole.

Now to actually listen to my own advice for once, and put these things into practise so that I can continue to grow euhnella in the blog I've always dreamed of. 

What's one thing you've learned about blogging? 


  1. Congratulations on six months Ornella! And these are really interesting lessons, I completely agree with the one about a small audience being a good thing initially, I think about that all the time too! Interesting thoughts on niches too, it's becoming more and more prominent recently I think!
    Hannah x

  2. Such good pointers which are so easily forgotten!
    Jabeen x

    1. I know right! I should condense the post into short pointer and put it somewhere on my wall so I don't forget them x

  3. Good points! I think blogging really helps you find your own voice and interests. It's always nice typing or reading something that you're interested in. Thank you for sharing this lovely post! :)


    1. I totally agree! The only way to really find your voice is to use it and blogging allows that. Thank you for stopping by! x

  4. Well done you. In your 6 months you came up with 6 great an true points. I've been blooging for 3 years and couldn't agree with every single one of them. Patience it's very important too but for me it's all about the journey even though it sounds cheesy. It really is. I've learned so much through blogging. First one is so true and the second one too but is the one i found the hardest. I'm interested in so many things that I found difficult to find a niche. Keep up the good work!

  5. I did my blog yesterday and this things that you said in your post helps a Lot !! Good luck and keep up