2 Year Blogiversary- Lessons Learned, Advice for New Bloggers + Reader Survey & Giveaway

2 Year Blogiversary- Lessons Learned, Advice for New Bloggers + Reader Survey & Giveaway

*this post contains affiliate links. Thank-you for supporting Kindly Unspoken! 

2 Year Blogiversary

Time really does fly when you’re having fun, right? I seriously can’t believe that I’ve officially been blogging for two whole years now, but here we are! It’s been such an incredible journey and I can honestly say I’ve learned more in the last two years about myself than I could have ever imagined.

Related: One Year Blogiversary

To think this time two years ago I was sitting around wondering “what if”, but I thank God that he gave me the courage to finally take that first step forward in putting myself out there and following my dreams.

2 Year Blogiversary- Lessons Learned + Advice for New Bloggers

Lessons Learned

This past year, in a nutshell, has been insane. Up until August, I was working full-time (doing multiple jobs in my workplace I might add) and blogging on the side. But if I’m being honest, I’ve been putting in well over full-time hours with my blog for a LONG time, so when the opportunity finally arrived for me to really pursue blogging full-time, I jumped on it.

Related: Moving Forward- A Huge Announcement

If there’s one thing I learned this year, it’s that you can spend your whole life waiting for that “magical golden window of opportunity” but truthfully you sometimes have to just take a leap of faith and go for it.

I’ve did a lot of soul searching this year and had many nights where I questioned whether or not I was doing the right thing. (And I’m sure I’ll still have more of those in the future, because let’s be real- blogging is a journey.) But at the end of the day, I’d rather take a risk and be proud of the fact that I at least tried, then spend my whole life living with regret over the things I didn’t do.

2 Year Blogiversary- Lessons Learned, Advice for New Bloggers + Reader Survey & Giveaway

Outfit Details: Sweater (TJ Maxx), Pants (Old Navy), Boots (Zooshoo), Necklace & Hat (Walmart)

Advice for New Bloggers

The further I get in my blogging journey, the more I realize that I truly want to help other bloggers out there who are wanting to pursue going full-time. So for that reason, I’ve put together my top 3 tips for new bloggers below.

Go After Your Dreams Wholeheartedly

One of my favorite quotes ever is “Never let the fear of striking out, keep you from playing the game.” (Bonus points if you can name what movie this was in!)

It can be so incredibly easy to let fear and self-doubt get in the way of not doing something or going after something you are passionate about. There’s always so many “what-ifs” and “I don’t knows” but the truth of the matter is this- just because you’re scared doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. Just because you have people in your life telling you it’s a stupid idea or that no one will ever buy what you are creating, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still do it.

If you want to do it, then do it. If you love it, then put your whole heart and soul into it and never look back.

[bctt tweet=”Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game” username=”Cara_kindly”]

Trust me when I say, there will always be people out there who don’t believe in you, who won’t support you, and who will try to tear you down every chance they get. Don’t listen to them. Surround yourself with great friends and family members who do believe in you and let the toxic people in your life go.

And feel free to delete any rude comments that random people send your way. Nobody likes trolls and you don’t need that kind of negativity in your life.

Be Yourself, Everyone Else is Already Taken

When I first started blogging, I remember looking up to so many successful bloggers out there for inspiration and ideas. And while gathering inspiration is one thing, downright copying is no bueno. It’s unfortunate that too many bloggers out there try to copy others instead of just being themselves.

At the end of the day we’re all unique and we all have different things we can bring to the table. Be you, and don’t try copying anyone else out there. Find what it is that you can connect with your readers on and focus on building upon that.

You’ll hear a lot of bloggers out there give the advice “Find your Tribe” and it’s honestly such great advice. You won’t always be everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s okay. Focus on finding the people you can connect with, and be the real, raw, honest you.

I’d much rather connect with my readers on a real level than try to ever pretend to be something I’m not. God made you just the way you are, so rock it!

[bctt tweet=”God made you just the way you are, so rock it!” username=”Cara_kindly”]

Invest in Your Dream

One of the things I wish I had done sooner in my blogging journey is invest in my dream. Yes there are a ton of great resources on Pinterest and other blogging websites for free, but at the end of the day if you’re someone who wants to really take your blog to the next level and monetize it, then you have to spend money.

Once I started investing in my self and my blog by enrolling in courses and purchasing helpful tools, I noticed a drastic improvement to my blog’s readership and it has helped me better understand just what it takes to be a successful full-time blogger.

I’m currently working on an in-depth post on all of my favorite courses, workshops, and blogging tools that have helped me exponentially, so let me know if there’s anything specific you’re interested in hearing my thoughts on!

In particular, if you’re looking to start working with brands on sponsored posts, I highly recommend checking out Boss Pitch! My girl Erica from Coming Up Roses created this course based on her marketing expertise and her own success in working with brands.

I was smart enough to sign up for this course when it was first released this time last year, and let me tell you friends, it was the best money I’ve ever spent on a blogging course- hands down!

Since taking Boss Pitch, I’ve increased my blogging earnings by almost 500%, and that’s just been from blogging on a part-time basis. You can check out detailed information on Boss Pitch over here, as well as tons of amazing testimonials from other bloggers who have found success in taking the course.


2 Year Blogiversary- Lessons Learned, Advice for New Bloggers + Giveaway

Giveaway Time!

In celebration of my 2 Year Blogiversary and because you all rock, I’m giving away a pair of Ruby Black Frame- Grey Gradient Lens DIFF sunglasses for one lucky winner! As you all know I’m a DIFF Ambassador/Model and I absolutely adore both the look and quality of DIFF sunnies! Even better, for every pair of sunglasses purchased, they donate a pair of eye glasses to someone in need, which is amazing!

For two entries in my giveaway, simply complete my reader survey below and comment on this post letting me know you completed my survey! That’s it- easy, peasy!- Update: Giveaway now closed!

*Contest runs from November 06, 2017 –  November 10, 2017 at Noon EST. Winner will be chosen via random generator and will be notified via e-mail to confirm acceptance of prize. Giveaway is not associated nor sponsored by DIFF.

Reader Survey

As another year has already come and gone, I’d love to hear from each of you! Please do me a huge favor and fill out this brief survey to help me better understand what content you love most on my blog! It’ll only take a couple minutes- plus it’ll enter you for a chance at winning a gorgeous pair of sunnies! 🙂

Take My Survey Here!


From the bottom of my heart, thank-you to each and every one of you for following along with me and taking time out of your busy worlds to tune into mine. You truly don’t know how much I appreciate you and having loyal readers on my blog is such a blessing I’ll never take for granted.

As always, thanks for stopping by! – Cara

Leave a Comment

 

106 Comments

  1. Happy blogiversary!! I cannot believe two years have already flown by! It seems like yesterday, I was introduced to your blog. But I guess time flies when you are having fun! 😉

    Posted 11.15.17 Reply
    • Thank-you Erin! This year has flew by! Here’s to time slowing down a little! 🙂

      Posted 11.27.17 Reply
  2. Michelle J. wrote:

    I completed the survey!

    Posted 11.10.17 Reply
  3. Happy 2 year blog anniversary sweetheart! I am so proud of you! I am totally in support of your work and dreams! I also love your style too! xo

    Posted 11.8.17 Reply
  4. HilLesha wrote:

    Congratulations on the anniversary! By the way, I just signed the survey. 🙂

    Posted 11.8.17 Reply
  5. Alexis wrote:

    Happy blog-iversary, lady! Reader survey has been completed 🙂

    Posted 11.8.17 Reply
  6. Mistle wrote:

    Congrats on your two year blogiversary!!! I am so glad that I have gotten to know you through blogging. I agree that when you first start off as a blogger trying to be like all the other bloggers is common but being yourself is the best. I can’t wait to see what this next year of blogging has in store for you!

    Posted 11.8.17 Reply
    • Thanks so much Mistle! Likewise, I’ve really enjoyed getting to know you along this blogging journey and can’t wait to keep seeing more of your posts! 🙂

      Posted 11.27.17 Reply
  7. Happy blogiversary!!!!! SO happy for you!!!

    Posted 11.7.17 Reply
  8. Sharon wrote:

    Congrats on the anniversary! I hope I’m courageous enough to pursue it full-time one day.

    Posted 11.7.17 Reply
    • Thanks Sharon! You have amazing recipes so I say go for it! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  9. Congrats on two years! That’s so amazing, and so happy you made the leap and decided to blog full time. Can’t wait to see what the next year has in store for you! love that outfit, those leopard pants, swoon.

    Posted 11.7.17 Reply
    • Thanks Sarah! I’m just excited to get the opportunity- it’s so rare that you get those kind of opportunities in life. 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  10. Happy Blogiversary! I will have to check out those course offerings. I love Diff eyewear. My Cruz’s are my favorite!

    Posted 11.7.17 Reply
    • Thanks Tanya! Diff is such a great brand! And I’m sunnies obsessed so I love them!

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  11. Happy blog anniversary!! Cheers to many more <3

    Posted 11.7.17 Reply
  12. Marissa wrote:

    Happy Blogiversary! These are great lessons you’ve learned already.

    Posted 11.7.17 Reply
  13. This is very inspiring! I’m still in my first year – and the struggle is real! But that’s all part of it. Congratulations!

    Posted 11.7.17 Reply
    • Thanks Nicole! It takes awhile to get in a good groove with it, but it’s well worth it! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  14. Ruth Ridley wrote:

    Congratulations!! Such a huge accomplishment!!

    Posted 11.7.17 Reply
  15. GIRL I didn’t even expect to see BossPitch mentioned here – what a happy surprise! 🙂 HAPPY BLOGIVERSARY – so proud of you + all of your amazing successes.

    Posted 11.7.17 Reply
    • Thanks Erica! And yes happy to share it with others- it truly was/is a wonderful course that so many can benefit from! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  16. Roxy wrote:

    Happy Blogiversary! Loved your reflection on it, I’ve started and stopped blogging so many times but you’re so right, sometimes you just have to take the leap!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thank-you! Absolutely! And I think it’s completely okay to take breaks too as needed. At the end of the day it’s all about priorities. 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  17. Hannah wrote:

    Happy Blogiversary! I started blogging about a year and a half ago but just started really taking it seriously (like October recently). I couldn’t agree more than with the part where you say you’d rather connect on a real level than pretend to be something your not.

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thank-you! Absolutely! And it’s so important to realize not everyone is going to be your cup of tea and vice versa. It takes all kinds of kinds in this world and that’s okay. 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  18. Congrats on two years blogging! That’s fantastic. I’d love to do blogging full time or at least make it more of a sustainable way to make money.

    -Lauren

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thank-you! I’m still learning but I’m happy to share my experiences along the way in the hopes that it helps other aspiring bloggers! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  19. La Shell wrote:

    Lovely advice and happy anniversary! I’m new to blogging and I take your advice wholeheartedly. Thank you!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  20. Happy Blogiversary! Love your leopard pants!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thanks Mallorie! I’ve definitely been loving all things leopard lately! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  21. jordyn wrote:

    Great reflection! I retweeted your tweet as well!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  22. Chelsea wrote:

    HOLY CRAP!!! That went sooooo fast! Congrats, beautiful lady! I love reading your blog. Your space is so comforting, warm, and inviting. One of my favorites! <3 Keep rocking it!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thank-you! I know, right?! Like I swear this year went by in hyper speed mode lol. And thanks so much- I appreciate your sweet comments! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  23. Polly wrote:

    Congratulations! I’ve been blogging for just over a year and there are definitely times when I’ve felt like giving up… reading positive stories like this always helps! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  24. G&D Blog wrote:

    Oh my! Happy Blogiversary! Wow, 2 years! Not kidding here, but the song playing right now in our home while reading this is “What a Journey It Has Been” and yes, I’m so glad to hear with the journey that you’ve been. I can’t wait for my 1st Blogiversary next year.

    -Gerome of G&D Blog
    http://www.gdblog.net

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  25. emelia wrote:

    Happy 2 years beautiful, I love following along your blog and journey! I love your tips you shared- especially investing in yourself. Here’s to many more exciting years in blogland!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thanks so much Emelia! So glad to have met you along this journey! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  26. Victoria wrote:

    This is such great advice! I just recently had my own 2 year blogiversary, and I wish I had read a post like this when I was first starting out. 🙂

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  27. Sierra wrote:

    Happy anniversary!! Time flies when you’re having fun! So many exciting things coming up for you! Sierra ~ Beautifully Candid

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  28. Happy blogiversary! So exciting! Love your advice for new bloggers, too! Always, ALWAYS follow your dreams and go after then with everything you’ve got within you. If I hadn’t taken a crazy leap of faith in February, I would never have gotten where I am today. New bloggers definitely need to hold onto their dreams and keep on dreaming.

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thanks so much! And absolutely! I think what a lot of new bloggers don’t understand is that blogging can sometimes be an emotional roller coaster and just with anything there’s ups and downs. In the end, it’s about focusing on the ups and learning from the downs and always keeping sight of your dream. So glad you took the leap as well- congrats! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  29. Congrats on your anniversary and again on going full time with your blog! Took the survey!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  30. Rachel wrote:

    Congrats on two years!! Loved the lessons you’ve learned! I’ve been deleting comments too and love it

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thank-you! It’s not worth even giving them your attention. Trolls are just that- trolls lol.

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  31. Nikki Gwin wrote:

    I am really interested to find out what courses were your favorite. I look forward to that post.
    🙂 gwingal

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  32. Nadine wrote:

    Happy Blogiversary!!!! I just had the discussion recently about needing to invest in myself and my favorite hobbies. I have enjoyed following along with you!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thanks Nadine! I love your blog as well and always love your fun confessions posts and recipes! (I know it’s hard though when you have a little one crawling around though lol)

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  33. Katie wrote:

    Congrats on 2 years girl! That’s great!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  34. Whitney wrote:

    Happy Bloggy Birthday!! Loved your advice

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  35. Jennifer wrote:

    Congratulations on two years Cara! And, what beautiful advice. That is not only great blog advice, but just great life advice in general. It really hits home. I love following along with you and I’m excited to see where this adventure takes you!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thank-you Jennifer! So glad we’ve became blogging friends along the way! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  36. SMD wrote:

    Happy happy! Wishing you continued success on your journey.

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  37. Alexa wrote:

    Congrats on two years! So awesome that you were finally able to take your blog full time. This was a great read as a new blogger!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  38. Willow wrote:

    Congrats on 2 years! I am going on 3 years and love every minute of it. I am so glad that I didn’t let fear stop me!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  39. Happy Blogiversary babe! I still can’t believe you made the jump to full time blogging but good for you! I’m glad that you’ve been so successful! <3, Pamela Sequins & Sea Breezes

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Aw thanks Pamela! It’s all trial and error but a great learning experience if nothing else! 😉

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  40. Tasia Bruderer wrote:

    Such a great words to share! I’m in my first year of blogging and sometimes it’s intimidating to post content in the hopes that people will like it. Congratulations on your 2 year blogging journey!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thanks Tasia! It can really scary to put yourself out there, but if you’re passionate about it, that’s all that matters at the end of the day. Do what you love and love what you do and you’ll never grow tired of it! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  41. Lily wrote:

    Congrats, girlfriend!! Loved reading this…definitely great for newbies and seasoned bloggers as well. Wishing you many more years!
    xo, Lily
    Beauty With Lily

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thanks so much Lily! Glad to have met you along this blogging journey!

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  42. Mary wrote:

    Congratulations on your 2 year Blogiversary! Survey complete!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  43. I swear, I feel like I Just read your post on one year. Where did that past year go?!?!?! Crazy!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  44. Shelby wrote:

    Survey complete!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  45. So glad to see your success. I have been following along for at least a year of your two! Here’s to twenty more years!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thanks Michele! So glad to have you following along! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  46. Congrats on two years!! I can’t believe it! Also, I entered the giveaway – yay!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  47. Congrats on your blogging anniversary. I love that you reflected back on the two years and grew from it. Now you can be even more amazing with your site.

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  48. Kate wrote:

    Happy Blogiversary girlie! Amazing advice, especially to just be yourself <3
    Green Fashionista

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thanks Kate! It’s great advice to just be true to yourself. 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  49. Helen wrote:

    Happy Blogiversary!! So exciting! Love that fall look and congratulations on making it your full-time job!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thanks Helen! Congrats on all your successes as well! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  50. Congrats on your anniversary! Sometimes, it’s a thankless job, but you seem to be doing well!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thank-you! Absolutely- that’s why it helps to connect with likeminded bloggers who can help support one another! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  51. Congratulations on your 2 year blogaversary! That’s a big achievement. So many people give up before making it to the one year mark. Also congrats on making this your full-time gig. That’s a big leap and a big decision. I’m glad it’s working out.

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
    • Thank-you! It’s all a learning experience but I’m excited to see what lies ahead! 🙂

      Posted 11.11.17 Reply
  52. Timothy Ferguson wrote:

    Love the blog and Happy Blogiversary. As Casey Kasem used to say keep reaching for the stars.

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply
  53. What great reflections on your blog anniversary! Being an authentic voice is so important!

    Posted 11.6.17 Reply