3 Year Blogiversary – Lessons Learned + Reader Q&A
Happy Friday, friends! It’s truly hard to believe it, but it’s officially my 3 Year Blogiversary! It honestly feels like yesterday I was writing my 2 Year Blogiversary post but here we are. Today I’m excited to share the highs, the lows, and lessons learned from blogging over the past three years.
I’m also excited to share how things have changed for me this past year with blogging full time and working from home, and answer some of the questions that you all sent in from my Instagram stories. If any of those topics interest you then keep reading and let’s chat, shall we?
3 Year Blogiversary- My Journey Over The Years
When I look back on my blogging journey I realize how incredibly brave I was to pursue my dreams and I’m honestly proud of the fearless person I’ve become over the last three years and how I didn’t give up even when the road was hard and bumpy.
Taking the leap of faith to quit my full-time day job and start blogging full time was a riveting yet scary decision and while I’m very happy about how things have turned out, that’s not to say I haven’t had my moments of doubt and nights of wondering if everything was going to work out.
Even though my husband has a wonderful job as a Federal Police Officer and our family is blessed to have everything we need, I personally never wanted to just stay at home and not contribute. So when I started this blog three years ago I always had the goal of making it into something more and I’ve always had big dreams.
Three years ago, I obtained my Master’s Degree in Managerial Communications & Marketing and from that moment I wanted to find a role where I could share my passions and unleash my full potential. Although I was grateful for my previous job, I never felt passionate about it and unfortunately I was in a role where I would never be able to let my talents shine and to be honest, never really felt appreciated.
That’s when I decided to pursue blogging and honestly it was the best decision I’ve ever made. It’s always been the perfect creative outlet where I can share my passion for makeup, beauty, fashion, and encouraging others, and I can’t imagine life without blogging at this point.
Rome Wasn’t Built In a Day
I think the biggest lesson I’ve learned with blogging is patience. Even though it’s sometimes been frustrating to not grow or progress as quickly as I would like, I realize now that my slow but steady growth has taught me so many valuable lessons. I’m a strong believer in authentic growth and to me there really are no shortcuts to success. Hard work, perseverance, and dedication pays off and even when you feel like you’re spinning your wheels, know that every day is one step closer to your goal.
You Can Do Anything, But Not Everything
As a blogger it can be easy to fall in the trap of wanting to do it all and have it all. But at the end of the day something has to give because there’s literally only so many hours in the day. Instead of trying to focus on being on 87 social media platforms, I started focusing in on 2-3 of my strongest ones and that’s when I started to really notice a shift in gaining a more engaged audience and growing more. My blog for me is always my number one focus because I 110% own it, but I also try to focus on Pinterest, Facebook, and even Instagram (though I sometimes have a love/dislike relationship with it-ha!)
Celebrate Your Wins- Big and Small
Last but not least, I’ve learned the importance of celebrating my wins- no matter if it’s big or small. The blogging industry can be a bit of a rollercoaster sometimes and working at home by myself can sometimes get lonely. But taking the time to celebrate the wins and give myself a pat on the back when something great happens, really makes me reflect and appreciate the hard work that I put into everything. (I totally recommend everyone do this, no matter what job you have!)
What’s one thing you wish more people realized about bloggers?
Mostly I just want people to know and appreciate the fact that bloggers are some of the hardest working people you’ll ever meet. Their total boss babes, hustlers, and jack of all trades, and it’s honestly amazing how they(we) manage to do it all.
From writing posts, creating content, taking and editing photographs, managing social media accounts, pitching to brands, answering and sending out e-mails, and much more, it can be A LOT to manage and handle.
That’s the part about blogging and being your own “boss” that no one tells you. Working for yourself- the pressure is all on YOU and you alone to ensure you’re doing everything you need to do to get the jobs done. It isn’t like a traditional organization where you have other employees each with their own individual tasks, it’s all up to you.
I talked a little bit more about what bloggers do in this post over here, but for me everyday is always different and there’s always something to do. And if there’s one thing I’ve had to get rock solid good at over the last 3 years, it’s time management and multi-tasking.
What is the best investment you’ve made?
I actually wrote a whole post on the 25 best blogging tools for growing your blog over here, but if I had to choose one investment that had a huge role in helping me go full-time it would hands-down be Boss Pitch.
I wouldn’t be able to do what I do everyday without brand partnerships and the Boss Pitch course gave me all the tools and encouragement I needed to start pitching to brands directly and stop relying on blog networks.
Before Boss Pitch, I was tired of always being told by brands that they didn’t have a budget. I was tired of putting in long hours of work and going the extra mile for just free product or a low payment. I knew that if I was ever going to go full time with my blog that I had to figure out the secret sauce to getting more and finding the brands out there that valued bloggers, and that’s what this course does.
I’ve now had the incredible pleasure of working with over 50 national brands including Physicians Formula, Kohls, Patchology, Dr Pepper, and adidas just to name a few! I 110% would recommend Boss Pitch to any blogger looking to go full time or even just to monetize their blog. It’s well worth every penny, and Erica, the creator and instructor, is SO sweet and definitely knows her stuff!
What was your “ah-ha” moment for turning your blog full-time?
Honestly, I just kept having this little voice in my head tell me to go for it. At the time, I was already starting to have success in growing my audience and landing brand partnerships, and I just really felt in my heart that if given the time I could make it happen.
Everything lined up for the opportunity when we moved to Georgia last year and I knew if I didn’t go for it then, that I would probably never have another chance to pursue it.
Was it scary? Absolutely. Was it worth it? Ten-fold. I’m incredibly blessed and thankful to say that I’m currently making a full-time income from my blog and I’m really proud of that — especially since a lot of people doubted me and probably thought I was crazy.
Like I’ve always said, if you have a dream then go after it, and don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.
What advice would you give new bloggers starting out?
I’ve met a lot of great bloggers over the years, and the ones that have found success and are still rocking it know their “why” and fully own it. My advice to new bloggers is to figure out what it is that makes you and your blog unique and figure out what it is that makes you passionate about your blog.
Blogging isn’t for the faint of heart, it’s hard work, long hours, and sometimes it takes years before you start to see success with what you’re doing. But as long as you have your “why” in the back of your mind, you’ll always be able to persevere even when things get rough.
So what’s next for Kindly Unspoken? Well, big things my friends! Next week I’ll finally be sharing the great news I’ve been dying to share with you all, and I’m so excited for what lies ahead.
Thank you to each and every one of you for following along with me and my blog. I’m forever grateful for your love and support.
If you’re new here or if you’ve been a follower since the beginning, I’d love to know what keeps you coming back to my blog. Leave me a comment below and let me know! 🙂
As always, thanks for stopping by!- Cara