Hi guys!! Happy Thursday!! Today is a Thursday that is really my Friday because I’m leaving tomorrow for my best friend Kelly’s wedding in Dublin, OH! I’m so excited. Seriously can’t wait. And I’m sure I will share all my pics on Monday when I get back!
(Sidenote: Did anyone notice that my lens cap is still on in my main pic at the top LOL. Ugh. Such a freakin’ fail!)
But you guys.
Grab your coffee, take a nice long sip, because it’s coffee talk day!!
If this is your first coffee talk WELCOME! So happy you’re here! Every Thursday we just kind of chat about whatever is going on. And then you let me know your thoughts. And we pretend we’re on a little coffee date. And we get super caffeinated along the way.
So seriously, y’all, grab a mug.
One of the suggestions I got was from sweet Jessica (@jessicagreverphotography) and she wanted to chat about what drives me to blog everyday and how I grew my blogging platform. Which I LOVE because I could probably talk about blogging all damn day.
I originally began blogging because I just needed a creative outlet. I’ve always loved writing and painting and all things creative, which, unfortunately, just wasn’t a priority in my life for awhile. I feel like so many of us have the desire to be creative but real life comes in and you just don’t have time. Or energy. Or inspiration. And the further and further we get from our creative side, the more it shrinks.
I really started feeling my creativity disappear when I started my job. As I’m sure you guys know, I’m not a full-time blogger (I wish! LOL) and during the day I am a mortgage loan processor. I know it sounds super-snoozy but I really do love what I do. My company is a huge part of the veteran community, and I love going to work every day and helping our veterans. It really is so fulfilling. But, at the same time, I’m sure you can imagine mortgages aren’t exactly creatively fulfilling.
So, I started blogging.
When I first started out, I talked mostly about restaurants and experiences in Chicago because that was just what was going on with my life at the time. And as time went on, my health changed, and my eating habits had to change with it. I couldn’t keep posting a pic of a burger with a perfectly-cooked egg and a pound of cheese oozing out because I just couldn’t eat that anymore. And I thought that once I stopped talking about restaurants nobody would want to read my blog anymore.
Luckily, I was wrong!
More people were starting to read my blog. And I think that was because when I talked about my lifestyle (and not just my Chicago lifestyle), more people could relate.
But, it definitely wasn’t immediate.
Sometimes I literally felt like I was just sitting here talking to a wall.
One day, though, I was writing a post and having my coffee and just genuinely enjoying myself and I realized that I literally didn’t care if no one read it. Even if it was just my mom (hi, Mumsy!) it started a conversation between us. And she could see what was going on in my life so far away. And we could talk about it.
So, that’s what drove me.
And some days are hard. Some days I just feel drained, or like I have nothing to talk about, or like nobody will care about this, or I don’t have any pictures and I get stressed. But then someone totally random will say I love your blog! and it seriously makes me SO happy that I realize I couldn’t just stop at this point. I love it too much!
So I wake up every morning at 5:37 and I work on it.
Yes, every morning.
I’ve told you several times I’m kind of a psycho.
But that leads into some of my tips for growing your own blogging platform! (Such a smooth transition, amiright?!)
Find time to work on it daily.
I know this sounds tough, but it really does work. And it’s important to find the time that works for you. I found myself super drained at the end of the day and it felt like I had no creativity left in me. My most creative times were weekend mornings. So, I started waking up earlier. Simple as that. Do I enjoy waking up at 5:37 every day? Um, no. There are some snoozes that happen. But I love it so much, I’m excited to wake up and work on it.
When you’re having a creative day, USE IT.
This is so important! Creative minds are not creative 24/7 unless they’re freaks of nature geniuses like Karl Lagerfeld or something. When you’re feeling creative, don’t hold back. Brainstorm blog topics, write them all down, go out and take pictures, or just start writing.
Ugh. This is so boring and overused. But it’s overused because it’s true! There are so many blogs out there now that you have to figure out what sets you apart. And – most importantly – you have to know yourself. I am not a fashion blogger. I’m just not. I like sharing outfits every now and then, but it’s not me. I’m an excessive coffee drinker slash foodie slash wellness guinea pig. And once I embraced that side of myself, I started seeing growth because I was being true to who I really was.
Find your brand and stick with it.
This concept was completely foreign to me, and it has taken me a lot of time to really figure it out. But read your work or look at your work. Figure out what your “voice” sounds like. Look at the pictures you’ve taken. Do you use similar filters? Do they have a color scheme? Every time you post, there should be some type of consistency that shows your readers or Insta followers that it belongs to YOU. I like to think that you guys could read something I wrote somewhere totally different and think, that sounds like TWB! Or see a picture and think, that looks like a TWB pic! And that is what branding is.
Don’t expect overnight success.
It doesn’t exist. It won’t happen. A quote I love? “Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle.” The bloggers with thousands of followers that you admire? They’ve been doing this for years. Don’t let yourself get down if it takes awhile! They probably started out the same way you did! Envision yourself in 5 years – how great could your blog be if you practiced it every day for 5 freakin’ years?! You could be right there with them!
So tell me… what drives YOU?
Even if you’re not a blogger, what are you passionate about? What drives you to do it every day?
Have you ever wanted to start a blog? What would you blog about?
Tell me everything!!! I seriously want to know! Comment, text me, tweet me (I think I have 3 followers), write me a message in a bottle, I don’t care! I just want to know your thoughts 🙂
I will be back Monday with some pics from the weekend – I have this perfect fall dress that I’m DYING to share (even though I just swore I wasn’t a fashion blogger – LOL!) I will see you then! Xo.