I know what you’re thinking. You blog, but you don’t think you’re a real blogger.
I mean, there’s this huge gap between the content you produce and the content of the bloggers you admire. They’re professionals, and you’re just another blogger out of a hundred million or so.
What you don’t know is that even the bloggers you look up to felt the same way. They all had to go from zero to hero, the were all terrified to face the blank page of a new blog post. Most of them still are.
So, what makes the difference?
Read on to find out.
I’ve made friends, worked with, and mentored a lot of bloggers over the years. And, the bitter truth, many have stopped writing completely. They fell prey to self-doubt or laziness or listened to those who hate their words. They became selfish, impatient, insecure.
This is the case for most bloggers out there. So much so that every once in a while someone will comment on a new post of mine something along the lines of, “Wow! You’re still blogging after all these years.”
What choice do I have? I’ve decided to become more than just another blogger. I’ve decided to become the blogger.
April marks eight years worth of time I’ve spent blogging. I started blogging, and I knew that I’d never, ever, ever give up. That’s the secret. What can I say? I love to blog. It’s fun. It should be fun.
See your problem? You’re dabbling. You show up only when you feel like it. You’re soft. You don’t want to do the work. That’s it.
Becoming a real blogger simply means you’re done being inconsistent, insecure, unreliable. You go 100% all the time. Because of this, your success in the blogging world feels inevitable. You feel like an unstoppable force.
Most bloggers quit within their first year because most bloggers are cry babies. They don’t want to do the work so they play the victim.
Anyone can blog. For a few months at least. And they all have a book in them. But is it a good book? Is it worth reading, worth buying?
Ask yourself the same question about your blog?
Not sure what to answer?
Show up and punch those damn keys.
The more you work on becoming a real blogger, the more clarity of purpose you will develop.
Passion and purpose are not archaeological digs, but rather architectural builds. You work on the every single day.
You’ve got to show up no matter what.
You’d think your best work comes when you’re in a great mood, the coffee buzz hits you just right, and the ideas come to you one after another. Wrong. The work you do when you’re not feeling it defines you as a blogger. The words you write when you’d much rather be doing anything else are the foundation that will enable you to build a successful blog.
Have you ever gone to the gym when you didn’t feel like it? At first, you feel like going hime, but ten minutes in the adrenaline starts to kick in. By the end, you feel fantastic. As you walk out of the gym, you realize that you don’t regret it. Not one bit.
As a matter of fact, looking back, there’s never a single workout that you regret.
This can happen with blogging, but only if you show up.
And, yes, I know. Showing up when you don’t feel like it is hard. Especially when no one seems to be giving a damn about it. Writing blog posts nobody will ever read is hard. But showing up is the only way through.
I often feel like this myself. I find myself hesitating. I find myself overcome with negative emotions. It’s no longer dread, but rather this complacency: I can do the work tomorrow.
But I’ve also come to know that if I tell myself that I can get it done tomorrow, I’ve already lost. Tomorrow’s too late for someone who’s serious about blogging.
I’ve written hundreds of blog posts about all the tips and tricks to help you succeed as a blogger, but not one of them will work if you don’t show up.
As a matter of fact, I’d love it if you were to stop reading this blog post right now and start punching those damn keys, because I’d rather you create work than consume it.
Don’t just talk the talk.
Most bloggers want others to invest in them, but they never invest in themselves.
You want to make money from your blogging, right? You want people to buy your books, products, or services, don’t you?
How much money do you invest in your blogging?
Do you have your own domain? Do you have an email service provider? Have you taken any online courses? Have you hired a coach? Taken a master class?
Most people talk a good talk. But that’s it. They say they want it, but don’t really want it. They kind of want it; kind of want the perks that come with the struggle, but don’t want the struggle.
Investing in yourself has many benefits. First, when you put your money where your mouth is, you take yourself more seriously. If you invest in an online course, you’re going to read the damn thing until you figure out at least a few ways to stand out as a blogger.
Secondly, if you don’t invest in other people, why expect others to want to invest in you? If you don’t support others in your niche, why should anyone else buy your products and services? If you don’t take any courses or classes, why should anyone want to join yours?
If you don’t spend money on your education or to support other bloggers, you can’t empathize with your audience, because you know nothing other than trying to get free stuff. Then, subconsciously, your own behavior will betray you because you’ll expect others to do the same to you.
The same goes for looking for shortcuts, thinking that others got lucky, or thinking there’s some scheme you’re simply not aware of.
As you think, so shall you become.
I remember having fifty readers. The thought of having a thousand seemed unrealistic at the time. I have over 180,000 now.
Each time I accomplish something new, I’m reminded of the fact my self-doubt is the one that’s unrealistic, that impossible is oftentimes far more possible than what the critic within tries to tell me.
The truth is that if someone else has done it, you can too. We’re all human. And we all possess skills that we have developed in time. That’s it.
But work long enough at your skills, it will seem like you’re naturally talented to those who are just starting out. It looks like magic, when it’s just hard freaking work.
Eight years into the game, and I look back on things I once thought were impossible but find trivial now: I used to think it impossible to work on more than one blog, I used to think it impossible to blog every single day.
Eight years into the game, I can write 1,000 words in 30 minutes. It used to take me two days when I first started out.
I now earn in 90 days what I earned in my first year and a half of blogging.
I too was once a brand new blogger with an audience of zero, scared out of my mind, and thought building a successful blog was out of my reach.
But I loved it. I knew it was what I wanted to do. I wanted to get it done. I wanted to stop daydreaming about it, and punch those damn keys.
Because you know what’s funny? When you do the work, your fear and self-doubt subside. The inner critic becomes like a weak echo.
I am writing these words because I know how you feel. I also know what’s on the other side of fear, of procrastination, of self-doubt: experiences you’ll never forget like seeing your name on the cover of a book, checking your stats to see thousands of people took time out of their day to read your work, and feeling the euphoria of knowing you finished something.
You don’t need thousands of people reading your blog to be a real blogger. In fact, you don’t even need anyone to read your blog to be a real blogger.
All you need to do is decide that you’re a real blogger and you are. Change your mindset, and you change your life. It’s as simple as that.