fall in love again.

My post for today is a bit out of the ordinary, but I hope you'll bear with me. It's been brewing for long enough ;) I can hardly believe it, but nearly six months have past since I had my first polish consultation this past spring. It's been amazing to meet with fabulous bloggers {over Skype and email} to help them craft their niché in the blogosphere. Though I didn't major in blogging during my years at Georgetown, I would like to think I've learned quite a bit by trial and error. If there's one thing I've encountered in recent consults, it's a new fatigue setting in. Bloggers are getting caught up in the whirlwind and I see their joy in blogging fading, which is exactly the reason behind my post today.

Here are six {by no means fool-proof} tips on how to fall in love with blogging (again)...
1) Plain and simple: you get out of blogging what you put into it. Your blogging experience won't be as rich or as rewarding as it should be if you're not actively "participating" in your blog. If you put up a post and don't share it on any social media, you're not engaging with anyone or bringing anyone to your blog. I'm a huge advocate for social media, though I don't encourage the overshare ;)

2) Leave genuine comments, not ones which say "great post--I'll follow you if you'll follow me". I'll admit that my time is in short supply these days and doesn't often include commenting. However, it doesn't mean I don't read, appreciate, and cherish each one you leave. By leaving generic comments, you invite people who will leave the same kind of comments for you. Blogging is all about community. {Quite frankly, a community based on the number of comments and followers is a pretty petty one. I could write an entire post on this topic alone, but I'll leave it at that for today.}

3) If you have a question, ask it. I get emails from readers asking how to participate in Friday's Fancies, how to make collages, and countless other topics. I admire them for asking because it takes guts to put yourself out there and admit you don't know something. Again, I'll harken back to the fact that blogging is a community and we're here to help one another--not compete. If you're in it for the latter, it's not cool and it hurts the rest of us. 

4) In my first six or eight months of blogging, I felt slightly like I'd reverted back to seventh grade. It was all about who you knew and where you stacked up. What I'm alluding to is this: don't try to fit in with the crowd and do your best to stand out. Sure, you may see certain bloggers gaining steam for a particular type of post they're doing. {Great for them}! Try to find your own spin and create your own steam engine. Though imitation is absolutely a form of flattery, the fact that so many blog posts look the same is a bit frightening. I just wish I was brave enough to follow this same advice when I was twelve years old with frizzy hair and braces.

5) I've said it once and I'll say it again: don't get bogged down by the numbers. It is fun to celebrate little victories {like hitting 50 followers or getting comments in the double digits}, but for heaven's sake, please don't define a good day by your stats. Enjoy these little celebrations in the quiet of your home ;) I have good days and I have bad stat days, but in all reality, my "bad" days pale in comparison to the awful days of people in the midst of life crises. 

6) Blog for you and not for anyone else. With each and every post I share on {long distance loving}, I spend a good deal of time prepping it for the "world" to see. I will never post about something I don't sincerely like. I may use promotional links for some posts, but they're all for products I truly wish I had in my closet or home. Make blogging for yourself your mantra. Your posts will be better for it--and your readers will thank you.
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For those of you who've made it this far, thank you. This list is fluid--and I want your additions! Please understand these suggestions weren't meant to rock the boat, only to make the blog world a friendlier and happier place. I desperately want this community to continue for years to come--but we all need to be on a similar wavelength to make that happen ;) Thanks again for reading.


P.S. If you want me to help you polish your own blog, all you need to do is email me. I may not be a master, but I absolutely care about making the blogosphere a better place and would love to be in your corner!

41 comments:

  1. This is a really great post. After some time blogging, I started to feel like it was an obligation and not something I loved to do. This was so upsetting to me! Until I realized that I wasn't writing about what I really love -- I was limiting myself. And once I took off the limits, I soared; and since then, I have loved every minute! :-)

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  2. great tips {AV} -- thank you for sharing them and i totally agree about blogging for yourself :) xx

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  3. I so needed to hear this today. As my blog has become a bit more - dare I say it? - polished, it's lost some of the fun that came with spontaneity. Thanks for the reminders!

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  4. Great reminders! I get so sick of always hearing bloggers talk about numbers, followers, comments, etc.

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  5. This is exactly what I needed to read today :)

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  6. Thank you for this and great tips! I think it is so important to remember to not get bogged down by it all. I have to keep reminding myself of that and also to be doing it for myself.

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  7. These are great, genuine tips. I needed this one today! :) I sometimes forget to blog for myself rather than everyone else.

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  8. A few months ago, I went througha period when I was like why do this? It takes so much time. So instead of trying to blog Sunday through Friday (and not having time to actually live my life), I decided to take it easy this summer and just post fewer but better quality posts. I feel better, more invigorated, and I don't feel guilty on those days when I don't post. Blogging is supposed to be FUN!!

    http://lachapstickfanatique.blogspot.com

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  9. Great advice! I could not agree more. As the writer of a smaller blog, sometimes I feel frustrated, but then I count how many genuine friends I have made through blogging & the joy that I get from it. I am so grateful for that & it's all I need.
    xoxo,
    Leigh

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  10. Fabulous advice my friend and advice I needed to read today! I hope you are doing well!

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  11. Thanks for the encouragement, girl! These are great tips and good reminders. Sometimes it's hard to not be bogged down about stats, but you're right to not let it make or break your day... all that will do is take wind out of your sails. Thanks for the insight! xo

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  12. Love this! Great motivation for my Wednesday :)

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  13. I always love your posts! Your blog was truly one of the first reasons I started blogging when Tyler and I did long distance. I would check it every day before I realized you could "follow" and blog, and I am so glad there are sincere bloggers out there who truly care!! I could care less about the numbers and followers and sponsors, I care about the friends I have made the the genuine interest people have in my blog that is an "outlet" for me!

    xoxo

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  14. Great ideas and thoughts! Thank you.

    For number one, which media outlets do you use? I share on twitter but am I little nervous to share on facebook for some strange reason.

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  15. This is a really great set of tips - especially for a newcomer like me. It's so easy to get discouraged and want to give up, but this definitely helps me take a step back and put it all into perspective :)

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  16. Thank you for your wonderful advice! As a new blogger (going on 2 months now), I've already been slightly jaded by the blogging community. I've felt like people only look at/comment on my posts because I've left on a comment on theirs. However, I've learned that it's the really sincere and genuine compliments about my blog that I've gotten out of the blue that really matter to me. Thank you for reminding me that this is a community, and that taking a different perspective on things can help better myself and my blog. You're absolutely right that we should write about what we love and not what we think will get the most page views.

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  17. If anyone is on the fence, I definitely recommend {AV}'s blog polishing service! It's absolutely worth it.

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  18. Such wonderful advice, thank you! I was feeling down yesterday because I "lost a follower" and this definitely reminded me that it so doesn't matter ha!! Thanks, love! xoxo

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  19. You made so many wonderful points here. I completely agree 100% with each. I most definitely agree with, "Leave genuine comments." Those are how you build a relationship with fellow bloggers and network, and they can make all the difference in how I write my own entries!

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  20. Great tips! I used to check my analytics every day and now I do it every few days. Most bloggers who get hundreds of comments are only getting "nice post" comments of people promoting their own blogs.

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  21. I really love this post AV! All great tips, especially the don't try to fit in bit. I rarely hop on the wagon and just kinda do my own thing... I like to think I've gained the most genuine followers that way.

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  22. Number 6 is so true. You can't do this for anyone else. It really just won't be fun. I'm so glad I've been able to meet you through this lovely blogging world :)

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  23. well said! and I agree with Brittany - {av}'s polished my blog earlier this summer and it was hugely helpful. I highly recommend!

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  24. Brilliant post + great advice Av, especially loved point 4 + 6. Its so easy to fall into the trap of 'following the crowd' but it really is true - the bloggers I admire the most are the ones that are being true to themselves which really shines through each post they put together. I fell into this trap for a while but it's so much more rewarding when you are blogging for yourself and people can geniunely resonate with what you are posting about xx

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  25. Love, love this post, A! Point 6 is spot on.

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  26. Such a great post. It definitely took me awhile to really find myself in blogging, and I still am, since I've been doing it for less than a year. It's funny because I always said I didn't want to do fashion posts, but doing friday's fancies has made me realize how much fun I have doing those style of posts!!!So thank you lady :)

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  27. these are some great tips! I especially believe that you should blog for yourself instead of for someone else - when you go with your guts, the posts are more sincere and eventually more successful!

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  28. thank you! i have found it incredibly hard to get back into blogging once i'm out of it - and lately, i've wanted to get back into it. this is a good reminder of why to blog again :)

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  29. This was great to read as a beginning blogger too! I love the idea of it being a community and blogging for yourself to attract like-minded people! Looking forward to making new friends in the blogosphere :)

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  30. I've read and enjoyed your blog for quite some time but haven't commented until today. I wanted to thank you for writing this post. It came at a much-needed time for me. (:

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  31. such a great post. thanks for reminding me of why I love blogging so much

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  32. Oh av I love you. This is exactly what I needed today-- been reading through IFB and all the controversy going on there and I've just been so discouraged about blogging and this community! You said everything perfectly though, I need to step back and remember why I fell in love with blogging in the first place :)

    ps. Can't wait to see you so soon!

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  33. Wow! This is such a helpful and honest post! Thank you so much for the tips!! I really can relate to number four! I've been blogging a year and a half and still find myself getting caught up in this! Xo

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  34. Wow! This is such a helpful and honest post! Thank you so much for the tips!! I really can relate to number four! I've been blogging a year and a half and still find myself getting caught up in this! Xo

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  35. Thank you for this! This post came at the perfect time for me because, lately, I've failed at making time to blog. I've missed it, but it's taken a back seat to my daily activities, and it's been tough to change that. I'm ready to make my little blog a priority again, and I'll keep these tips in mind. :)

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  36. just stumbled across this post and i love it! such great tips and insights - thanks for sharing with us :)
    tiffany
    www.hydrangeasandhandbags.com

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