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5 things I learned from 30 consecutive days of blogging
Yesterday was my 30th consecutive day of blogging! Yay! I did it!
Phew, that month went by really fast.
There were a couple of close calls where I just didn't feel like blogging or forgot to write until late in the day. But I got over those hurdles and made it to the end.
So what did I learn over the last 30 days?
1) Objectives > Goals
Many people think the terms "goals" and "objectives" are interchangeable, but there is a very distinct and important difference.
When January 1st comes around each year, many people make a New Year's resolution to lose weight. That's a goal.
An objective would be to lose five pounds by the end of March.
See the difference?
A goal is kind of an overarching intention and is a bit more nebulous. An objective is specific, measurable, usually involves a timeline, and leads to the achievement of the goal.
If I had set a goal for this experiment, it would have been to blog more often.
Instead, I set an objective to blog for 30 days straight.
I learned that setting an objective is much more powerful and motivating than simply setting a goal.
2) Understand why you're doing something
If you have a true understanding of why you're doing something, you're more likely to stick with it and attain your objective.
The main reason why I did this experiment is to try to develop a habit of blogging.
I knew there were parts of personal blogging that I didn't like, such as writing a super-long posts, doing lots of research, and searching for images.
All of these aspects of blogging are very important to engage readers and increase page views, Likes, and shares.
But increasing page views, Likes, and shares wasn't why I was running this experiment. I wanted to see if blogging could become a habit.
So I largely took those components out of the blogging process. If I had kept them in, it would have been much more difficult for me to blog for 30 consecutive days, and I may not have made it to the end.
Focusing on why you're doing something can give you a lot of clarity and help you achieve your goals and objectives.
3) Pressure makes diamonds
The pressure that comes along with setting and working towards an objective can be high.
And the fact that I openly shared my objective of blogging for 30 consecutive days with the world made that pressure on me that much greater. I had friends, family, and colleagues rooting for me and motivating me to get it done, which was awesome.
I'm not saying that my blog posts were diamonds, not at all. More like Cubic Zirconias.
All I'm saying is that by openly stating your objectives to one person or many, you put a lot more pressure on yourself and hold yourself accountable to reach that objective.
And that's a powerful thing.
4) It takes a while for something to become a habit
After 30 days, blogging still isn't a habit for me. It has definitely become a bigger part of my psyche, but it's not something that I run to do everyday.
I'm not sure how long it will take to become a habit, or if it will ever become one at all.
5) Consistency is so important
Consistency is the key to growth.
Doing something everyday makes you better at it.
Ensuring a task is part of your everyday process is crucial to improving.
The rewards will come if you stick to something for the long term.
Repetition and consistency is so, so important.
Here is how my metrics improved over the last 30 days, compared to the prior 30 days, on the platforms on which I publish my posts:
mikewchan.com - unique visitors up 9%, visits up 20%, and page views up 36%
Medium - views up 1211%, reads up 867%, Recommends up 775%
LinkedIn - page vies up 11,587%, Likes (497) and Comments (136) up infinitely, since I didn't get any from Jan 14-Feb 14. BTW, it's frickin tedious getting these stats from LinkedIn.
Of course, these metrics improved because of the sheer volume of content I put out in the last 30 days compared to the prior period. But that's part of the game, and it's a good thing.
I'm going to keep on keeping on. I'm going to attempt to continue to blog everyday.
I'm not so concerned about keeping the streak alive, though. I just want to keep doing it, as I've enjoyed myself and the feedback that I've received over the past month.
To tell the truth, blogging on the weekends is very tough, so I might drop writing on Saturdays and Sunday and just blog during the week. We'll see.
I'm also going to slowly incorporate some of the aspects that I didn't like about blogging back into the process to see how that feels.
Bottom line is that I've enjoyed this experiment and I've learned a lot about myself during the process.
Thanks for coming along for the ride!
This is day 31 of my experiment to blog for 30 consecutive days.