Have you ever gone back and read your older posts and cringed? You have grown as a writer and a blogger and you can see how those posts could have been better.
But how can we make sure that we are continuing to grow and become the best bloggers we can be? How can we not get stuck in writing ruts?
Here are five tips I use to keep moving forward as a mom blogger and writer:
1. Read More
It is so easy to stop reading other writers and bloggers when we get too busy with our own work.
Mom bloggers are busy people. We are wearing so many hats, taking time out to read sometimes seems impossible.
But there is nothing more important to keeping your inspiration and your connection to the community thriving than reading and participating in the blogosphere. As I wrote on Babble’s Social Media and Technology Blog, MomCrunch, in a post called, “Why You Can’t Stop Reading Blogs,” time spent reading blogs is not wasted, it is invested.
2. Write More
Writing daily keeps a writer’s mind “in shape.” It is amazing how quickly we can fall out of our writing groove when we stop exercising our “writing muscles.”
The best thing about writing more is we don’t run out of ideas, we generate more ideas. Like an athlete training, the more we write, the better we get.
3. Inspire More
There is no question that inspirational posts perform well and resonate with readers — they receive Facebook likes and shares, get stumbled and tweeted — but whether your post is personal or business-related, you can “inspire” your readers.
Pay attention to the posts you see being shared — what turned those posts from ordinary to inspiring? As you write and edit your post, ask yourself how you can inspire your reader. Not every post will have the same inspirational power, but by considering what our reader’s reaction will be to our words, we can help each post have more of an impact.
4. Give More
The key to our success at 5 Minutes for Mom, and the reason we love every day in the blogging community, is our commitment to helping others succeed. The inspiration behind 5 Minutes for Mom was to promote the online mom community and help other women find success online. But that altruistic goal has ended up helping us grow.
As I was writing this post, I phoned my good friend Nadia Carriere of Child Mode for some feedback. When I hung up the phone, I said to my son who was watching TV next to me, “I love my friends!” My friendship with Nadia is a perfect example of how helping one another freely, not keeping score but truly wanting to help the other, can enhance our lives.
I have so many incredible friends in the mom blog community, friends who give to each other because giving makes us better people, let alone better bloggers.
5. Rest More
I am a napper. Cursed with a wicked sleep disorder, I do not fall asleep easily. I also prefer to work late into the night when there are no distractions, so I rely on naps to keep from dropping dead.
But, the truth is, napping is sometimes the most productive thing I can do as a writer. First, when my mind is weary and weak, a nap can refresh me and give me a “new day.” But second, and even more importantly, I usually get my best ideas when I lie down and try to quiet my mind to fall asleep.
Remember that sleep disorder? Well, falling asleep takes a long time day or night, so I have time to rest and let my mind wander creatively down paths I was too busy to pursue when I was working.
The Ultimate Blog Party, Tackle it Tuesday, even this blog post, were developed as I lay in my bed trying to fall asleep. Yes, I can get too excited by an idea to actually have the nap — I often end up back at my desk furiously plotting out my idea instead of sleeping. (Hint: Keep a notepad by your bed.)
If you are feeling too exhausted to think, take a break. Go for a walk, have a nap, put on some music and dance with your kids, or take some time to quiet your mind in prayer or meditation. You will be amazed how valuable that break really is.
Blogging is Work
Writing is hard work. Sometimes the words slip effortlessly into our minds, easily forming into inspired pieces. But more often, we have to “put our backs into it.” However, the more we commit to our jobs as writers and bloggers, the more we will benefit and grow.
How do you keep yourself motivated and growing as a writer and blogger? Are you surprised by how far you have come from your earlier days blogging?
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Written by Janice Croze, co-founder of 5 Minutes for Mom.