This blog, the attempt to write everyday (though I'm slowing down) has always been an experiment. Sure, I ran the successful blogger's narrative in the back of my head somewhere: "I just wrote for a long time and then one post ended up going viral and now everything I write is treated like gold." But for the most part this has been a process of finding my voice, slowly growing some semblance of an audience, and finding what I like to write about.
There have been some small successes in terms of entries that have caught on. I've learned some simple ways to market. And I think I've gained a better perspective both on what I like to write about and what people like to read about.
I'm not there yet. I still haven't sat down to do any sort of real planning for this blog. I haven't dedicated myself to a set of clear topics that I can continue to go deeper into. This blog lacks focus and real direction.
But I am getting clarity. I am still enjoying writing, even though I committed to everyday for a year and yet there are now days when I don't blog.
I guess I write this as a motivator to myself and to you, should you read this. There can be so many things that hold you back from attempting to follow through on that idea you have in your head. How many times have you told yourself "I should try to ________" or told a friend "It would be fun to ________"? What is holding you back from taking that very first step? The reasons, I'm sure can be countless.
"I don't know how to start a blog."
"I don't know what I'd write about."
"I don't have enough money for that business."
"I don't think I'll be any good."
"What if it sucks?"
"What if I fail?"
I'm sure there are more. However, none of these are first step issues. Let me clear: Having the end in mind is a good thing. Picturing a thriving blog or business or whatever is important, but only if it allows you to reverse engineer back to step one. If, for any reason, you start with that end-view, but then only think of all the doubts, questions, concerns, and made-up scenarios, then scrap the end and just start with the first step.
You're allowed to make mistakes. You're allowed to struggle through figuring it out. You are even allowed to fail. They are all opportunities to learn. Those who don't learn are the ones who should worry.