1. Think big.
I really have to start living the the way I’ve come to blog. On unsure terrain in those early days, I put out safe posts, ones within my interests. On homeschooling, for example. I felt assured I was “doing the right thing” looking like other bloggers. But gradually, I began to tap deeper into the ideas that really grabbed me. Last year, blogging stopped being a train of posts I shot out one at a time wondering what I’d write about next. Rather than post linearly, I started architecting this blog, figuring out how many floors (that is, topics) I would erect in the next six months, going backward to furnish the rooms (the posts for each topic). The blueprinting gave me direction, control, and purpose. But I didn’t stay bound to these plans. Plenty of posts arose from whimsy and those moments where life happen.
2. Stay flexible.
Stay tuned to your hot topics and see what you can do with them. Moving into 2014, I watched the post on Black Santa generate enthusiastic discussion and was reminded that everyone has something to say about race. It is, after all, as close to home as you can get. So I bit the bullet and launched the ambitious Race Around the World. The cultural tapestry we pieced together those 80 days gave way to more series. On class, identity, belonging, guilt, shame, money, opportunity, hope.
3. Stay happily discontent whether it’s wanting more out of your content or your subscriber base.
We never arrive, do we? And success, especially in cyberland, is an endless stretch of horizon. A word on unfollows. I’ve seen funny posts with bloggers screeching that they lost three followers. I value every reader, especially the active supporters, but feel dependent on none. You will get unfollows. It’s the ease and democracy of blogosphere where people come and go. Don’t pin desperate hopes on anyone. Set your sights higher, and higher still. I tend not to reach out to readers who seemed to have stepped away. I don’t want to obligate them to visit if they’ve moved on, though I often discover life pulled them away for a season. Or WordPress wiped me off their radar, an unfortunate glitch in our system.
4. Don’t play it safe.
The empty post page is a blank check I write myself. Create opportunity, for yourself as well as others, which can birth more opportunities. Twenty-two months ago I never imagined I’d host a forum where a worldwide community of artists and thinkers could share their history, fears, and dreams. Blogs are a safe place to test the boundaries that in life you may not be able to play with. Experiment, try new projects. You’re limited only by fear and imagination. Staying static is like painting your whole blog one color and keeping it that way.
5. Remember how small you are in blogging and in life.
There’s always someone with more readers, someone faster, smarter, more talented and savvy. You’re not all that, and neither am I. That’s why I try to keep it real. For all the rewriting I do here, I don’t want to end up editing my image when you’re coming to me with a level of trust in my honesty.
6. Know how big you can be.
Not only are quantity and quality not mutually exclusive, they can feed one another. Have you thought about why it is you want to grow your readership? The answer can be more meaningful and fulfilling than your own popularity, your ego. There is a satisfaction that comes from resonating with a larger crowd, degrees of insight and perspective a larger following can offer. You expand possibilities for yourself, viewers, and your community.
7. Know why you’re here.
I got chills watching him carve in the sky the triple somersault and half-twist before slipping clean into the water. Last summer, the commentator said of Gary Hunt who was known for his inventive cliff diving, “He knows exactly why he’s in the air.” The power, the grace. The hours and hours Hunt devoted in the search for his best self. In the writing, dreaming, collaborating, I’m exploring my capacity as an artist and a community builder. I create something bigger than me, something that extends beyond the bounds of my own life. The extraordinary discussions, synergy, stats were not my goals but the unexpected payoff of one simple purpose: excellence. I’ll never be a medalist but my blog is where I test my reach, and enjoy visible and lasting rewards for the time I put in. Know why you’re in the air and why you want to get there. Doesn’t have to be serious or profound but if you don’t know why you’re here, we don’t either.
367 thoughts on “Seven Mental Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers”
Points that are carefully considered and well thought through. A beautifully written post.
I think this post hit home on many levels for me. I’m glad you posted this and my favourite part was number seven. I started my blog with a specific purpose, and amongst the noise of the world, sometimes I forget and sometimes doubt that my site will do anything to anyone! Your posts have inspired me and some have made me laugh (very important) and I hope I can do the same with mine site 🙂
Such thoughtful feedback, Jenny. It is neat hearing the back story of bloggers. I enjoy every visit, it’s just this wee obstacle called time. You know I learn a lot over there. Stay on course. =) (Been thinking of you.)
Reblogged this on The Linden Chronicles: The Wolf's Moon by Patrick Jones and commented:
Excellent suggestions for the highly effective blogger from A Holistic Journey Blog by Holistic Wayfarer. Very interesting “About Me” page as well!
How nice of you, Patrick. And thank you for the follow. Welcome!
Why DO we have that glitch where people follow off your Reader? It happens all the time to me and seems like it’s an easy fix for WordPress? Putting that aside, — this post is like prime rib at a buffet — so satisfying & filling but yet you continue to go back for seconds. I will definitely reread this many times because there’s so much here. But your closing line is my dessert for tonight. “…if you don’t know why you’re here, we don’t either.” Perfect. No whip cream or sprinkles necessary.
You’re something *shaking head*. You and your (awesome) metaphors.
Thanks, Mary. =)
Love it…… those mental habits are expandable to achieving your goals, reaching your full potential, becoming successful in life. Know how big you can be…. is my favourite
Great to hear how you processed this. Thanks.
Hello, thank you for a wonderful post. I especially like the first point, about thinking big. It is essential to all our writing efforts.
Appreciate your letting me know..and following. =) Welcome to A Holistic Journey.
Sometimes I post , then another follower takes my idea and use for something else or changes the meaning around. I feel like they are trying to bring the follow. But, still it’s almost like they stealing the limelight.
Thanks for your insight in advance.
I grumbled at a blogger (with a huge following) that he’d post on the very topics I had planned – and we share many followers. =) Just goes to show you there is nothing new under the sun. Say it your own way.
Thank you, could not really resent one for stealing the show.
Great advice for a newbie (like myself) or a seasoned blogger alike.
Thanks for reading and connecting. =) Glad you liked.
Hi, interesting and inspiring post for a beginner such as myself. The first point is what led me to blogging.
Great. Thanks for letting me know. =)
I appreciate the follow, AB.
Very good and thought provoking points. Glad I didn’t miss this one. 🙂
I had no idea horses could read… oh wait I recognize that horse.
Inspiring post. Needed this :). Thank you so much for the follow!
Wonderful. May I ask which point struck you most? =) And ditto on the follow.
This has given me much to think about. And thanks for the like at Lori Notes–
Great. Which part struck? =)
I believe I can flyyyyyyyyyyyy! I believe I can touch the skyyyyyyyyyy! lmao 🙂
You kook. (Gosh, that song annoyed me. The whole self-esteem scratch.)
I think about it every night and day! Spread my wings and flyyyyy awayyyyyy.
You have too much time on your hands since WP grabbed you by the —.
It’s a lil longer than that…
Gagging on my breakfast. Please — don’t make me censor this thread. I’ve been dancing beyond the PG-13 here as is.
Please don’t take this the wrong way or anything, but I forgot how I stumbled upon your blog and I just started to read this post. It was interesting, strong and bold. I loved every point I read and your experiences about each one. This post is inspiring to me and should be to all bloggers. So, I wanted to say thank you for writing this up and letting me read this 🙂 I hope you have a great day.
LOL I talk with many bloggers everyday and can’t recall how I met each. I appreciate the sweet, thoughtful feedback.
Onward and upward!
Great tips. Definitely thought-provoking. Thanks for giving us all some interesting ideas to consider with our blogging!
Glad you liked! Thanks.
Thanks for helping us all keep it in perspective.
Glad you liked, Ellen. Thanks for taking a moment.
Wow, thank you so much for great tips and advice – I agree with all the points that you mentioned! They are great advice!
Glad this was helpful. I appreciate the follow, Indah. Welcome! =)
I agree. I love your blog. A positive and good journey. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, life and writing.
How sweet, John. Thank you for taking a moment here and for the read today.
You are welcome.
Reblogged this on Stellham´s Blog.
Happily discontent is something I believe in with me. I love the way you put it.
So glad to know. =) Thanks for sharing!
I am a brand new blogger so I found this post to be very helpful. Thank you for sharing it.
Happy to know. Thanks for connecting. =) Welcome to blogosphere!
This is helpful advice as I re-begin my blogging journey. Very insightful! Thank you and you have a new follower, here. 🙂
So nice of you to connect, Eric. Thanks for letting me know…and I appreciate the follow. WELCOME!
“You’re limited only by fear and your imagination”. You hit the nail on the head. It’s so true. When we are fearful, we limit ourselves to what we can do. We really don’t know what we are capable of unless we get out of our comfort zone. Thanks for sharing these great tips. Have a lovely weekend.
Glad this post spoke to you, Anna. Looking fwd to how you apply this. =)
I think all of what you listed spoke to me. It took me a while to leave a comment because they left me speechless and they’re thought provoking. It’s not easy to leave your comfort zone, especially if you once experienced bullying. I get choked up just mentioning the word. It took so much courage to finally do what I love. I started blogging and interact with people even though I am fearful because my writing is not that great. The bullying is always in the back of my head. It’s something I need to get over with. Anyway, thanks for the response and for visiting my blog and liking my post. I wish you well.
Oh Anna, how terrible. Goodness…cyberbullying, huh? Though my experience on WPress has for the most part been breathtakingly wonderful, I hAve come across a few bloggers who don’t know what it means to disagree respectfully. They name-call and will say anything to feel they are right. The saddest thing. Do NOT give that person the power he wanted over you. That is done and over with. You will meet whatever challenges lie ahead (and the chances on the bullying really are slim) but as long as the sun shines on you today, you live and write and don’t let anyone take a piece of your breath this day. Own your writing.
The bullying happened a long time ago. But, I believe it will never end. I think some people are just ignorant and refused to accept that they are not the only people in this planet. If only people will treat others the way they want to be treated, this world will be a much better place. I was called an idiot and all kinds of names and told to go back to my country etc…I think it is sad that you are judged by the color of your skin and how smart you are. For sure, try speaking my language and see if you can utter a sentence or two. The English language is so complex. One word has different meanings. In blogging world, if you don’t write well, it’s pretty much telling you to forget about blogging. I love Albert Einstein’s quote, ‘Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.’ Now that’s inspiring! Thank you for all the great advice. It’s very much appreciated. Best wishes to you, Diana.
Remember, people like that have a very fragile ego to protect. They have to bash others to be able to feel good about themselves. I bet that person’s forgotten about you – in the lineup of other victims since. Move on. Seize the gift of each new day, Anna.
Yes, I agree. Thanks for all the words of wisdom. I truly appreciate them. Have a blessed Sunday, Diana. 🙂
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Thank you. =)
Reblogged this on Yin Yang Tao and commented:
Holistic Wayfarer shows some tremendous insight here while reflecting on a subject that we all share a common interest in!
Thanks. Glad you enjoyed. =)
I’m new to blogging, so posts like this are so helpful! Thanks for posting your blogging wisom!
That was exactly the purpose, to be of help. I appreciate all the support, Chelsea. Happy blogging. =)
I’m less than a year old in the blogosphere, therefore this was really very helpful. Thank you for sharing! All the best, Annabel
Very glad to hear. Beautiful blog you have going. =)
Thank you for that. You’ve just made my day!
=) I think that’s largely what blogging should be about. Putting out stepping stones or making a small gesture of encouragement.
Its so amazingly well knitted post !!! and an eye-opener for a newbie….. Remember how small you are – in blogging and life…. amazing !!! Cheers 🙂
Appreciate your letting me know what zinged you. =)
Reblogged this on greena.
Thanks. Glad you enjoyed. =)
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I’ve been writing for several years just to get things off my mind, and to be able to remember what life has been like, but your #1 think big item makes me think it’s time for more of a plan. Thanks for stimulating thought and suggesting a direction.
Wonderful, Shirley! Thank you so much for letting me know how this post spoke to you.
Reblogged this on rollingblogger and commented:
Originally posted on holisticwayfarer.com this has amazing insights into creating a successful blog.
Glad you enjoyed. Thanks.
Thanks for stopping by my blog and sharing this post link with me!! I have days where I layout a blue print and then I completely go off track. I certainly have a lot of rooms to furnish as I tend to jump from topic to topic depending on where my thoughts are at for the day. I think that long term (after some serious furnishing attempts) it might all pay off.
I haven’t worried about keeping to a topic. I think that while defining a niche could be helpful, it could on the flip side be limiting. What is more important is the value of each post and the way it is written. I appreciate the follow, SA. =) And I have more posts on successful blogging – see sidebar – if they interest any.
“Staying static is like painting your blog one colour and keeping it that way.” That’s a really nice thought you’ve put out there, inspired me, it did! 🙂 Thanks for writing this.
Appreciate your letting me know what struck you. I do my best to visit everyone back. As you can see, that can take me a while.
These guides to successful blogging are worth revisiting, especially when the “well” of ideas seems to be (temporarily) dry. Thank you for liking my blog post. I appreciate it when not only the newest posts receive attention and that past experiences are “like”worthy!
its frightening how small I am in life and in writing but its delightful how big I can be with such inspiration,,,,
=) Thx for the support.
It’s exhilarating to write something like this and having the certainty in your heart, as you go about it, that you are not only serving as a guide, instructor for others, but also reasserting acclimations. Solidifying the progression of learning and direction. Great work, thanks again.
Again, so thoughtful of you to reflect back to the writer. Glad you enjoyed it.
Very pragmatic and yet leaving the mastery of writing to be coherently heard. Blog writing is very therapeutic for me. I am not bothered what I write and to whom I write ….I try to defy my cultured self and also desecrate the voice of language into self expressive creation. Your article is very encouraging and informative. Anand Bose from Kerala.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts and artistic journey.
One of the bloggers’ perks is to come across such post full of substance! I’m so encouraged. I’m seriously pondering on Points 1 & 7. A nudge of reminder for me as well as a boost of confidence.
Thanks for your comments on ‘The Book Shelter’ post. it always humbles me when gifted writers and bloggers stumble upon my blog 🙂
I’ll visit you again soon!
You are limited only by imagination and fear. =) Appreciate the kind word and feedback.
Thanks too 🙂
Well done. I will bookmark this and refer back, often. Thank you.
Great. Thanks for letting me know, Lisa. =)
Your posts are witty, interesting and pleasure to read. Write on!
=) Thank you for the great feedback.
This is super beautiful, thank you. Perfect timing … as I’m at a point in my life of taking a step up and opening to what’s next for me. Many blessings … and good to connect with you! ❤
Great to hear this was timely. =) Thx for letting me know and all the best.
You too! Thanks 💜
Perfect timing for me to read this blog. #1+#3+#5 stood out to me. Being new to this whole thing and trying to figure out the direction to go is not easy. Your post has hit me in a very good way. Thank you
Excellent. That’s what it’s there for!
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What a lovely intro. Thank you so much for sharing this. =0