So many bloggers start off energetically, buy a domain name and hosting, write a few blog posts and then fizzle out by the 3rd or 6th month mark.
They find it tough to sustain the energy, interest and the passion it takes to be a serious blogger.
You’re not alone, if you’ve done this, by the way.
But how do you stay motivated as a blogger? How do you stay on the blogging bandwagon?
We have both intrinsic and extrinsic motivation that play a role in ensuring we stick with something for a long time.
Here’s the first big truth you need to hear:
It’s nobody’s job to motivate you, other than yourself.
That means if you are on social media, asking people how to stay motivated, stop that right now and read this post.
Motivation tips are of different kinds.
In today’s article, I will talk about ensuring that you rely more on internal motivation than external rewards to keep your blog writing mojo alive and well.
You will develop a blogging routine that is both dependable and enjoyable.
In other words, you will always remain motivated to blog, no matter what your circumstances. Ready?
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- Ask yourself if this is what you want
- Block off time on your calendar
- Pick your blogging goals
- Speak to a Blogging Coach
- Commit to one post a week to begin
- Focus on consistency over volume
- Have an accountability Partner
- Start writing out post ideas
- Work on something blog-related
- Study a course (free/paid)
- Celebrate Tiny wins
- Work smarter; Not harder
- Stop the comparison game
- Write about things that inspire you
- Set aside a day for a complete break from the blog
Ask yourself if this is what you want
I’m going to be super honest with you, right off the bat.
It’s one thing to be keen about blogging. It’s another thing to blog seriously, come what may.
So, even before you dive into the rest of the reasons below, ask yourself this:
Does my Blog have an important place in my life?
A good blog is serious work. It’s fun, definitely!
But it’s also a lot of hard work.
The easy way to answer this question is this:
Would you feel like something is missing from your day or week if you don’t work on your blog?
If the answer is YES, then that’s your first blogging motivation.
Remember: ‘If it’s important to you, you’ll find a way; if not, you’ll find an excuse.’
An even easier tip to answer this question is to buy a motivational poster like this one and put it over your work desk.
This post contains links to the Amazon affiliate program. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. You can read my complete Disclosure policy here.
Read this post for 20 Inspiring Motivational Quotes for Bloggers
Block off time on your calendar
The key to staying motivated with anything is to first build a routine around it.
That means, you don’t wait for inspiration to strike.
You just show up and start doing the grunt work.
And the only way to ensure you do that is to physically pencil that block of time into your calendar.
Invest in a good planner or bullet journal or a nice, large wall planner where you can block off 2 hours a day for your blog.
Does a two-hour block seem too long?
Fine, start with 30 minutes each day. Trust me. This is doable!
At that allotted time, turn off your phone, shut the door and settle down to work on your blog.
Don’t worry about inspiration. Just start writing. The rest will follow naturally.
Unsure about how to do time blocking? Here are super simple tips to get you started on managing your time.
Pick your blogging goals
Do you have goals for your blog?
For example, do you want more traffic for your content?
Get into an ad network?
Make money through affiliate marketing?
Goals are important if you want to stay focused on something like blogging.
Without a goal you’d just be blogging on a whim. Don’t do that.
Set SMART goals and keep them easy to execute.
The clearer your goal, the more likely it is that you will be motivated to stick with it.
If you’re completely clueless about goal setting, start with this post on how to set 90 Day Blogging Goals
Speak to a Blogging Coach
A blogging coach is a great investment to make if it means it will get you moving from the static zone into the action zone.
Sometimes, we just need some clarity when it comes to our blog.
We need a third party to look at our blog critically, study our current schedules and work out a roadmap that we can implement.
How is this motivating?
Because instead of dipping your finger into every pie, you narrow your focus and pick one thing to work on, at a time.
You understand things like who your audience is and why they should read your blog.
Once you have that clarity, you’re energised to test out all the strategies you’ve learnt and you’d dedicate yourself to the task completely.
From creating the right content to reaching the right people, a blog coach is a tremendous boost when you’re feeling low.
A lot of the people that I coach have actually told me this when I’ve finished a session with them.
Go on and book a session today. It’s very reasonably priced, I promise!
Commit to one post a week to begin
Setting tiny goals is always more relevant than setting large and impossible ones.
Pick a doable schedule that works for you. For most bloggers, I recommend starting with just one blog post a week.
The good thing about this is that you’re not trying to do too much at once.
Your mind tells you, ‘Hey’ it’s just one post. That’s easy!’
Even today, I try to blog once or twice a week.
But the content I write is very detailed and in-depth, so it makes sense to only publish one or two good posts each week.
Even if I publish more than a post a week, I ensure that the content is still valuable enough to give my readers exactly what they need.
In other words, don’t post for the sake of posting.
Focus on consistency over volume
I can’t emphasise this enough.
Show up every week, at the same time, when you decide to commit to your blog.
It is this consistency that will keep you motivated.
Plan your schedule around your Google Analytics statistics. Watch the quick video below to understand how to do that.
Notice that most of my traffic peaks on Mondays and Thursdays each week. Do you know why?
I get a tiny boost in traffic on Mondays because I used to share my content on Twitter using the hashtag, #MondayBlogs.
My engaged audience knows that I tend to publish a new blog post on Wednesdays and looks forward to it.
In case they forget, they get a link and a reminder about the new post in my weekly newsletter that goes out on Thursday mornings.
Hence, the peak in traffic on those days. Simple, isn’t it? 🙂
*This was back when I was using Twitter (I’ve since deleted my Twitter account). Read more about why I did that.
Why I chose to delete my Twitter account with over 5000 followers
Have an accountability Partner
If you’ve ever started a fitness routine, you can relate to this tip.
It’s the same thing with blogging.
Remember that it isn’t the job of the accountability partner to motivate you. Her job is to ensure that you stick to your blogging track and vice versa.
The onus is on you to show up every time.
Find a blogging buddy through Facebook or Twitter or Instagram.
Ideally, find someone who is in your niche as well as more or less at your level of experience.
Follow a veteran blogger whose tips you both trust implicitly and start applying them to your blog.
Compare notes and see what works and what doesn’t. Coordinate with each other at least once a week to figure out how far you’ve progressed.
This keeps the blogging juice flowing even without your realising it.
Start writing out post ideas
Blog ideas strike at any time, am I right?
The good news is these can serve as great fodder for content creation all through the year.
Use either a digital note taking app (I love Google Keep for this).
7 Fantastic ways to use Google Keep for Blog Post Ideas
Or have a notebook handy.
Keep listing out ideas and expand on them when you have a few minutes to spare each day.
What I do is open the Google Keep app and start sketching outlines for a post idea.
Then, when I am back at the laptop, I copy paste the outline into WordPress and before I know it, I’ve knocked out 1000 words without even trying!
The best part is that from there, finishing the post only takes about 30 minutes.
Work on something blog-related
Sometimes, blogging by itself can feel tiresome. Writing all day, every day is not necessarily always fun, especially if you’ve just started blogging.
In that case, work on something related to the blog but not writing posts.
For example, create new pin images for older posts using Canva.
Do a backup of your blog content.
Update or delete inactive plugins.
The idea is to stay in the blogging mind space until you feel energised enough to start writing again. Simple, right?
For more tips check out these 21 Blogging Tasks that Every Blogger Should do for a Healthy Blog.
Study a course (free/paid)
Any time you get stuck on the blogging path, the best thing to do is to take stock and re-assess where you are.
Personally, I use this frame of mind to improve my understanding of certain blogging concepts like Pinterest or SEO.
Two courses I thoroughly enjoy when it comes to Pinterest are Pinteresting Strategies by Carly Campbell and Pins Made Happy by Audrey Marshall.
Pinteresting Strategies is the best course on manual pinning ever written and Carly, the creator, enjoys well over 200,000 page views per month!
The Pins Made Happy course by Audrey Marshall is phenomenal too because it goes deep into the psychology of pin design and how to create pins that pop and encourage people to click through to your site!
What’s better? Audrey is Carly’s pin design specialist, so a lot of Carly’s pins are actually made by Audrey! Cool, right? 🙂
My personal favourite part about this course is the private Facebook group where Audrey provides personal feedback on your pins!
Definitely check out Pins Made Happy if you’d like to improve your Pinterest game this year.
Well worth every penny spent!
If you’re wondering about free courses that can help you get through the blogging slump, here’s a list of 31 Free Blogging Courses I put together a while ago!
Celebrate Tiny wins
Every win is important in the blogging space and celebrating them all is a great way to stay the course!
Did you get a surge in e-mail subscribers?
Published an extra blog post this week?
Get featured in an online magazine for your hard work?
Every win is a way to celebrate the hard work that comes with being a blogger.
Share the news with your social media followers or your e-mail list.
There are more people who are ready to support you and your dreams than you’d imagined possible.
Work smarter; Not harder
Why do most of us fail? It’s because we try to do too much too soon.
Now here are some tips to help you stop doing that.
You’d observe that if you follow these tips, you’d automatically stay motivated to blog for the long run.
1. Pick a goal and stick with it for the next 3 months. For example, if your goal is to increase page views on your blog, make that your primary focus.
2. Commit to working on that goal every single day, even if it’s for just 30 minutes a day.
3. Make the goal easy and measurable. If you’re getting 10 page views a day, aim for at least 30 page views a day.
It’s a marginal increase and not too intimidating to achieve. You’d be surprised by how easy it is to go beyond that actually!
4. Identify where your traffic source is strongest and then buckle down and make that source your core focus.
5. Don’t overwork! This is the number one culprit. People work 8 hours a day on their blog and wonder why they don’t see progress.
This is the worst mistake possible. Work for 2 or 3 hours a day but ensure that the work is distraction-free, laser focused on your primary goal and not stressful.
Try this out and tell me how your progress is a month from now.
P.S. My Own personal goal for Jan to March 2020 was to increase page views on my blog. In less than 25 days, I hit one threshold of that goal: 10,000 page views in 30 days!
And it’s ONLY because of working smarter, not harder.
Stop the comparison game
This is the biggest stumbling block for every blogger who gets demotivated.
The comparison game sucks and it’s even more true if you’re a newbie blogger or if you’ve been blogging for a while and not seen any progress.
You have to stop doing this because you just cannot benchmark yourself against a blogger who’s been doing this for 3 years when you’ve been in the game for just 3 months.
It’s apples and oranges!
Similarly, don’t start comparing your numbers/page views/income with anyone else on Facebook groups.
All you see is someone saying ‘I finally got into this amazing ad network and am making $3000 a month through affiliate income.’
What you don’t see is the months of research they put into their blog, the hours of agonizing they spent on their content and the weeks of work that went into making all of that happen.
You can do it too, I promise.
But you’d have to forge your own path and only focus on what works!
Write about things that inspire you
Many bloggers make the mistake of writing for SEO.
While there’s a technique to do that and it isn’t all bad, writing for SEO becomes very tedious and can affect your blogging motivation.
When you sit down to write any post first ask yourself why you are writing this post.
Is it something you’ve personally experienced?
Will sharing about it inspire and help others who are facing similar problems?
Then, that’s the best post to write.
Now, you’ve written the content that both you and your audience want.
After you’ve written the post, go ahead and optimise for SEO. Because at that point you’re just getting it ready for Google.
Set aside a day for a complete break from the blog
As much as I love blogging, I always recommend that bloggers take one day a week off from the whole blogging journey.
Not doing so can lead to burnout and frustration and you’d stop blogging as soon as you’ve started.
Take a break from the blog and enjoy connecting with other bloggers in your niche.
Read their blogs, share their content and send them an e-mail to tell them how much you appreciate the work that they do.
This builds goodwill and is also a wonderful way to ensure you never lose sight of why you began blogging in the first place: to forge connections with people and to write content that matters.
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