I started my blog because Seth Godin told me to.
I used to be subscribed to Success Magazine, and every issue came with a CD of an interview. This was a whopping 8 years ago, back when CD’s were a thing.
It was the first time I heard of Seth Godin. In the interview, someone had asked him what the best piece of advice he could give was and he said “start a blog and write in it every day.” So that’s what I did.
That’s where it started for me. One thing turned into another and here I am. Still blogging, still writing, still discovering more about myself and about my place in the world.
My blog is one of the best career moves and personal choices I have ever made. The benefits of daily blogging come in many different forms. I would like to share them with you.
Let’s get started.
Daily Blogging Gives Me Discipline
It’s not an easy thing, to write a blog post every day.
Some days I don’t feel like doing it. Some days, I can’t think of anything good to say. Some days are boring and uneventful and I have nothing to inspire me.
Those are the days that matter most, because that’s when discipline plays a role.
People have this strange conception about art. They think that in order to be a good artist, you need to be inspired. But that’s ridiculous. This is my work, and I am responsible for my work in the same way that anyone else would be. You can’t call out of work because you’re uninspired, yet artists do it all the time.
That’s the difference between amateurs and professionals.
Amateurs wait for inspiration and motivation. Professionals get the job done.
It’s important to me to be able to push through those blocks of strain and struggle. It seems like every night I sit down at dinner with Juliana and I ask “Jules, what should I write about tonight?”
She says “I dunno babe, you’ll figure it out.”
It Gives Me My Ideas
I don’t write every day because I have a lot of ideas. I have a lot of ideas because I write every day.
In reality, it is the days in which I just described that are the real opportunities. On the days where I’m really stuck, that’s when I need to start digging. That’s where I start to look around.
One thing leads to another and over time, I find openings, opportunities, angles or situations that I wouldn’t have been able to see if I wasn’t so inundated with learning and researching and writing.
My blog is a daily exercise on my mind. In the same way you can strengthen your muscles and your body through physical exercise, I strengthen my knowledge base and my intellect through collecting data and writing about it.
It’s The Most Beneficial Marketing Tool
Why would anyone start a blog?
Why waste your time blogging when you could take selfies on Instagram or create a YouTube channel? The internet is all about images and video now. You need to be doing video or else no one will find you. Right?
That’s so wrong. Couldn’t be more wrong. I will tell you why.
Search engines still index websites by their words. Search engines (mainly Google) are still the biggest driver and web traffic and search engines need to be able to read words. Google can’t actually index what is being said or talked about in a video or podcast. Google needs to see words. If you spend time creating written content, you have a much better chance of being found through search.
More people consume text than video. In fact, younger people prefer to get their news through written text rather than video. It’s also not to say that people aren’t watching video, because they are. But people rarely watch a video from beginning to end. In fact, the average Facebook video is watched for 23 seconds. The point is, that written word is still much more impactful on therefore, a much more effective tool.
Written word has a much lower barrier to entry. High production value for video is incredibly expensive. Sure, you can pull out your phone and start a vlog, but that only goes so far. Without professional editing, music, layovers and transitions, video content won’t be taken seriously. But the written word doesn’t need all of that. All I need is a blank page.
Something To Stand In Front Of
Some people would say that it’s just as beneficial to keep a diary or a journal. I suppose I agree. But the difference between a diary is that it is private. You can hide things in a diary.
I journal in my notebook every day, but that’s mostly for me to keep my life in order. When you have a blog, you are not hiding. In fact, you are doing the opposite of hiding, you are sharing.
“This is what I think. This is what I feel. I am going to share it with you.” It’s not spouting an opinion on a message board and it’s not retweeting something that is agreeable with you.
To post a blog, you need to carefully outline your thoughts and present your ideas in a way that is digestible and clear. Then you need to publish your work. This is the scary part.
The Value of Hitting Publish
I can’t say it enough.
The hardest part about creating art is showing it to other people. I often wonder how many beautiful poems are stacked up in bookshelves, never to be read. I wonder how many amazing songs have been written in the minds of musicians that no one will ever hear.
Hitting publish builds character. Even if your work sucks, the value is putting it out for the world to see is a life changing experience.
You are making yourself vulnerable. There’s nothing that toughens you up faster than being ridiculed in front of a crowd.
But it’s okay. Because you are living life. You are truly living.
I’m reminded of my favorite Teddy quotes…
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
I could keep going on. I could keep listing the obvious benefits of building positive habits into my life. But ultimately, for me it’s pretty simple.
I write in my blog every day because I chose to, because its hard. I do it because I want to see how long I can go for, because I think I can go longer than you can. I do it because I love to write and because it makes me happy.
I can’t think of a single good reason not to.