3 THINGS I'VE LEARNED

After 3 years of blogging I've learned 3 important lessons

3 THINGS I'VE LEARNED FROM 3 YEARS OF BLOGGING

Firstly can I just say that I can't believe I've been doing three posts a week for three years (and that doesn't include the two A-Z Challenges where twice I've blogged six days a week in April!) So much water under the bridge and I've learned so much since I first opened Google and searched how to start a blog.

That momentous day was exactly three years ago at the end of November 2014 and there have been numerous lessons along the way - blogging lessons where I've had to come to grips with all the background stuff that makes a blog work and look good, and also mental and emotional stuff as I've put my thoughts together and put them out into the internet ether. I've "met" so many fantastic people and I've grown more than I ever would have expected. So, on that note, here are three things I have learned along the way.

1.  IT'S OKAY TO BLOG ON MY OWN TERMS


  • It's okay to have a blog on Blogger - even when everyone is saying "go to Wordpress".
  • It's okay to have a blog that costs nothing - even when everyone says "be self-hosted".
  • A free blog can look as good as an expensive self-hosted one - at least I think so anyway!
  • I don't have to blog about fashion, food, or DYI - which is lucky because I'm not that cluey.
  • I can have a voice and share my life - something that has been a revelation and joy.
  • If I invest in others, they will invest in me - and thank you so much to those who do.

2.  IT'S ABOUT CONNECTION - NOT FAME

I think we all start a blog wondering where it will take us and as we go along we also wonder whether we'll find that magic unicorn - the viral post. Once I stopped thinking about fame and fortune and kicked back and enjoyed writing for the sake of it, I found a whole new purpose in blogging - connection.

The women I've met in the blogging world have enriched my life beyond belief. They have shown me that Midlife is a fantastic time to be alive and they have encouraged me every step of the way. They have helped validate my life and my choices, and their comments show me that we're all in this together. We're not just getting through, rather we're learning to trust ourselves again - to know who we are and to be proud of that person.

The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance

3.  MIDLIFE CAN BE EMBRACED

Building on the point above, I hit my 50's wondering what there was to be happy about. The kids had left home, I was still working and just living life day to day. Then along came Blogging - it engaged my mind, it taught me new skills, it opened me eyes to the writings of dozens of other women at the same age and stage, and it showed me that Midlife rocks! It's not about age, it's about attitude.

I really hope I'm still writing in another three years time. Sometimes I wonder whether I will, or whether I'll have found something else to take its place. None the less, I know there is still more for me to write so I'm not going anywhere for a while! 

To finish this post I thought I'd leave you with half a dozen of my most popular posts in case you'd like to look back at some of the better stuff I've written since that day in November 2014.

The Heart Values Resonance
Midlife and the New Normal
Fake It Til You Make It
Detachment Parenting
Forgive and Move On
Learn From Your Parents' Mistakes

After 3 years of blogging I've learned 3 important lessons

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42 comments

  1. yes, yes, yes! Yes, I don't need a fancy site or think about monetizing it. Yes, it is all about the connections! and Yes, this is a wonderful time of life to be thriving in. I'm glad I found your blog.

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    1. I'm glad you found me too! And you are so right about Midlife being a fantastic time to be alive. Blogging helped me discover that and I am so grateful for it every day.

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  2. Congratulations on three years of blogging. I’m so glad we’ve connected. The connections and self-expression are the best parts of blogging for me. Thanks for sharing your insights.

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    1. Hi Christie - thanks for the congrats and I'm really glad we've connected too. I feel so blessed to be surrounded by so many women doing amazing things and writing about their lives - so inspiring!

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  3. Hi, Leanne - This post had me at the title! Before reading further, I made a quick note of my top 3 lessons learned from blogging.
    1. Blogging is all about connecting with others. (Match √)
    2. Blogging is much more time-consuming than I realized it would be. (Even when attempting to blog on my 'own terms'!)
    3. My learning curve from blogging has been straight up....and there is still so much that I don't know.
    4. (I just couldn't stop at 3) There are A LOT of bloggers out there!
    I love your Neil Gaiman quote. Regardless of the number of people currently blogging, each one holds something unique that cannot be duplicated by another. Thank you for sharing this.

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    1. Hi Donna - I'm glad I got you to stop and come up with your top lessons too - you are so right (we could probably list 20 between us if we put our minds to it!) It's been so lovely connecting with you across the entire planet and to have found so much in common xx

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  4. Congratulations Leanne, three wonderful years in blogsphere is a great achievement.

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  5. Congratulations my blogging buddy. We have shared many conversations about the highs and lows of blogging. I'm so glad we connected early on in our blogging adventure. Thanks for your friendship and support. I'm a huge fan and we both love ABBA that's got to be a good thing xx

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    1. I think a love for ABBA is a non-negotiable Sue :) and you have saved me many times from throwing in the towel! I'm so glad we found each other and get to do this blogging thing together! xx

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  6. So so so so so much yes to your number two. I think my learning that started with blogging and then quickly permeated the rest of my existence!

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    1. I think blogging lets us lay open our minds Carla and it helps us to think on a different level and challenge ourselves - that has to have an overflow into other aspects of our lives doesn't it?

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  7. Agree with everything you just said....I do this because I love it...and the people I have met(although not in person) blog the way have truly enriched my life...you are included in this group.... <3

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    1. Renee you are one of my favourites too! Just reading about the quirky things that happen in your life always gives me a smile - and if blogging doesn't make us smile then why would we do it?

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  8. I can't believe I've been blogging 10 years!! I think my biggest lesson has really been that it's ok to share and it's ok NOT to share :) I love the community i've created!!

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    1. TEN YEARS! Wow! and you're absolutely right about the sharing - I've learned that you never can tell what people will read into a post. But at the same time I love having somewhere to put my thoughts out there and to know that I'm not alone.

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  9. Congrats on your three years. Three posts a week...I am really impressed. I enjoy your posts. Thank you and good luck on year four.

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    1. Hi Leah - thanks for your kind words - I'm going to ease off a bit next year I think (well that's the plan anyway) who knows what the year ahead holds - I'm not sure that I'll tackle the A-Z again either - Huge! undertaking :)

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  10. True! True! And True! So well said, Leanne!

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    1. Thanks Di - and thanks for being one of the first people I ever met on the blogging road - and for still being there three years later cheering me on :)

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  11. Huge congrats to you Leanne for all your blogging successes over the years. Your tips are great to read, as I get so tired of reading blogging advice of things we should/shouldn’t be doing with our blogs. I blog for the same reason you do, to have a voice, to keep learning and to connect with others. I’m so glad I found your blog and love reading your posts. Thanks so much for doing it your and long may you continue to do so.

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    1. Thanks for your lovely words Deb - I think we Aussie bloggers have a connection and a way of writing that we each "get" without having to figure out why. Every time I find someone's blog I love I treasure the connection and it inspires me to keep going.

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  12. Congratulations, that is quite a blogging record. So much still to learn for me but I love it even if just to keep my brain active.

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    1. It keeps my neurons firing too - they could do with all the help they can get these days - so blogging gets a big tick :)

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  13. Well said... to thyself be true! I pinned your blog to my pinterest

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    1. Thanks for pinning me Sylvie - I think we all need to keep that mantra in mind :)

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  14. Love you said it is all about the connection not the fame. I don't even try to make money. Not what it is all about for me. Found you on Bloggers Pit Stop.

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    1. I don't try to make money either Candy - once the monetizing starts, the soul selling starts too and I'm not ready to do that just yet (or probably forever!)

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  15. I've already commented on this post, but wanted to thank you for linking up on #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty.

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  16. Blogging is most definitely about connecting with others! And I agree with the comment above - it is way more time consuming than I imagined! Thanks for sharing at The Blogger's Pit Stop! Roseann from www.thisautoimmunelife.com

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    1. It does tend to take over your life doesn't it Roseann? I've just taken a week's break and I am amazed at how much spare time I had on my hands!

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  17. Another popular post, Leanne. It is good to listen to others as long as we also think for ourselves. You obviously do, and you have found your voice and style and we love it.
    Be looking for a feature this week.
    Kathleen
    Blogger's Pit Stop

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    1. Kathleen I am always so pleased when I read that I'm going to be featured on your blog - it's such an honour to know that others enjoy what I write x

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  18. Leanne, you can't see me but I'm standing up (awkward to type but worth it)and cheering! This is amazing and has made me take a deep breath, another, and then nodded my head, you just answered my doubts about blogging, thank you, just what I needed to read today. Dropped by from #BloggersPitStop (amazing way to connect bloggers, they are just so awesome) but always glad to be here to soak in your wisdom. Thank you again and hope you and yours have a wonder-filled holiday season. All the best now and all year long. Merry Christmas! 🎄

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    1. What a lovely and thoughtful thing to say Donna. Your posts are always so full of interesting memes and thoughts (and chock-a-block with comments!) so I find it hard to believe you have your doubts, but I guess it happens to the best of us and that's when we take a little breather and come back fresh and ready to start again - it's definitely an end of year thing too isn't it?

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  19. HI Leanne,
    Happy blogversary! You and I started around the same time. I didn't realize you were right behind me. I always thought you started before me.
    Janice

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    1. I noticed the same thing when you commented on having reached three years too Janice - you've certainly branched out and made a much bigger inroad into the process, but I'm still very happy to have found my little corner of the blogosphere :)

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  20. Well written and well said. I am way past my 50, and already hit the 60, but I am having a ball. Still working, empty nest, although filled from time to time with grand kids, and love it. Blogging has been a haven to me and you can call it my 'retail therapy' after work. I had no clue when I started out and am still learning daily, and connecting with wonderful and awesome people like you, and having fun every time I get behind my computer or open my phone and see comments and posts from all the wonderful fellow bloggers out there.
    I will also keep blogging as long as I can as I enjoy every moment and the friendship of this blogging community.

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    1. My friend Sue just turned and is doing an amazing job with her blogging. I love that there is no age barrier - and not being a mommy blogger isn't a drawback because we have our own little Midlife group of cheerleaders - it's a wonderful pastime to have discovered isn't it - and thanks so much for your lovely comment x

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  21. Leanne, happy third blogiversary! I hope you will keep it up, even if that means cutting back on your posting frequency. I've been at this for nearly 8 years now, posting "just" once a week. I knew before I started I'd never be able to post consistently more often than that. Love your blog, love your attitude!

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    1. Thanks for your lovely encouraging words Jean - I think it's time for me to ease off a bit next year, but I'll still be blogging away because I'm not sure what I'd do without the interaction and sheer pleasure I get from all the people I've met and connected with - yourself included!

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  22. I totally agree it's alright to have blog on blogger. I love blogger! And it's great.

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  23. It truly is all about the connection. This is also true when one is looking to monetize. Without connection there is nothing.

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