What do you need to know to succeed as a blogger?
Blogging is something (almost) anyone can accomplish by acquiring the right habits and following a clear goal. Success as a blogger (really, success in anything) boils down to instilling in yourself and in your daily schedule a certain set of the right habits. Let’s check out what you need to know to succeed as a blogger.
Blogging is not that complicated.
Let’s start by letting go of blogging as a big mysterious thing; yes, it can be complex or complicated, but it doesn’t have to get lost in that complexity.
In fact, you can ignore a good bit of the complexity and still do a decent job as a blogger. A good job as a blogger. You need to go back to the heart of blogging, which is producing good, fresh, helpful content on a regular (consistent) basis.
The heart of blogging.
The HEART of blogging is the content you create and share. Can you produce new, fresh, good content regularly? Then you can blog.
Your blog design can be average, your social media skills can be lacking, your sidebar can look terrible, you can even have a domain with “blogspot” in it… and none of those will keep your readers from finding you if you are sitting down on a regular basis and publishing posts that are helpful, informative, problem-solving, real, insightful, friendly, and genuine. Or course you can tweak the stuff that’s not great about your blog, and earn more readers.
You should do that… AFTER you produce the content.
Blogging is a set of specific skills.
Like most complicated and even intimidating goals or achievements, blogging can be broken down into a set of actions.
Let’s look at a triathlon. Running, swimming, and biking, at a grueling pace, pushing your body, ignoring physical pain and mental stress, staying focused; it’s a complicated and challenging endeavor.
But what about the actual skills required to complete a triathlon?
- Can you jog?
- Can you swim?
- Can you ride a bike?
Most of us can, even if we don’t use those skills very often (or ever). Most of us don’t face any physical or mental disability that makes the basic skills themselves difficult. So if we all have the basic skills required, what’s the difference between, say, me and someone who’s actually completed a triathlon?
It’s what you do with the skills.
It’s not in the basic skill set itself; it’s in what we each do with those skills.
It’s in the habits. A successful triathloner (triathlete?) has taken those basic skills and formed them into daily habits. Those daily habits have transformed many an average person with an average set of athletic skills into an excellent athlete who is physically fit, mentally tough, capable, alert, healthy, and strong.
Blogging is a habit that you establish.
You don’t have to be a great and naturally prolific writer to be a successful blogger.
You need some basic skills, and then you need to develop a few key habits.
You need to work some self-discipline into your life – enough to establish strong habits – and then you need to maintain those habits.
That’s it, really.
The basic skills of blogging.
What basic skills do you need to be a blogger?
- You need to have the ability to write. The stronger this skill, the easier writing will be; but all you need is the basic ability. You can develop your skill at you go.
- You need the ability to find and sort through information.
- You need the ability to create and develop ideas.
- You need some basic technical ability.
Skills into habits.
How do you turn these skills into habits?
Repetition is the key to turning basic skills into better skills.
Repetition is the key to turning basic skills into strong habits.
I know, not very exciting, is it?
But it works.
To be better tomorrow…
If you want to be better tomorrow, start today.
If you want to accomplish something by next week, start right now. If you want to succeed as a blogger in a year or two, or a few months, start blogging now.
- Don’t wait on things to simplify themselves.
- Don’t wait until you understand all your options.
- Don’t wait until you’ve perfected a system.
- Don’t wait until you’ve developed your skills.
This is your call to (blogging) action.
Write a sentence or two. Write a few more. Then a few more. Then, come on, you can do it, a few more.
Proofread it. Fix the errors.
Maybe find a nice Creative Commons image and pop it in there.
Now, doesn’t that feel better? Do that again tomorrow.