Blogging: Truths & Finding Your Voice

I really love being a blogger. Since I began, I have found myself constantly inspired by things around me that I love writing about: Its been a ton of fun. This weekend, I hit my 200th post and I started thinking about all the reasons I started to blog and the other fun things that came into my life because of the blog😄
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Blogging Truths.
Recently I had a conversation with my wifey about why I like reading other blogs, writing my own, and why I think people (other bloggers) get addicted to them: it’s because blogging is like reading a book…only that book is somebody’s “real life” and that the feel of keeping up with someones “real life” is a lot fun because it’s engaging, entertaining, and interesting.

I always promised myself that I would stay true to my own self as a blogger. Whether I think something is amazingly great, or amazingly awful..you’re going to hear my honest opinion…This characteristic is both my best and worst quality as a person. I hate being lied to and I promise never to lie to you. I may, intentionally, leave some stuff OFF the blog because I have a little girl to protect, and also a lot of my friends don’t want to be exposed so I will leave off/change/abbreviate their names to protect their private lives.

As a blogger..I also promised myself that I would never post a blog post unless I had something to say. I don’t like reading ” filler” blog posts. Whats a filler post? A post with no real “oomph” to it, and you feel like your writer/blogger is writing with their only intent being to post a daily post. I know you have seem these posts too. .

It is a proven fact that bloggers who are more active by posting more will gain more followers. I think it’s great if someone can post every day, but, during the school year my life is crazy. Between training for a marathon, being a wife, a stepmom, a full time teacher: BALANCE has become an art form. There may be weeks that I only post a few times, and there could be weeks where I have some double post days. Morale of the story: I truly value quality verses quantity. So that, ladies and gentlemen, is the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
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Reasons behind starting the Blog.
I started this blog in August of 2013. In the past 9 months, I have learned a lot about myself as a writer, a person, and as a runner. I decided, on a whim, to create this blog because you may have noticed- I am just a TAD obsessed with running. Since most of my friends/family/coworkers know I’m a runner and always ask me running questions, I thought it would be fun to create a website where I can address common running questions, share my own tips, and get feedback from other runners-be it newbies or old pros- I think you can always learn from others in your trade.

This blog also ended up becoming an outlet and a way to vent from my reactions to the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. Some of you have been readers from the get go and have read my story (ies) of my experience from the very beginning –Thank you. The feedback and reactions from all of you-whether I have never officially met you, or if I have known you since Kindergarten and you are reading this blog(I share the links on my personal page too)- you are awesome and gave me so much hope and positivity from your wonderful messages. I’m glad that chapter of my life is behind me -It was like I was waiting to exhale for an entire year until I could finally cross that finish line.
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Blogging Connections
Something I DIDN’T expect when I started blogging is that I would make NEW FRIENDS. Before becoming a blogger, I would always say “I have enough friends, and I don’t have time for new ones”( because I have a hard enough time keeping up with my current ones).
WHAT a DUMMY I was! I love my friends I have made from the blog world. I literally met a new friend who actually lives the next street over from me-who gets luckier than that?? I think fate was shining down on us! I have made friends with other runners and have plans to meet up with them at different races. I have gotten closer to some friends because we bonded over running.
I love all of this! The energy of the running community is so amazing: I think that after Boston 2013-running has spread like WILDFIRE. I see more and more runners hitting the streets, I hear more from my friends/coworkers who have just begun to run or even have recommitted themselves to the sport. I freaking love that We can all benefit from new friendships, can we not?
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My Own Advice: What makes ME want to read a blog?
I’m just gonna say it: I like when bloggers share lots of pictures and stories from their own lives. The factual posts are fantastic, but I also like reading about someone’s triumphs and struggles on their personal journey. It makes the blogger seem “real”. This is something that I have been striving to do: To share more of me and my random life as a runner-wife-mommy-teacher-multitasker extraordinaire. I love when my favorite bloggers tell stories of their own lives because it lets you feel like you know them a little better. Pictures help with that! This is something I plan to continue to do (while still trying to keep the balance between the REALLY personal stuff and stuff that is share-able)

Blogging Voice
In the first months of blogging, I really wanted to grow my site more. I wanted to have many followers and increase my audience, so I sought advice from the experts. One of the VERY BEST pieces of advice I ever got was from Cori at Olive to Run (If you haven’t checked out her blog, please do, she rocks).

Cori told me to make sure I find my “blog voice.” To make sure that when people read my blog, they see ME shining through and hear my inner voice : Not someone else’s opinions or ideas. My Theme, my opinions, my ideas. It is something I have never forgotten.

I really thought about my own voice. What pieces of me do I want to convey the most? How can I help others? Who do I want to be? I’m a runner, obviously, but I knew I was MORE than that. I wanted to inspire others to start running, or to keep running. I wanted to show someone that dreams can happen, and to never stop trying. I wanted to be an "Inspirational running blogger."

9 months into blogging, I have learned that the “numbers game” of my stats and followers isn’t as important as I once thought: I am making real connections to real people-And THAT is a cool thing.
I am by no means a “pro”, but I can tell you that finding my voice helped me tremendously. If you are a blogger, I encourage YOU to reflect on your own “voice.”

And that is where I leave you today, my friends. Thanks for being along for the journey, for following, for reading. Thanks for your opinions, advice, and daily reactions to the things I post. I can’t thank you enough for all of the support you give to my blog..even if it’s just a “like” on my TGWRE Facebook page…i love it. There are literally so many people who tell me, randomly, that they like my blog and have been inspired by it-thank you-YOU ROCK!!
This is my life and I love that you are a part of it. ❤️

Why do YOU blog?
What message(s) are you trying to send?

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24 thoughts on “Blogging: Truths & Finding Your Voice

  1. Hey Girl! I was just back-tracking through your blog and found this post which I love! Do you know what happened to Cori at Olive to Run? I started following her and then her blog disappeared 😦

  2. Great post! I started my blog to chronicle my way to qualifying for Boston, and to keep me accountable. I love reading other blogs and hearing others stories. I also love sharing mine. I still have not met up with any other local bloggers, but I know I will in July. 🙂 I have trouble keeping up with my blog and reading/commenting on others. I’m almost always doing a quick read through for the blogs I love, but don’t always comment. Life gets in the way, and its a balancing act for sure!

  3. I couldn’t agree with you more about quality over quanity. We started our blog ( I write with my best friend) a few months back and that was one of the things we really struggled with. We started blogging to do something fun with our time and share our stories. We have a lot of stuff in common but two different opinions on stuff so it’s fun to write from both sides.

  4. Great post! I started my blog as a creative outlet, to help keep myself accountable in my training, and to keep family all over the world involved in our lives. That is awesome advice from Cori and she definitely shines through in her posts. I’m still getting the hang of blogging and hope as my training picks up I can direct my blog in the direction I really want it to go. I love seeing a little into the blogger’s personal life too, just so we can learn more about who is behind the blog.

  5. Beautiful and very inspiring post!! Thanks for sharing a bit of yourself!! You’re an awesome blogger!! 😉
    I started my blog because I wanted to share my heart, love, and compassion for life!! I wanted to inspire people through my voice and words and share the message that staying positive in tough situations can make a huge difference in the outcome!!
    Have a fabulous day!! XOXO!!

  6. I started blogging in August as well and am no where near 200 posts yet! I found your blog a month or two ago and have really enjoyed reading…especially about your experiences running Boston. Congrats on building a successful blog so quickly!

  7. That’s interesting. I didn’t know we started blogging at the same time. Cori’s blog was one of the first I started following and I love reading hers. I also love blogs with lots of pictures, too. I kind of suck at taking them for my own, but I try to remember. LOL I started mine because when I started following running blogs, I liked the idea of having one for myself to write about my journey and my goals (and any other random crap that pops into my head).

  8. You know, I started blogging bc I wanted to be accountable… I kept saying, i’m going to run a half i’m going to run a full… and then I never did it… now I feel like I have the support and I would feel dumb if I didn’t keep to my word. I LOVE blogging… I’ve met some amazing people (present company included) and it really IS addicting. I’m just trying to be me… ya know.. I’ve been a runner for a long time and I TRULY have a passion for it. It’s nice to talk to other people who feel the same way and don’t think I’m “obsessed” with running… I love that there are other people out there just looking for their next PR or next good run…. I literally find myself laughing and crying reading others peoples blogs, it’s like looking into a tiny window of their hearts and souls…. amazing…

  9. I was all worried about my numbers and how people were going to find my blog the first month but now I haven’t even looked at any statistics for ages. I check maybe once every few weeks out of curiosity but I just don’t care anymore, I know I have regular readers and I love knowing names and stories of people who read me because I read them and having these little friendships across the country/world.

  10. I just started blogging, so this was awesome to read. I think my biggest challenge might be finding a balance of how much and what personal info and life-stuff to share. I am not a natural selfie and photo taking kind of person ( I’m the anti selfie) and I’m not used to feeling like everyday stuff is worth taking pictures of. I also don’t want to let it all hang out and be obnoxious. Any advice for finding a balance? I think you do a good job of it.

    • thank you and this is something I struggle with myself. I think the key,
      For me, is that if I can actually remember to stop and take a picture of something, then it is most likely something interesting enough to put on the blog-bc I am terrible at actually
      Remembering to take pics!
      If it something important to you-you’ll start to remember! And honestly, it – took me a while to get the hang of it, too. As far as finding balance with life stuff and what to share-I try to remember that people I work with can see my blog too and that keeps me in check not to put anything in here that could potentially embarrass me.:)
      I hope this helps!:)

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