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10 Things I Learned After One Year of Blogging

Photo by Small Things Photo Co.

Last week, I celebrated one year of blogging, and WOW, what a year it has been!

I’ve failed. I’ve regrouped. I’ve cheered. I’ve laughed. I’ve cried.

It’s been exhaustingly fun for the most part, and I’m forever grateful that I said yes when I felt God leading me down the path to writing. I’ve learned a lot.

1. I’ve learned to celebrate small success.

A few weeks ago, I got an e-mail from a complete stranger about a problem with my mobile website. At first, I was bummed that there was an issue. (Plus, yours truly is the current tech team for this ship.)

Then, I rejoiced because a complete stranger couldn’t find something that I wrote and they really wanted to read it!

Success doesn’t look as big as it used to for me, but I sure get to celebrate more often.

2. I’ve learned to surround myself with a few Godly friends.

I have one friend that I’ve relied heavily on over this past year for support. We jokingly call her my “board of directors.” She’s challenged me and prayed for me.

Sometimes you just need close, trusted friends that hold you accountable, let you cry on their shoulder, or set you back on the right path. Slowly, God is putting a small group of people around me for accountability and encouragement.

3. I’ve learned to be myself.

Ever since I can remember, I’ve struggled to know how to fit in.

I’ve been told I’m too compassionate for the business world. I’ve been told I’m too much of a perfectionist for the creative world. Where does a compassionate, perfectionist, business-minded, creative fit in?

Writing has freed me to be all of these things, to not pretend, to truly be myself. Being exactly who God created me to be.

4. I’ve learned to have fun with my work.

Fun is not always my middle name. I can get task-driven and goal-oriented very easily, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I just tend to compartmentalize that work is work and fun comes later.

This year I’ve tried to laugh at myself more as well as try new things, and guess what? It’s been fun.

Someone that was giving me a quote for editing my book told me that she loved how I showed my personality in my book. That was a win for me. I was being myself AND having fun doing it.

5. I’ve learned that serving YOU is important.

One of my goals for year two is to really dive into what you, my reader, needs. I want my words to serve you and point you to Jesus.

Year one was filled with blog posts that were simply throwing darts at the wall to see what would stick. This year I want darts thrown at a target. My words are nothing if they don’t serve you in some way.

6. I’ve learned to stay in my lane.

I’m a writer. I’ll never be a photographer, web designer, marketing guru, or social media expert.

I do my best, but I never let my weaknesses dominate my time. If I allow them to take up a lot of my time, burn out starts to happen.

When I write, I drive in my lane.

I’ve been writing since I was a kid. It comes naturally to me, so I spend my hours honing my writing skills.

7. I’ve learned obedience matters most.

I had the opportunity to have a phone conversation with a potential editor/agent last spring. His family is well-known in the publishing industry, and I was stoked that he wanted to talk to me.

He told me I was off to a great start, but I needed to grow my platform and that maybe I should start with another book other than the one I had already written. This was all to grow my audience. After the phone call, I really contemplated switching my trajectory. I even outlined a completely new book, but I knew God was saying no.

It may not be easy or even seem sane at times, but I want to obediently choose God’s plan every time.

8. I’ve learned the need for a daily quiet time.

If I don’t maintain my relationship with God, this whole thing falls apart. It’s just that simple.

9. I’ve learned that my writing is a ministry.

I don’t need a title. I don’t need a position. I don’t need permission.

I pursue God’s calling and tell others about Him. That’s my ministry, and I do my best to keep it that simple.

10. I’ve learned that writing is a family affair.

Scott, my amazing husband, is a gift to me. He’s been my biggest supporter and always provides me encouragement. He dreams big right beside me and sometimes for me when I lose my confidence.

My kids don’t know it yet, but they teach me and inspire me. A lot of what I write stems from something they’ve shown me or taught me. Their childlike faith in God reminds me to keep it simple.

I want my family to be included in this journey so that it’s not just me seeing God’s faithfulness through acts of obedience. It’s all of us.

I’ve learned so much in year one. I can’t wait to see all that year two holds!

Cheers to year two!

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