In late of September 2012, I started Alisha’s Appetite during a major time of change and uncertainty in my life. I had been married for 3 months, just moved 10 hours away from home and was in the middle of my search for a job (read: unemployed).
I had been reading healthy living blogs for a few years and thought that I could start my own. I knew I wanted to talk about living a healthy life (with recipes and workout tips), and thought what better time to start a new hobby than after a big life change? They always say to start new hobbies/habits when you move, so that’s what I did.
To say my first year of blogging as been a roller coaster ride would be putting it lightly. I’ve gone through numerous ups and downs with blogging- from debating if I wanted to shut the blog down, to switching from wordpress to a self-hosted site, to meeting new friends/other bloggers, etc. I’ve been thinking back over this past year and realized that not only have I learned SO much about blogging (and still have much to learn), but the things I have learned applies to my entire life.
Not only have I grown as a blogger since I published my first post one year ago, I have grown immensely as a person -and I owe a lot of it to blogging. So I thought I would share what my 5 life lessons blogging taught me are because I am certain others will be able to relate.
1. Comparison is the Death of Happiness.
I never really understood this until I starting blogging, strangely enough. This is definitely one of those things that are easier said than done- but so necessary to my sanity. After blogging for a few months, I started learning that there weren’t just a handful of blogs out there (you mean there are way more than the 10 or so blogs I was currently reading?) and the deeper I got into the blog world, the more I discovered that there are A LOT of bloggers. Like, a lot. Now I think it’s super awesome (the more the merrier!), but at the time when I was just starting my blog, this newfound discovery was extremely intimidating.
Instead of not comparing myself to others, I did just that. I have a hunch that my difficult job search had a role in diminishing my confidence in this aspect, but regardless, I felt incompetent as a blogger compared to other bloggers.
I am SO GLAD that I am not in that mindset anymore and have learned not to compare myself to others, or at least be conscious of it and try really hard not to let myself do it. And not just in blogging, but in my entire life. It’s easy to look at someone and think that they have it all, but it’s so important to remember that we all are struggling in one way or another. We are all facing our own battles. The secret to happiness is to appreciate what you have and enjoy your life for the journey that you are on. This is hands down the biggest and most valuable life lesson that blogging taught me.
2. The More You Learn The Less You Know.
I think Socrates might have been onto something when he said this…. but I really think that this applies to everything in my life. The older I get the more I learn, but the more I learn the more I feel there is to learn! I used to think of this as a negative thing, but now I look at it as something that’s really exciting. We can technically never get bored or stop learning….. in life or in the blogging world. There is so much that goes into blogging (writing, editing, design, social media, SEO, etc., etc., etc.), that when you think you have a good handle on things you discover more and more information. I have a feeling this will be a pertinent theme throughout my entire life. Which brings me to my next lesson…
3. Never stop Learning, Improving and Growing.
I have probably changed my design and colors more times that I want to admit over the past 12 months, but I think it’s ultimately a sign of improvement and growth. Each time I change something, my blog is only getting better. I’ve learned you can never stop growing, whether it’s on my blog, my work, my relationships or my life. Always work to be the best version of yourself that you can be. Funny how changing my blog design and material can help me understand this as a lesson for nearly every aspect of my life!
4. Change is Inevitable.
“So much can change in a year”- a quote that has hit home to me these past 12 months. Not only has my writing, blogging style, fitness preferences, and photography skills changed and improved, my entire life is different than last year. A year ago I was kind of in a weird place- I was so, so happy to be married to my best friend, but I was also dealing with a lack of both friends and a job in a new state. At the time it felt like things would never change, but what do you know? They did! I’m starting to appreciate change now and embrace new life adjustments…because it’s inevitable: things will change.
5. Life Is About Creating Yourself.
I used to think that I am and will forever be a certain way, and that I just need to “find” what that is about myself. I now know that life doesn’t have a secret book with all of your life’s purposes written in it – Life is about creating yourself, changing, improving and becoming a better version of you. The same goes for blogging: you don’t just FIND your voice and purpose as a blogger – you create it.
And just because you deserve it- a bonus life lesson:
6. Never, Ever Give Up.
I am so glad that I didn’t quit blogging a few months ago. I decided it was time for me to either stop completely or give it my all, 100%. Since I have refocused my blog, I am so happy with the results and feedback that I’ve received. So thank you to all of you who have been reading my blog since the beginning and those of you who are new. You make this worth it and so much fun. I love the challenge that blogging brings- I love to write and I love to use it as a creative outlet for my life. I also am just discovering how great the blogging community is. I’ve read about it so many times before from other bloggers but never understood it until recently….because just like anything in life you get what you give. The more I put into my relationships with other bloggers, the more I get out of it.
To celebrate my first entire year of blogging, I have a lot of exciting things coming up- including my first product review and giveaway! Be on the lookout for the giveaway later this week. (Hint, there will be not one but TWO winners. Yay!).
Bloggers: what life lessons has blogging taught YOU? Anything to add?
How do you deal with change?
Have you found yourself in the comparison trap before?