6 Year Blogiversary

So it's been about six years since I've been on blogger, about a year since I changed the name & about twelve years since I actually started blogging all together. I guess you can say that this is my third re-brand if you can include my first two incarnations of my blog. But my Blogversary is strictly for this blog with it being around since 2009. I'll be the first to admit that before 2014 my blog was just around with me posting every now and then, with no real goal or aim for my blog other than a place to vent my frustrations. It wasn't until late 2014 that I hit my actual stride when it came to writing. To this day I'll say that stretch is still my greatest periods for this blog. I produced some very nice pieces that are still being bought up til this day by people who come to my blog randomly.

I've learned a lot from my time blogging, with a lot more being learned within the last year. So with that being said, I'm going to share some of my thoughts about what I learned from the past six years of blogging and how it helped me out in terms of growing and becoming not only a better human, but also a better blogger. So let's jump right into it shall we?

1. Blogging Is Life. | Blogging, or writing in general, is an extension of one's self. So in theory when you write from the heart, someone, somewhere will feel what you are saying. The number one thing that I was told to do, not only just in life, but when it comes to blogging, stay true to self. Never worry about what the next blogger is doing and concentrate on the message you want to convey. If you want to blog about your life and share details with the masses, then do that. If you want to put on for the internet and live a lifestyle that escapes your currently reality, then do that. Whatever you want to do, be true to that and people will feel you, not everyone, but most will. When you do that you not only create awesome content, but you also allow room for growth and maturity. So when I say blogging is life, I mean it for the simple fact that I put every bit of how I'm feeling at that moment into each post, nothing less. I leave it all out there so not only I feel better, but for someone else going through the same thing can understand that they aren't alone in this world.

2. Figure Out YOUR Style. | Every single blogger has their own style of writing and what they choose to write about. There are so many types of blogs out there, it's impossible not to bump into someone that writes about the same thing you do. From entertainment, music, fashion, traveling, new mom blogs and even personal blogs, every topic is literally covered. But that doesn't matter as long as you find out what you want to write about and how you want to write about it. People feel the confidence in anything that you do, so if you write with confidence, style and just completely owning then you will be fine. But figuring out YOUR style will open doors to many different things in the blogging world that will help you evolve as a writer and a person. Remember, even Michael Jordan came into the league as just another basketball player, it's up to you how much work you're going to put in to become great.

3. Be Vulnerable. | This is a big one, to me at least. People like to get online and put up a front and act like nothing is wrong; I mean that's how they are typically in real life as well. It's a certain craft in combining honesty, vulnerability and confidence in writing, and not everyone can do this. But when you find that writing style that allows you to connect to a core group of people, then you will have succeeded in being able to talk about certain aspects of your life that you wouldn't normally talk about. I do this all of the time, from relationships to my battle with depression, there isn't too much that I won't talk about. Now what you won't ever know about my life is the intimate details of each situation. Now while I don't shy away from talking about my problems, I don't reveal them too much because I believe in privacy for the most part. But there is a way you can talk about what troubles your mind and not have everyone and their mama in your business. It's up to you if you want to be vulnerable with your blog, and it's quite alright if you don't. Adding an element that shows that you are indeed human and that you experience feelings just like the rest of us can take you a very long way in this blogging game.

4. Write Often. | When you figure out how to translate your life through your style of blogging, the next task is to write, and write all of the time. One thing that most people who are new to blogging think is that each and every single thing that you write has to be geared towards posting. That's hardly the case, in fact I have about a good thirty blog posts that will never see the light of day for the simple fact they are personal, but I needed to write about it. Writing is therapeutic for us bloggers and writers for the simple fact that we convey emotions through paper and pen better than verbalizing it. With me, thoughts run rampant through my head all day everyday. A million and one ideas float through my head every single day, I write a lot of mobile notes and I still lose a lot of ideas because I can't get to them in time to write them down. My point is that you never know when that idea turns into a full fledged blog one day, I have a draft folder with a couple hundred different ideas, and I visit it frequently. Sometimes I write a name of a post down with nothing in there, sometimes I do research and have a whole bunch of content and no tittle. Sometimes both sit in that folder for months at a time until I put two and two together. You never know when those ideas will become reality, so write it down and store it for later, it might end up being worth something one day.

5. Schedule Something. | Even though it's encouraged to post at your own pace, make a schedule and stick to that. Reasons being that people will get into the groove of reading your blogs and will develop a habit for coming to read your posts. I started the year with a vow to post a blog 5 days a week for the whole year, and here it is July and people will text me at 9am asking me why my post didn't pop up on their screen when they came to my site. I've had a lot of people tell me that they read it on their morning train ride to work, over a cup of coffee before they start their day, or late at night when they are winding down for bed. Either way you never know when people are going to check out your content, so why not help them out by posting at a certain time so they at least know you have it up for them to read.

6. Experiment. | This is important because you don't want to become too one dimensional in your posts or your blog in general. I had this problem because all I ever wrote about it seemed like was relationships and that's not what I want to be known for. I mean granted I deal with the opposite sex way more than the average male, I also do other things during my 24hrs so I want that to be highlighted as well. I also majored in mass communications, so there's parts of me that wants to explore that even more now that I have my own working site and it's becoming bigger and bigger. It allows me to experiment with some things and switch it up from time to time, and let me know what I can take into 2016 and what I can't take. Either way, doing all of the aforementioned steps opens up the possibility of experimenting, do you see the trend here? 

7. Network, Network, NETWORK! | This is something that I just started doing this past year and it's all thanks to The Blogging Elite & Black Bloggers United. I've stated countless times on this blog that without either of those groups, I would probably still be floundering around at the idea of not having too many other bloggers supporting me. I think we were kind of scattered before this and now with both of those groups we're starting to come together more. But networking is important for the sake of becoming a better blogger, it's like having that teammate that supports you and pushes you to be better at the same time. I've met a lot of bloggers that have been supporting me like crazy and genuinely reading content and giving back feedback. Although I've been blogging since 2003 and writing since before God knows when, I always believe there's room to grow, especially within blogging. You will always need those examples of what to do and not to do, and with blogging there are tons of people that are willing to lend you the knowledge that they either learned the hard way or through someone else teaching them the ropes. Reach out and ask for help, it's all around our nice network of people.

8. Promote Properly. | I say properly because you can promote your blog at all the wrong times, I use to do this clearly. Ever since I've maximized my enormous friends lists on all of my accounts, my numbers have shot up dramatically. The only thing I'm mad about is the fact that I should have been doing this sooner, a lot sooner. But learning what time of the ay to schedule your posts and using automatic link posters are critical. I know that I post my latest string of blogs at a certain time of day and I get steady daily numbers from it. In addition to that I also have hootsuite that automatically tweets all of my links to my blog over a months time at key times as determined by hootsuite. One day I'll actually invest money further into that so I can maximize my page views even more, but now I'm content on the system that I have. Just make sure that you post and let everyone know about your blogs when there are actually people up and coherent.

9. Keep It Personal & Professional. | One day you words will become immortalized, whether you choose to believe or not. OK that was a stretch, you might delete your blog one day and never return to it lol. But in the even that you do not delete your blog and it stays around forever on the net, you should have sense of professionalism about it, regardless of content. If you convey your words correctly and come off in a manner in which you seem to want to get your opinion out without sounding like a complete douche, people will be fine with it. And at the same time you don't want it to become something that's clutter with a bunch of advertisements and routine blogs that don't seem genuine or as personal as the reader would like. I write to convey personal struggles as life lessons for someone who thinks they can't overcome a situation, therefore all of my posts are going to come off as personal. Most people get lost in the business aspect of it too much while searching for that almighty dollar. That's fine and good for them, but if you want to stay true to yourself and spread that wisdom like you have been doing, then keep it personal. At the end of the day you don't want to come off as an idiot who only yells at their readers "agree with me"!

10. Live Life. | The last thing on the list is probably just as big as the first one on this list, live your life. That's where you get all of your inspiration from; don't get so caught up in trying to make money and be like the other bloggers who put in the work to be where they are. You aren't them and they aren't you, living your life and doing you may take you in a completely different direction from writing in general. Worry about your lane and drive your car at the posted speed limit for your city because while you may be on a country road, everyone else might be on a highway. Plus you'll have so much more to talk about that other people might not be doing with their life. Never forget why you started and you'll be just fine with the results you see from your blog.

Ok I think I've talked you guys enough to death about this, but those are some of the things that I've learned from my first six years of blogging. I'm pretty sure I'm going to crank out the rest of the list at a later time because I definitely extended past the 10 that you just read. Below are the some top posts from over the years and statistics from the blog that I wanted to share with you guys, hope you enjoyed this post. Until next time.

My Ten Favorite Posts:

My Top Ten Blog Series:
(Click the link above to view each entry.)
1. Couple of Date Ideas | 2345 Views
2. H.E.R. | 1714 Views
3. Rants & Raves | 1464 Views
4. Blogs About Friends | 1414 Views
5. My Favorite Rap Artists | 1326 Views
6. Book Reviews | 846 Views
7. Wanderlust, Part 1 | 702 Views
8. The Forgotten Poems | 555 Views
9. A.A.A. | 258 Views
10. Line of Questioning, Vol. 1 | 234 Views

My Top Posts By Page Views:
3. Hard Work, Work. | 801 Views
4. November 30 Day Challenge | 795 Views
9. Wanderlust, Part 1 | 702 Views
10. My Queen, You're Not Done Yet | 693 Views
  1. Congrats on the blogiversary! yea six years in a long time to be in the game! lol maybe collectively with all my blog changes in probably at 3 years

    1. Yea it's been a long time here on this blog, I'm pretty sure I need to check out some of your older content.


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