I Should Have Participated in the Challenge in a Month With Only 30 Days.
Okay, so that statement is obviously a joke. I’m just thinking that this will be only my 22nd post in the challenge on the last day to post, and I will fall 9 short of my goal. If October only had 30 days, I would only be eight short.
The Power of Community.
I have felt so blessed and lucky to have been a part of three of the best blogging communities out there, and have had the opportunities to not only share my own posts with them, but to read their posts and pick their brains for ideas and inspiration. Thank you specifically to the following Facebook Groups that have given me feedback and joy: The Ultimate Blog Challenge, T.L.C. Club for Bloggers, and Syndication Elation. The first two have mostly introduced me to friends and inspiration, while Syndication Elation has brought me information and skills. The members there are business owners and professionals and sometimes their posts are a bit over my head, but I always find information that helps me to grow and learn.
Content is Everywhere.
And I do mean everywhere. I found myself seeking content and ideas from all facets of my life for this challenge, and found many interesting things to blog about. I cannot thank Michelle Schaeffer (http://michelleshaeffer.com/) enough for her support and endless ideas and also her constant posting and reposting of the group’s blogs. She made this a doable and inspiring month for me.
A special thank you goes out to my mom who not only guest blogged for me this month, but also provided me with a ton of ideas for posts that made it into the lineup and onto the back-burner for future posting.
I Love to Write.
Having the opportunity to write nearly every day really renewed my love for the craft of writing. I found myself reading books and blogs on writing as well as doing more personal journaling and word-seeking. I actually dreamt about blog posts a few times as well! This challenge has made me realize that although I do not have the content or time to post every day, I do need to make the most of the time I do have and fill it with this love of mine.
Planning Ahead is Everything.
I started of the challenge with my first few blogs either written or planned out and outlined, and it is no coincidence that I was on target and posted every day. As I got going and had less planned, the posts became later and later, and then not posted at all. This challenge taught me that blogging is just like life- I need a plan to succeed.
I Still Prefer Quality Over Quantity.
All through this challenge I tried to post my best work. Towards the end as I fell behind I thought about posting little things that did not mean as much to me or take as much time to write, but thought better of it. I am lucky enough to have readers subscribed to my blog and “likes” on my Facebook author page and did not want to compromise their time or attention with posts that I did not give a lot of thought to. As I was reading other blogs in the challenge I was thankful to all of the bloggers who shared that mindset. Reading quality content always makes this girl happy.
Full Time (Job or School) Will Get in the Way of Posting Every Day.
For the first time in a long time I am a full-time student, and I realized that a full-time schedule of work or school will definitely get in the way of blogging every day. Unfortunately there are still only 24 hours in a day, and when you eat up eight of them sleeping (optimistically) and another eight working or studying, it leaves precious little time for fitting in all other pursuits. For me, sometimes blogging fell by the wayside.
This Will Not Be My Last Blogging Challenge
The last thing this challenge taught me is that it will surely not be my last. I was inspired by the community and the challenge itself and will try again another time. (It will most likely be a time when I am not taking 18 credit hours in school).
To close, I would like to congratulate all of my fellow participants in the 2011 Ultimate Blog Challenge. Whether or not you posted 31 times in these past 31 days or not, you are a winner in my mind for trying!
Thank you for the smiles and the insight along the way, and best of luck to you all!