Life has thrown me a curve ball recently; first my Grandmother had a stroke (she is on her way to recovery and should be home, later this week) and my brother suffered a severe allergic reaction, needless to say it has been 7 days of worry and hospital visits but it sure has put things into perspective. Yes blogging is both my job and passion, but in a time of crisis I can assure you it is one of the last things on your mind. I did also get to thinking what would I tell myself five years ago, when just starting out and what blogging mistakes do I vow to never repeat.
1, Life happens - a tough lesson I have learnt over the years, work/a hobby is not everything and there will come a time where you will have to prioritise. I of course do not know what is important to you but for me it is my family and our health - if I need to step away from my blog for a few days so be it, that does not make me nor you a bad blogger nor person. It is important to keep in mind that sooner or later, life has a way of smoothing things out and eventually things will fall back into place.
2, A day off is not a failure - up until this year I would beat myself up if I didn't have several posts live each day, sometimes missing out on sleep and dare I say it, life. That is no way to live, yes keeping to a schedule is important but as point one suggests life may get in the way. Yes I do like to have posts scheduled, ready-to-go daily but should I miss the odd day here or there, I'm not going to stress myself out over it - heck there are 5,000 plus posts on this site to catch up on.
3, You'll never be fully happy - you may have noticed that I change blog layouts and photo backgrounds fairly regularly, this is not a criticism of any of the wonderful blog designers I have worked with, rather it is because I get bored easily. Sooner or later you will too, be it with your blog name, content or photos but the good news is that on the most part you can change them around with ease, and worrying about such aspects shows that you truly care about your blog. What I will say is that you shouldn't let it grind you down, behind every blog there is a fickle person wondering what they could do next to improve their site.
4, Stop comparing yourself to others - it is so easy to look at another person be it a blogger or not and wish you had the same level of success as they do, or the picture perfect life for that matter. What it isn't easy to see is what goes on behind the scenes to become successful: the hard-work, comprise and general grit. You can't measure your level of success based on what someone else has achieved, by all means look upon others for inspiration but don't waste time wishing to be someone other than yourself.
5, It's okay to say no - don't worry about offending a brand or company by declining the offer of product/sponsored post/event invitation. If you don't feel it is fitting of your brand/style by all means say no - every opportunity should be mutually beneficial and if you don't put your blog/you first no-one else will.