Q + A // staying motivated to blog

For me, the key to being motivated to blog is to keep it enjoyable.  I want my blog to be something that I enjoy doing, not a hassle or a chore.  I figure if I'm enjoying creating the content, it's probably more likely that readers will enjoy it too.

I'm not the kind of blogger who has every post planned out for the next two weeks.  I often don't know what I'm going to post the next day.  I'm not sure if that's a good thing... but so far I have never been able to come up with a system that works for scheduling things out more than a week in advance.

  Create regular features that you enjoy writing.  Things I love Thursday, Friday Wishlist, Weekly Wrap-up, etc.  I like to do Q&A posts once a week and Remix Archives posts on the weekends, and then fill in with outfit posts, recipes, and other posts.  Some people have every day of the week scheduled with a specific type of post.

  Read other blogs that inspire you.  I enjoy reading other blogs that inspire me to be a better blogger.  Whether it's great features, improving my photography, getting better at writing, etc, reading other blogs that are high-quality can inspire you to get better at blogging!

  Find something you enjoy posting.  Don't blog things just because everyone else is doing it.  If you don't like doing outfit posts, you don't have to do them!  There's no rule out there stating you have to post certain types of things.  The blogosphere is full of readers with an infinite amount of varying interests.  You're a totally unique person, so let that shine through in your blogging.  You'll enjoy blogging more if you're being yourself, rather than trying to be someone else just because they're a "big successful blogger."

  Take time to brainstorm.  Take the inspiration that you've gathered from other bloggers and re-imagine it in your own way for your blog.  Create a notebook for your blog where you can write down ideas for new blog posts or new features.

  Interview other bloggers!  Not only is this a fun way to feature other bloggers, but it's also a great way to gain more readers!  Oftentimes when you feature a blogger, they'll tweet about the interview telling their readers to go check it out, so those people who weren't aware of your blog have now been introduced to it via the interviewed blogger.

  Don't stretch yourself too thin.  A sure way to feel burnt out about blogging is to put too much on your plate.  I oftentimes find myself wanting to do everything, but I know that if I do my own blog will suffer.  Find a balance between taking on projects and knowing how much time you need to create quality content on your own blog.  This might mean turning down opportunities now and then, but ultimately your sanity is more important.  This is especially important for those of you who blog on top of a full time job or school.  Know that the most important thing in life is your relationships, not blogging, and if blogging is keeping you from giving enough time to your relationships, dial it back a bit.

  Remember the real world!  Step away from the computer, take a technology-vacation, just get away.  It's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of the internet, and all its trappings... pinterest, twitter, facebook, social sites, checking email, writing emails... I always find that when I take a break from blogging and step away from the laptop, I regain some of my sanity and my life recalibrates.  Don't let blogging make you into a crazy person!  It can do that, I promise.

  Think about things about which you can share your expertise.  Makeup maven?  Share some of your favorite makeup, or do a tutorial on how to get a specific look.  Love doing hair?  Share hair tutorials, or your favorite products.  Love to cook?  Share your favorite recipes.  Love where you live?  Feature your favorite local spots.  DIY queen?  Show us how it's done!  The list can go on, but you get the idea.

  Create a space that inspires you to blog.  As an artist and graphic designer, creating a comfortable and inspiring space is important to me, and my blog is no different.  One of the first things I did when I started my blog was to customize my blog design to reflect my personality and make it more aesthetically pleasing.  No offense, blog platforms, but your standard blog layouts?  Kind of ugly and boring.  Luckily there are tons of tutorials out there that you can google if you're up for DIYing your design, and if you're too overwhelmed, there are tons of blog designers who would be happy to help you create a beautiful space!

  Get inspired by the seasons.  There are always a ton of fun things to share with each season.  Whether it's your favorite new collections from the runway, fun DIY projects for seasonal holidays, recipes

  For me, what's most important in keeping motivated is blogging for myself.  There will always be people who either love or hate what you're doing (some more vocal than others).  If you try to change how you blog every time someone voices an opinion about what/how you're blogging, you'll go crazy. Your head will become a knot of other people's opinions mixed up with your own desires for what you want to blog.  Be honest, be genuine, and if someone doesn't like what you're doing then they are free to leave and find other blogs they do enjoy!