Welcome back to my “Ask Me Anything” series. I try to answer FAQ every once in a while and something I get asked a lot is “Do I ever consider giving up blogging” & “how do I stay motivated?” I am guessing it’s other bloggers asking this question. It’s a good question because it’s hard to stay motivated to blog it an industry that is very saturated and always changing.
How do you stay motivated to blog?
1. Because I love it.
The first reason I stay motivated to blog is that I really truly love blogging and love this job. I have not ever considered quitting blogging and don’t see myself ever quitting, although I could see maybe the blog turning into more of a website down the line (when I become boring and have no more stories to share!)
I think you would really have to ask yourself “Do I love to run my blog?” If you aren’t sure of that answer, then I can definitely see how you might lose motivation to continue.
First trip abroad, pre-blogging, 2009, literally used to sleep illegally in parks, hitchhike, and couchsurf. For food? 50 cent baguette from supermarkets. I didn’t start my blog until the end of 2013.
2. Because I feel secure as a blogger.
It’s a hard nut to crack into the travel industry and it can seem like an uphill battle that you just never seem to reach the top.I remember having just 7 readers a day when now I have over 10,000 per day. It was a struggle but I feel like I have passed that “omg am I going to make it” thing. I’m not some famous travel blogger like the many that I look up to like The Blonde Abroad or Adventurous Kate, but I feel like I’ve surpassed all the goals I have set for myself, and that’s really what matters to me.
There are an approximate 1.2 million travel blogs. When I started my blog four years ago, I think this number might have been a lot lower. After a year of blogging, my blog became one of the top 50 blogs based on traffic with just 65,000 UMV per month. This is impossible now. Travel is the “cool” thing to do, people love it, and travel blogs are getting read more than ever. So, starting out it can seem like a daunting task to become a “top travel blogger”.
I was lucky in a sense that I started early when I did, but that’s not to say you can’t still become successful. There are new blogs popping up all the time that are amazing and have something unique to say – so they are becoming top blogs.
Because I was a little lucky to start early, and have grown my blog to the point where I feel good where I’m at, that keeps me motivated to just continue without stress. I don’t feel like I have something to prove or like I need to get my name out there.
3. Because I need to make a living.
Money is always going to be a motivation. I left my job as a nurse to do this. I’m going on 30. I need to have a retirement plan and be able to support myself with this as my one and only career. I don’t want to return to nursing, although I would if I needed money. I have a backup plan in place. If I don’t make money, I can’t keep blogging as a full-time job. That’s some motivation, there!
I have said before on this blog, I did start it with the intent to make an income from it. I love doing it, but it’s a job for me.
That means that one motivation for me is money – and I don’t think it’s bad for bloggers to admit that. We work so hard putting our lives online so people can learn from our travel mistakes and it’s only fair that we earn an income from promoting brands we use and love along the way.
4. Connecting with people.
What is life is we don’t connect with people along the way? I love the people I meet online. I know that sounds lame but in this day and age, I think it’s acceptable, right? I’ve made so many friends from blogging like Alex, Mindy, and Silvia. It’s like how you have your childhood friends, your college friends, and your work friends – well, I work on my couch, so my blogger friends have filled that spot.
I met Anna (right) in Kerala when she joined the GoMowgli trip I co-hosted and she ended up staying with me in Goa after and is who I hired to redesign my site last year.
Trish, a firecracker who I met in Israel is someone I always stay in touch with now!
Fellow blogger Colleen came here to stay and met my dog, Huck, before he passed away. She wrote this amazing blog post about him which is my favorite thing on the internet. Goosebumps.
It’s not just connecting with other bloggers and online entrepreneurs, even more so, it’s connecting with the people who read my blog and that I met on social media. When I go to a new town, people who follow my blog from that town get in touch and offer advice on where to go, offer to meet up, and sometimes offer me a place to crash.
5. Because it’s something I’m proud of.
I don’t want to toot my own horn here, but I am proud of myself for making this blog. I didn’t know what a travel blog was 4 years ago. I didn’t know how to make a website or what marketing and sales were. I have learned so much and it’s been self-taught. There are many resources online to learn about blogging which I’ve read and a lot of what I learned has been from mistakes I’ve made.
I NEVER saw myself as an “entrepreneur” and sometimes don’t even think what I do is real or that people really are going to read what I’m writing. It’s never stopped being a “pinch me” moment. It motivates me to keep writing and keep working hard to see where Hippie in Heels as a brand can go.
6. Because it allows me to see more of the world.
My blog has brought me life opportunities that have been so amazing and unforgettable. I have been to places like Jordan and Israel because of my blog. I have been flown to Bali to be paid to surf every day. It’s literally a dream job and the more I see of the world, the more I want to see.
I’ve always been interested in traveling and had “wanderlust” before it was a word. This blog is my gateway to that and I don’t see myself stopping!
If you’re interested in starting a blog, check out my article from last month on how to start one from scratch. I won’t pretend like the market isn’t saturated, but if you have a unique travel style and a unique voice or are a great story-teller, then you should 100% give it a go!