blogging · Life · Positivity

Blogging When Life Is Hectic: Where’s the Balance?

sleepy-duck
I’m just as tired, but not as cute as this little duckling

Sooooo…it’s been a couple of weeks since my last post–quite a lot has happened since then. I originally intended to only be away for a weekend because I knew that work would be crazy for those days but things seemed to take another direction.

 

Working in retail sales, September marks the beginning of our busy season. It is at this point that we are ending our third quarter and gearing up for the fourth quarter. You can’t really prepare for it, you just kinda deal with it as you go along. The hours and the stress of the customer-facing nature of the business create the perfect recipe for exhaustion, leaving the mind and body with very little energy for anything else. Since I’d been so excited about blogging in these first few months, I am saddened by how little I’ve been able to produce. I’ve even been upset with myself at times simply because the fatigue has clouded my mind so much.

This is no good. 

You ever been so tired that your mind feels like mush? You ever had days where you’re mentally ready to get back on the horse but your body knocks you back to the ground? That’s how these past 2 weeks have been. Writing has been tough, but I’d resolved to at least make sure that I kept my reading mission going (“F*ck Feelings” is still pretty awesome by the way) so I could have my mind focus on something.

I’m still working to find a balance for blogging when my real life is hectic, and I’m not giving up. I know I’m not the first to have these challenges, and I know I won’t be the last. I also know that I love blogging and really want to grow as a writer so I need the continued practice.

If you’ve ever dealt with this struggle, what techniques did you use to get closer to balance? Did you ever learn to balance blogging with the chaos of your real life, or are you just making it work? Leave me a clue, a sign, or something in the comments.

I definitely need all the help I can get.

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blogging · Wellness

Finding Inspiration In The Midst Of Madness

work-read-blog

Work has been super busy lately. Due to such madness, writing has become more of a challenge–this is my first busy season since starting this blog–but I am intent on finding a balance. I ask in advance that you forgive me for any gaps between my blog posts as I work to find my way. 

~ Keesh

Having become so caught up in my job, I am reminded daily of how difficult writing can be. Before starting this post, I brainstormed in search of inspiration. The biggest problem I have is that when I answer the question “What are you thinking?”, I find that I spend a lot of time not thinking at all.

After dealing with customers for hours, it seems that my mind is set on finding peace in nothingness. Have you ever driven from work and had no recollection of what the drive was like? I mean, you’ve made it from point A to point B but you have absolutely no idea as to how you got there. This is how my day-to-day thinking works sometimes. I go to work and give my customers every bit of my energy and attention. When I get home, I don’t give my brain the attention it needs.

Blogging was meant to help exercise my brain, but this wasn’t always the case. Before starting my current job, I buried myself in books because reading was such brain stimulation. Well, I’ve decided to go back to where I started and get my reading mojo back. Instead of reading my usual novels of suspense and drama, I’ll be taking a different approach.

My current mission is to adopt a healthier mindset. I want to better position myself for success and I know that the proper mindset is essential to making it happen–where the head goes, the body follows. WORK. READ. BLOG. This shall be my life for the next few months. I’m looking forward to the peace that reading gives me and I’m sure it will inspire my writing.

What will I be reading? I’ll share my books in the next post.

blogging · Current Events

Trust The Process: My Second Month of Blogging

I’m nearing month 3 of “Keshia’s Modern Life”and today I’d like to let you guys know what new things I’ve experienced since my last progress report (go ahead and check that out). If I had to choose a theme for this past month, it would be “Trust The Process”. Month 1 was spent getting things off of the ground, but this second month has been about keeping and gaining momentum. Now that I’m off the ground, time to hit the clouds.

Here are 3 things that I’ve learned this month:

NEW DEFINITION OF “CONSISTENCY”

punch clock

My posting schedule has changed A LOT. There were days where I would feel so obligated to the schedule that I’d get caught up in writer’s block–NO TIME FOR THAT. During this second month I came to understand this: I needed to be obligated to my blog content, not a schedule. Now, I don’t judge myself based on sticking to a scheduled time of day for posting; I focus more on the consistency of quality. I may not be able to post at 9:00 a.m., but when an inspired post comes to mind at 12:30 p.m., that is what I will write about. I’d rather wait for inspiration than lose the organic feel. I already punch the clock 5 days a week, we’re not doing that over here.

FINDING MY VOICE

“Keshia’s Modern Life” is about me. It’s based on my viewpoints and discoveries while I adult my way through life. If it’s based on me, why do I have to find MY OWN voice? The answer to this is pretty simple. I’ve had to come to the realization that my charm is found in the way I say things. Originally, I was afraid of being too informal because I didn’t want to lose quality. Now, I feel more comfortable in becoming one with the content. I HAVE TO BE MYSELF!!

AUDIENCE BUILDING

fb 100Let’s make one thing clear: I’M NOT WRITING TO MYSELF HERE! The whole point of this thing is to share my awesomeness with you, and to grow from the awesomeness of your prositive vibes! Audience is key to blogging, and this month I have had to dig deep in figuring out who my audience is. This discovery is key for one reason: If I don’t know who I’m speaking to, then how can I give you what you want? The toughest part of this process has been audience engagement. I love interating with people, but it can be hard to get the audience to continue dialogue (usually done via comments). My crew is growing slowly but surely, so hopefully next month’s update will include my breaking that engagement wall.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: BLOGGIN’ AIN’T EASY!!! You’ll spend a lot of time questioning yourself. You’re going to stretch your mind beyond its comfort zone. You’re going to wonder if you’ll ever reach anyone outside of your bedroom. Don’t be discouraged! This is only a part of your story, trust in yourself and trust in the process.

P.S.

If you’re on Facebook, make sure you click here to follow “Keshia’s Modern Life” for even more Keesh goodness not found on my blog! We officially hit the 100 Fans milestone yesterday!!! Let’s Keep Growing!!

Thanks for your continued support, and let’s see where the next month takes us!

blogging

How I Started Blogging (And How You Can Too)

Since starting this site, I’ve been asked several questions:

  • Why did you start a blog?
  • How do you start a blog?
  • What do you do on a blog?

I’ve covered bits and pieces of this in different posts, but what better way to answer these questions than by putting all of the information into one post? Before I began blogging again, I took some time to research a bit to see what kind of insight I’d stumble upon. Today, I share this insight with you, along with insight based on my own experience.

WHAT IS A BLOG?

If you’re trying to find out what a blog is, you’re likely to do a Google search–I’ll save you the trouble. According to Google, a blog is defined as a regularly updated website or web page, typically one run by an individual or small group, that is written in an informal or conversational style. Long story short, just about any website that you’ve likely viewed can be considered a blog. The site you visit to get your celebrity gossip fix? Blog. The site you visit for fun cupcake recipes? Blog. A blog isn’t some special species that exists in the wide world of interwebs, it’s more simple than you realize and anyone can start one.

HOW DO YOU START A BLOG?

Now that you know what a blog is, you’re probably ready to get right to it. Wait. Before starting a blog, it’s important to ask yourself one question: Why do you want to start a blog in the first place?

I’ve included that pivotal question in this section because I think that the reason has to be established before starting anything. When you ask yourself this question, don’t assume that your reason is lame. I have only one requirement for your answer: Your answer had better be strong enough to keep you going every day.

Here are a few examples of reasons to begin blogging:

  • you need an outlet for your emotions
  • you want to educate others on a certain topic
  • you want to earn extra money (or full-time money) without punching a clock
  • you want to share your artistic talents with other (music, design, etc.)

Why did I start? I began blogging because I was in need of an outlet. I feel like my life’s purpose is to share with people; you never know how your words can impact the lives of others who may deal with similar issues. I’m still in the trenches of creating posts and building an audience, but I’ve certainly learned a lot about the blogging process in a short period of time.

Ohhhh Snap! Now it’s time to start your blog!

For me, setting up the site was the easy part. I’d had experience with blogging before and knew to visit www.wordpress.com to create my blog. The dashboard is easy to navigate and it makes life easy for the first-time blogger. On the dashboard, you will be able to choose from different themes–free or premium–to give your site that snazzy look. Decide what type of post schedule you will have (daily, weekly, every 2 days, etc.). The overall look of your posts will vary based on the blog’s purpose. I like to include a single picture in each of my posts (longer posts can use more), and at some point, I will start to include videos. You can work using the WordPress domain that you create, or you can invest in your own domain name. In my humble opinion, the look and feel of your blog can (and will) change over time so those things don’t matter as much at the very beginning.

Having said all this, I know that easy isn’t easy for everyone and some need a little more help getting started. Whether you need help in the technical department or in finding your “WHY”, I am here to help.

The whole point of this section is this: GET STARTED!!

ACTIVE BLOGGING MODE

Ok. So now you’ve started your blog. You’re all jacked up on the mountain dew of life and you’re just ready to post your life away. Let me warn you now: it’s not all unicorns and lemonade. There are going to be days where you will struggle to fit your blog posts into your already busy schedule. There will be days where you will have no idea what to talk about. The active blogging state is the true test of your commitment. If you don’t really care to be committed to the blogging process, that’s fine, that just means that this entire post may not be meant for you at all. For those of you who, like myself, find purpose in blogging and want to see how far it can take you, these hard times can cause great damage to your confidence.

DON’T GIVE UP!! I started out blogging every single day. At first, it was easy for me to post every day. Once things in my life started changing my routine, it became harder to commit to posting daily. It became harder to decide what I would write about. These days, whenever I find myself unable to find a topic to write about, I just resolve to find inspiration throughout my day. This tactic may mean that I end up posting much later in the day, but it’s always better than not posting at all. I have to remind myself every day that this is my purpose, this is the one thing I look forward to on a regular basis. It’s ok to take a break to refresh and recharge, just don’t break so long that you fall off the horse completely.

The point of this section: Give yourself room to learn the process and to learn yourself in those first months of blogging. Everyone’s experience is different. Allow yourself to feel the process, and you’ll be able to blog in YOUR way. This is how you will find your voice.

WHERE’S MY AUDIENCE?

This is the area that I’m still working on locking down. From my experience, I’ve found that the key to gaining an audience is posting consistently, and posting on as any platforms as possible. WordPress allows you to set up sharing options for most of the major social media networks. I have each of my posts set to share to my Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts. I also share screenshots of each post to my Instagram–I have the link to my blog in the bio. As you chug along on your blogging journey, you’ll get an idea as to what kind of posts your readers like the most. You can share your posts all day long, but sharing means nothing if your posts are not quality.

The point of this section: Consistently post your QUALITY material on different platforms and your audience will grow. Take note of the types of posts that your audience is most drawn to, this will help you KEEP that audience.

The decision to blog was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Since the start of this journey, I have learned so much about myself, my abilities, and how to reach others. You may have read this post and said to yourself, “Yeah, this isn’t for me.” and that is okay!! This post was meant to give insight–a peek behind the curtain–so that you can make the decision for yourself. I encourage you all to give it a shot because you never know what you’ll discover about yourself.

Happy Blogging!!

 

Positivity

What I Learned from One Month of Consistent Blogging

 

COMMITMENT

“Keshia’s Modern Life” had officially hit the one month mark. Time has flown by so quickly, that I really hadn’t noticed the milestone before sitting down to write this post. As soon as it dawned on me, I immediately began to travel through time, back to my first post. I realize that though the month moved with lightening speed, I still had time to learn new things about myself and about blogging.

This blog began as your usual WordPress blog. I knew that I wanted to treat this new blog differently from previous blogs by truly being consistent and actively working to grow my audience. I had started blogging again during a time when I was stressed about so many things being out of my control. A friend of mine hipped me to a free webinar on blogging and I quickly signed up for it. I woke up early–on my day off–and sat on my couch and waited for the webinar to begin. As I took notes during the webinar I had an epiphany. One thing I could control was how committed I was to my blogging. So, what did I do? I invested. I purchased a domain and email address and I knew that I was officially in this for the long haul. I wasn’t going to spend money that I really didn’t have to spare and let it go to waste. This was the birth of http://www.modernkeesh.com. It was also beginning of my new quest for growth through consistency.

That day on the couch set in motion a new way of living. I wasn’t going to just stop at blogging, I wanted to learn about other projects and business ventures where I could make a return on my investment. Never before had I realized how much I want to be my own boss until now–this blog helped me see that. In the past month, I’ve gone from spending my days in mental turmoil and thinking about what I couldn’t control, to brainstorming and finding ways to take real action. I’ve learned how to be consistent in creating content and not letting anything distract me from posting. I’ve learned that if I desire change, I have to physically take action because talking is not enough.

There is still plenty of room for growth. I want to see more growth in myself as a writer and in the content that I create. I want to continue to grow as a person so that I can share even more life experience. If you’re reading this and wondering how I do what I do, it’s simple: I get up and do it. That’s the long and short of it, and that’s what has kept me going strong this month. I now know that I CAN finish something, I just have to commit from the start.