5 Ways Blogging Can Change Your Life

It all started in March of 2008 in a small apartment in Lubbock, TX, sitting on a little red couch dreaming about possibilities as I started blogging for the first time. That's where blogging started for me. It took me by surprise and it took me on an amazing adventure! I'm getting all nostalgic, but what I need to tell you, my dear readers, is that I'm taking a step back from blogging. This is my last post for now, so I want to make it count. I want to share with you a few steps for how to let blogging change your life like it did mine.

1. START before you're ready. 
If you are hesitant about starting a blog, let me suggest one thing... just do it! I know your banner isn't as cool as you wanted and you're not sure your photos are edited right, but if you keep waiting for the perfect moment it will never arrive. Be honest. Be real. Start where you are with what you have and work your way to where you want to be. Once you start writing and sharing photos you'll find your unique writing voice and the special way you take pictures! Blogging has taught me this lesson, but it applies in so many areas. Meet up with someone and start a friendship, try a new recipe that looks difficult, plan a trip to a new place. You never know what could happen and you'll wish you'd already started! 

2. Remember Blogging is a "Jumping off Point"
Blogging isn't only about blogging, it's a jumping off point for so many amazing opportunities. Because of blogging I've had the opportunity to interview some of my favorite artists, writers and business owners and even meet some of them in person! I've had the opportunity to work with some of my favorite brands and support amazing causes. Sharing photos of my paintings on my blog allowed me to gain new clients that I never would have met otherwise!  I love that blogging gave me the opportunity to write this column in Artful Blogging and do so many other amazing things. Blog because you love it, but be on the look out for new opportunities too!
3. Learn to SHARE your life with others (on and off screens).
Blogging means putting yourself out there in a new way. Sharing little bits of your everyday life online is an amazing feeling, but it is also a lovely tool to teach us to share life off-line. Share your story, perspective and ideas with those around you and build friendships with the people you do life with. Blogging friends are amazing but they can never replace the ones who are there for you in person. 
4. Keep your PRIORITIES straight.
Blogging takes a lot of time, doesn't it? There's time spent coming up with topics, researching ideas, trying out DIY projects, taking photos, editing them, writing content, formatting posts, adding links, etc. It's amazing, rewarding and it's so fun, but sometimes it can become overwhelming and demanding. There were times when I felt like I HAD to finish a post each day! Remember, hearts come before screens. Remember that your family and friends are more important than making sure your daily post is ready and perfect. Be honest with your readers and honest with yourself about what works for you so that you can keep your priorities straight. 

5. Let CREATIVITY spill into every area of your life.
I started blogging as a painter wanting to share a "behind the scenes look" at my work. Eventually I added a few sewing projects and recipes I'd tried, and my very first attempt at gardening. I discovered that creativity can be part of everything in life. I wasn't limited to being creative on a canvas. I could also be creative with cooking, writing, gardening, sewing, photography, even my blog layout! Let blogging show you that being creative is a lifestyle.

I'm still sharing my creative life through "Insta-blogging" (@specsandwings) as it fits my life best at the moment, but blogging will always hold a special place in my heart because of all that it has taught me. I may get back to blogging eventually, but for now, I wanted to leave this space with some of my favorite blogging lessons learned. So, here I am again, in 2015, writing on my little red couch. It can be hard not knowing exactly what the next step is or what the rest of the journey will look like, but I'm still dreaming about possibilities! Thanks for reading my articles and blog posts. I have loved sharing with you!  

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