The Evolution of Your Blog: Aimless, or Deliberate?


Have you ever read through your first few blog posts? If you're anything like me, you've probably taken that trip down memory lane and cringed, laughed and reminisced fondly about your early days as a blogger. Hundreds of blog posts later, it's very likely your look, writing style and content have changed dramatically. Practice makes perfect, right?

I read an article recently on how people like Kobe Bryant have become elite masters of their craft not just through practice, but through deliberate practice. In short, they set goals and don't let themselves quit until they've achieved them. For Kobe, that means aiming to make (not just attempt) 800 jump shots in one practice (!) For fashion bloggers, this is such a great perspective to have when you're in the trenches of life while consistently taking your blog to the next level.

When you take this perspective, every time you touch your blog is an opportunity to improve as a blogger. In a world where blogging can easily take a backseat to everything else in our lives, we need all the inspiration we can get to stay focused. Otherwise, we’ll find ourselves in that all-too-familiar rat race of ‘getting a blog post up because we feel guilty that haven’t blogged in awhile.’ Aimless blogging.

Being deliberate means taking the effort to do things differently – to do them better – every time. That means learning from your past posts, from your research, from your observations of the blogging landscape, and from whatever might be currently influencing your life. It means asking yourself questions like:

  • What did you like?
  • What did you not like?
  • What would you do differently the next time?
  • Is there someone or somewhere out there you can learn from?

It means doing the legwork to apply those observations for your next post. Posing differently for your outfit posts. Weaving a more colorful story together around why you love dressing for fall. Getting your social media updates – complete with hashtags and the correct brand name mentions – just right. Sending out your post at a specific time you know will get a lot of page views.

Blogging deliberately works wonders when you’re doing the things you hate doing for your blog. For example, I’m not a huge fan of SEO and keyword tagging. It’s a complex discipline and Google/Bing/Yahoo are constantly changing what it means to have a good search ranking. However, I know it’s important for my blog to show up in the first page of your search results. That keeps me in check, and helps me stay sane when I’m taking the time to make sure my photos and blog post are tagged appropriately.

Blogging deliberately makes sure all of the small steps – from the enjoyable to the tedious – pile up into something big you can be proud of down the road.

Have you been blogging aimlessly or deliberately lately? If your last few posts are very similar in look, voice and feel, that could be a good indicator you’re blogging for the sake of blogging. I’d love to hear from you on ways you get reinvigorated. What inspires you to blog deliberately?

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6 Responses

  1. Sinead

    This is a great post – I find that I don’t dedicate enough time to blogging. I spend all day in front of a screen, so when I get home – as much as I want to practise my photo editing and writing – I just can’t focus. Setting small goals means I can space the work out – words one day, images the next. Set a goal of a post a week (or two) until I can define my style and it becomes much more natural!

  2. Joy

    great article…. i am so happy i discovered the blogging community. For a long time I was unhappy and lost. I didn’t know what my passion was but I stumbled upon blogging and I am so in love with it. 🙂

  3. Onianwah

    You couldn’t have said it better Jess. I would say it has been a mix of both for me and having readers ask questions is huge reinvigorator for me.
    I do cringe at my earlier blog posts and I know that I have come full circle but still I am not where I want to be. This is mainly because blogging always takes a back seat to my daily job.
    I really should be deliberate about it (I am deliberate about it sometimes and I see the returns, I just get caught up in daily life and then become laid back about it again).

    Lagos, Nigeria

  4. Krissy

    I, personally, go through phases. It’ll be like 3 weeks of intense yes-ness to the bloggozor and then I fall off for like 3 or 4 days. Currently seeing how not blogging or updating any of my social media for 4 days is affecting my traffic, though, and so learning from that lesson.

    This whole blog journey is just a big mish mash of lessons I tell ya! Super fun though!!