March 13th 2018
Because without people who were dedicated to their dreams, where would we be?
Growing up, my mom always taught me to never quit something in the middle of it. That is a value that I have taken to heart for a lot of my life. Another value instilled in me is that success comes from hard work and not everything I do will be a success. My mom was never the one to fluff my ego. She would praise me when I accomplished something but she wasn’t a “participation trophy” kind of mom.
I think that is where I got my work ethic from. That and watching my dad wake up at 5 AM every morning to go to work. I was taught that in order to achieve dreams and succeed, there has to be dedication or the whole foundation will crumble.
Starting a blog was something I chose to do on my own and there technically isn’t a “quitting in the middle” when it comes to blogging. However, there is an misconceived expectation from some, that if you just write stuff and promote it that it will do well just because you tried. I have met people like that, both in the realm of writing and outside of it.
You can say you’re a blogger or a musician or a photographer or an artist, but without actual effort your foundation crumbles. If you dream to be a musician but never put out a song, or you only put out a cover every month or two, odds are you aren’t going to get anywhere quick unless you’re unbelievably astounding. If you claim you want to make a career out of blogging, posting once a month, then disappearing, then posting twice in a week the next month just to disappear again, is not consistent and will also not help you get very far either, at least not in a timely manner. (also, this isn’t shade to anyone who does that, it is just a fact in terms of SEO that frequent new content on a page increases growth and search credibility and such. But I will go into that later!) Unless, again, you are utterly astounding at writing to the point where people will give you a hard pass for not writing a lot or you already have the network to keep your blog relevant to search engines even without a lot of frequent content.
And it is easy to get discouraged, but that doesn’t mean to give up on your dreams or put less energy into them. Maybe that musician used to post a cover a week but only gained about 60 followers in a year, so they decided to put less energy into their work, hurting their chances of further growth. Maybe that blogger felt they weren’t seeing the likes or views or growth they wanted so they just figured they could post whenever and it wouldn’t matter. You don’t see growth without effort and without content.
This isn’t just me telling you not to give up either! This is me telling you some straight marketing facts! When you put content out, especially on the digital front, the more work you have to show, the better. It all boils down to SEO, search engine optimization. I have almost 200 blog posts posted over the past 2 years (mostly over the past year). Not every post has been a huge hit with tons of views and likes, but I have noticed that since I’ve been posting more, I have gained more traffic! This traffic is not only from WordPress but outside sources like google searches and sites that have linked to me. The more I post, the more search terms I show up for. The more sites that link to me as a valid source, the more credible my site appears to google. Thus spurring growth.
Now I am telling you all this because I want you to see that dedication spans far beyond wanting something and labeling yourself as that thing. Dedication is working towards what you want even when you’re exhausted, uninspired, crazy busy, or not seeing results. Dedication to a dream is working hard even when you don’t see a lot of return and simply because you love what you’re doing.
I am not telling you to funnel everything into a dream that may just be destined not to pan out, but I am saying that a dream will never work out if it is constantly placed on the back-burner. Don’t quit your day job in pursuit of a dream or lock yourself in a studio until you get good, just keep practicing and make time for the dream you have to get some attention.
Up until a couple of weeks ago, I was working 2 part time jobs in social media marketing which took up about 40 hours of my week, I also have a long distance relationship that takes up at least one day of my weekend most weekends. However, I find time to write 4 blog posts a week because I pre-plan so I am always ahead. I use time at night when I have nothing else to do and write if I’m feeling creative. You don’t need to write 4 blog posts a week in order to be a good blogger, but you do need to practice writing (and reading!).
Even if you take one night a week to work at the thing you are dedicated to achieve, you will already be taking steps forward towards making your dream a reality!
Overall, I encourage you to remember that dedication gets you further than excuses. Take your passions to new places and see what a little hard work can do!