12 Ways to a Better Blog—and a Better You—in 2012

2011 was an incredible, exhilarating year for me and G&G. I was so fortunate to have been invited to participate in the IFB conferences in February and September, to speak at Blogger Brilliance, to travel to Barcelona for an MNG by MANGO photo shoot, and more! You’d think with all that excitement, I’d be on blogging cloud nine (which I’m sure is lit completely by Gucci phosphorescence, but that’s another post).

Actually, I was elated to have so many fantastic opportunities come my way last year, but after all that FUN, that HYPE, that TRAVELING, that WRITING, that PICTURE-TAKING while balancing a full-time job and a life, I was exhausted. Which equated to less time in the gym, and more weight on me. By November, I was alternately happy and cranky. And not able to fit into some of my favorite pieces. Boo.

What’s a style blogger to do when she’s burned out on…herself?

Feeling self-conscious, mentally taxed, and pulled in 10,000 directions, I did the only thing I could do: I took a little break. A semi-hiatus. I blogged when I felt like it. I took photos sparingly. I stopped pressuring myself to burn all my candles on both ends, at the same time—which gave me time to re-group, rest, and come up with this list…

12 Ways to a Better Blog—and a Better You—in 2012

1. Accept yourself as you are right now.
Think it’s soooo bad? Just remember there are people with ailments, disabilities, or who’ve had accidents that would be grateful for a functioning body like yours. Acceptance is crucial to self-love. This is a tough one, but to move forward, you have to nip appearance-induced depression and self-loathing in the bud. Accepting yourself doesn’t mean you have to love the way you look—it just means that you aren’t beating yourself up about it. But if you don’t like how you look and feel right now, realize that it’s not going to change unless YOU change.

2. Got goals? Write them down.
It has been proven that you accomplish more when you actually write down goals and can see them. I actually did this a couple years ago, and you know what happened? I ended up on two IFB panels last year! I swear!

3. Get out.
Outside, people! Into nature, without your tablet/phone/iPod, etc. No matter where you are or what season you are in, disconnecting and taking a stroll in fresh air does wonders for the soul. You’ll feel better after a 30-minute excursion, even if it’s only once a week.

4. Pump up your playlist.
If the last sentence of #1 speaks to you (um, it’s SCREAMING at me!), give yourself the kick in the pants to get moving by psyching yourself up with music. I know it helps keep me moving in the gym. Find a new anthem using Shazam. I can’t tell you how many dance tracks in my fave playlists were discovered via Shazam. It’s brilliant.

5. Try a trend you’ve never thought you could pull off.
Barring trends related to hairstyles/color, what’s the worst that can happen? Nothing! Clothing, makeup, nail colors—they’re temporary. Think you can’t mix prints? Oh yes you can! Think you can’t do a half-moon mani? Practice makes perfect. Stop limiting yourself and live a little. Give yourself permission to try, and even fail. But at least try.

6. Remember: Everything is a potential post.
That trend tryout above? If you love it, there’s a post. If people looked at you like you had three heads, that’s a post too. Everything—from going to the doctor, to memories associated with specific fragrances or outfits, to how a new beauty product has changed your life, to how a life event changed your style—all potential posts. So what if other people have written about them! They’re not you and they’re not writing from your experience.

7. Tackle new technology—apps, devices, social media—anything.

Poptop bracelet discovered on Pinterest.

Take some time to play, and you could discover…

  • A time-saving invoicing app like FreshBooks (it simplified my freelance invoicing and expense management!)
  • A way to purge all those DMs in Twitter at once through Social Oomph
  • An awesome weekly blog Twitter chat like Blog Trends Chat
  • Inspiring imagery and delightful DIYs on Pinterest
  • A better blogging platform like WordPress.

Don’t let fear stand in the way of learning and efficiency. The more you explore, the more you are likely to discover. And the more tech-savvy you are, the more marketable you are in the career world.

My Build a Better Blog page has lots of resources, especially for those looking to jump from Blogger to WordPress, a tech move so many fear unnecessarily.

8. Beg, borrow, and barter.
Desperate for better blog photos or a new blog template, but lacking the cash to make it happen? Reach out to friends/family/contacts with the skills you need and propose a trade. Get a new logo in exchange for free ad space on your blog. Polish a résumé for someone in exchange for a photo session.

What do you have that others appreciate? Leverage your talents…ethically, of course.

9. Say no.
As your blog grows, so will inquiries from those interested in partnering with you. Don’t accept every offer just because it means more money than you had yesterday. Too many ads, paid content, and giveaways muddy the look of your blog, your personal brand, and your intent. Know what you stand for and be selective. Realize that the offer on the table has probably been extended to dozens of other bloggers as well.

Honestly, the chances of you quitting your job to blog full-time are nil. There are a few bloggers who have successfully made a career of blogging, but they’re not holding the fort down based on ad revenues alone. In fact, most are represented by a talent agency (like Digital Brand Architects, for example), and their income streams are multifaceted. By all means, follow your dreams, but know that it takes a ton of work, a real plan, and a very serious approach.

10. Stop trying to be BIG, and just try to be you.
This is basically an extension of #8. Who doesn’t want to be as famous as Aimee Song, Kelly Framel, or Jane Aldridge? Who doesn’t want to be courted by designers and flown to fashion shows? It’s the universal dream of fashion bloggers, and a reality that most of us will never have. Stop obsessing over your comments and traffic and followers and fans, and focus on being you. When you focus on sharing your unique talents and perspective, and when you genuinely engage with bloggers who are similar to you, your numbers will grow—but more important are the rewarding connections you will make.

11. Share early, and share often.
Tweet, retweet, and share inspiring or informative content from other bloggers via all your social media channels. It’s a great way to establish yourself as a go-to person, grow your reach, and have your own content shared. Share new blogs, DIYs, tech tips, or say thank you or send a congratulatory message. I promise, people will notice and respond.

12. Help someone. Or something.
None of us has gotten to where we are today without help from someone at some point. Whether you were mentored in your career, nurtured by your family, or given a tip through a tweet, you MUST pay it forward. Help comes in all forms, from writing a recommendation on Linked In, to holding a door for a mom struggling with a stroller, to finding a home for a stray animal, to letting another blogger know about a helpful plugin. In the blogosphere and in real life, when you can or you are asked, you should help others by sharing your knowledge, time, talent, and wisdom. It will make someone’s day and make you feel good too!

And the bonus: JUST DO IT!
Similar to #2 above, in order to make your wishes come true, you actually have to DO SOMETHING! Do something now, today, to start that business, get that job, run that race, or take that vacation. If you’re aiming for a new career or a better job, polish your Linked In profile or create an online portfolio of your work. Want to run a race? Find a group to train with at your local gym or through Meetup.

Whatever it is that you’ve always wanted to do or change, there is no time like right now to get started. Every day is a gift. Make it count.


Which one of these tips speaks to you? What are you going to do or change in 2012?


Comments

  1. says

    While I’m not glad you burnt out, I kind of am– because I figure if there’s any blogger who can bounce back from burnout, work through it, and still come out ahead, it’s you. Like I’ve burnt out so many times over the years,

    A lot of these are great ways to build a better you for any girl–not just the blogging one. As such, #9 really spoke to me. It’s been on my mind a lot lately, and how much better it feels to start to push myself more in to “ME” territory than not.

    And #11– lawd yes! This is true in the blogosphere, and I’m sure I’ve slacked off on it this past year. Paying it forward is so vital to the community, to your blog, and to your own sense of accomplishment. One of my little deals has been trying to share more posts via Google +, retweeting, more link ups, etc. So that when I DON’T have time to comment, at least I’m showing support in other ways. And commenting– trying to do that more, too!

    Happy 2012, darling.
    Ashe @ Dramatis Personae’s latest post: The Dramatis Personae: Wedding Winter WonderlandMy Profile

    • says

      Thank you, Ashe! Yes, we can ALL survive burnout!

      Your posts really speak to me as well, that’s the honest truth. You are such an amazing writer. So thank you for cranking it out and leaving me love notes here too. You rock.

  2. says

    I love this post, there are so many great tips here V! After the craziness of Fashion Week in September, I was exhausted too, so I can only imagine how you felt doing that on a larger scale throughout the year! I absolutely with #2, writing goals down. I still write down all of my to-do lists in a little notebook that I always carry, and I use it to jot down blog ideas too. I find it so helpful to have it written down so I have something to refer to or check off my list once it’s accomplished.

    Also, #6, everything is a potential post- I’m just starting to realize this! I used to think that all my posts had to be outfit posts, but moving to a new city/apartment means I’ve had less time and opportunity to take outfit pictures, so I’ve had to move in other directions posts-wise. I’m okay with that though, because it allows me to talk about other things I like/enjoy!

    And finally #9- this is always a good reminder, to stop comparing yourself to other bloggers. It definitely happens from time to time but like you said it’s important to remember who are!

    And sharing on social media- I’m trying to be better about that! Sharing more link love on Twitter and Google + is one of my goals this year.

    Thanks for an awesome post V! =)
    Nnenna’s latest post: Wishlist: Jason Wu for Target!My Profile

  3. says

    Lady this is an excellent post – It kind of put me back into reality for a moment. I’ve sort of have felt like I’ve been in a funk lately, confused – all that stuff. This post really got me thinking and sort of grounded again. Thanks for that!
    Kirstin Marie’s latest post: navyMy Profile

  4. says

    I personally loved #1. Anytime that I can get any reassurance that is all OK and that I am enough and what I am doing is enough-always motivates me. While I got a lot out of this post in it’s entirety, I think writing down goals is a great suggestion. I have them all in my head, but you are right, there is something powerful about writing them down, being able to list them and view them for inspiration/motivation. Great post, thank you.
    Veronica of Best Of Palm Beach Consignment’s latest post: Vintage Find: Antique PinMy Profile

  5. Mary Anne Hoben says

    Great post – great ideas! There are really 13, though – 2 number 7′s. I like the first #7, about technology. I’ve been working on my social media and it’s hard to know which things will work.

    • says

      Hi Mary Anne, thank you!

      EEEEEEK! You know, as an English major, I SUCK at math. And apparently as a copy editor, I do too. You’re the only one who noticed. Thank you! Fixing it now!

  6. says

    Glad you are back! It’s always a pleasure to read your great tips and straight forward advice. All of these points speak to me in one way or another, but it’s a great reminder just to be yourself, go out and have fun! Oh and I really want to pump up my playlist. I like to work in silence these days and love music. Doing a workout with my favorite music is a great to stay on top of that and get my workouts done!
    Sylvia @ 40PlusStyle’s latest post: Bring on the colorful coats – 11 coats to brigthen up your dayMy Profile

  7. says

    I LOVE this post Vahni!! I have achieved one of my technology fears recently, and that was a move to WordPress, which I am very pleased with so far! My favorite point was #9. It is so important to be comfortable in my own blogging voice, and if opportunities come, then great, and if they don’t great too, because I am having a good time and maintaining my authenticity.

    One of the things i would like to try in 2012 relates to #5. I always envy bold colored lipstick on ladies, and even buy it sometimes, but never wear it because I think it looks ridiculous, but I am determined to give it another try this year.
    Rocquelle’s latest post: Mixed ReturnMy Profile

  8. says

    Vahni – great post and so timely for a number of us who are feeling the pull. I love so many of these posts, especially the one about staying true to you. That’s the only way blogging will continue to be fun and worthwhile. Blogging for everyone else is just a waste and will easily burn you out. Thanks for the tips! – Katy
    Katy’s latest post: How to wear short hairMy Profile

  9. says

    Hi Vahni, what a great post! I am trying to work on technology stuff this year but I’m already hitting roadblocks which is so frustrating because I have no idea what I’m doing. Oh well, I’ll keep at it. It was so great to meet you in September and I’d love a chance to see you again! Happy 2012 to you! XO, Jill

    • says

      I know this feeling! You have no idea how many times I’ve been playing and have HOSED MY BLOG to the point I’ve had to call in an expert! All I can say is practice makes perfect, it really does. Just back your blog up before you really start tinkering in that area.

      I’m a stubborn moose of a girl and for me, the only way to learn is trial-and-error. I’m too impatient to read the directions if they are longer than two paragraphs. So I do experience frustration and there is a TON I haven’t mastered. But you know what, I know a hell of a lot more than I did two years ago. And that’s because I tackled the tough stuff. Failure is not always that. Sometimes we do learn in the process.

      Hope to see you again in 2012, my dear.

  10. says

    Just loads of great ideas here. I know I took a bit of a break this fall–not because I was physically depressed but because I was in an unhealthy place emotionally for reasons unrelated to the blog. Oddly, I thought if I didn’t have anything positive to contribute that I just better step away for a while. Now that I’ve returned, I’ve wondered if my blogging friends might not have lifted me out of the funk…if I’d just had the courage to share it.
    Terri’s latest post: Return of RagsMy Profile

    • says

      Aw, so sorry you were out of sorts, Terri. Glad you are back. And you are right, though, had you shared your feelings I guar-ON-teeee your readers would have lifted you out of that funk. That’s the best part about blogging…the support, the conversations. It’s why I keep coming back. :)

  11. says

    An amazing post as usual vahni! The number that speaks to me is #9, be myself. I need to think less about being like other blogs and focus on what i love. I do love my blog and I’ve been a little obsessed with it recently, but it’s hugely time consuming and I need to pace myself. Like most bloggers I want to make it big NOW, but the reality is the big bloggers have been around for a long time.

    Lots of food for thought!
    Heather Fonseca’s latest post: Rooftop GothMy Profile

  12. says

    Great advice, V.

    I’ve redesigned my layout, gone through another refresh of my blog roll, added followers, and also finally picked up a domain name. You can now reach my blog via kyotomaiko.com, or .net, or .org, or even .info! I’m thinking seriously of printing business cards.

    I’m still not planning on selling ad space, although I would very much like to start attending certain trunk parties and the like for brands I already spend money on…
    Kionon’s latest post: LL Bean Camp MocsMy Profile

    • says

      Yay for blog tweaks! Now will you help me with mine?! Just kidding. It’s in the works. But good on you for tackling it.

      Whatever it is that you want to do, go for it! Especially since male fashion and blogging is less saturated, I’m sure lots of labels would love to have you. Print those business cards and do it! You don’t need ad space to get where you want to go. You have a brain.

  13. says

    Just do it – the best advice, and the simplest, and still the most difficult to keep!
    This is such a great post, Vahni, thank you so much for getting it all together! I saw it earlier today and thought “I will read it tonight so I can properly pay attention” – the fact that your posts make me think that is proof that you practice what you preach. You really are so accessible and helpful! So glad I’ve found your blog. :)
    Madeline Quaint’s latest post: RecolourMy Profile

  14. says

    This list is great; I am adopting the writing down bit and will write down my goals for this year. You are absolutely correct when you say that nothing can change unless you change it and every day is a gift and an opportunity to do just that. I’m glad your hiatus has refreshed and obviously inspired you. HAPPY NEW YEAR V!
    Jamillah’s latest post: What I Wore-Two new faves!My Profile

  15. Mads says

    Brilliant post! Have been doing this blogging thing for a year now and sometimes forget to just enjoy the ride. I am all over number nine!

  16. says

    Great post! I was actually talking about this to one of my co-workers this evening. The best part of my blogging experience has really been that its forced me to try things that I wouldn’t normally wear. It’s also given me access to people who I wouldn’t otherwise have access to. It is a lot of work though. When I get home most of the time I just want to chill and most of the times I do just that, regardless of my posting schedule. I’ve also stop stressing over what google analytics says.

    I hear you on the weight thing. Remember I was supposed to be dieting to lower my cholesterol. Well somehow I am now 15 lbs *coughs* 20lbs heavier. I will be posting my “full moon” photos soon. I know other women are dealing with this weight thing and you are right, we have to be happy with who we are now. (-:

    Number 11 creates good karma, period. As for number 12, I have some postings coming up that address some how tos and what to knows. (-;
    One Woman’s Style Evolution’s latest post: My Shopping StrategyMy Profile

    • says

      Hi love, thanks for popping over! Yes, I agree that blogging is great for encouraging fashion fearlessness. I have to say that my own style has definitely changed as a result. I definitely am branching out.

      RE: The weight thing. Lord, we just have to figure out what works for us and do the hard work, I suppose. I’m pretty dang sure I’ve put on 15 myself. So let’s just focus on progress and not what we haven’t accomplished, right?! We can do it!

  17. says

    You know, ever since I first discovered your blog back in 2010 (God, that seems like ages ago now) I have always looked up to you. To me, you are the epitome of the “blogger I want to be when I grow up”.

    Ever since that first day, you have been my biggest mentor as a blogger. It isn’t just your style and writing that keeps me coming back – it’s your honesty, integrity and strength. It’s the fact that you tackle your challenges head on and always grow from them as an individual AND share the lessons you learn with each of us. It’s the fact that you remain grounded even though you have already had successes most of us will only ever dream of. You inspire me in so many ways that i can’t even list them all.

    You already know that I’ve been struggling with my own direction as a blogger these past fews months but it goes beyond that to my personal life and I’m still not past that yet. Part of that certainly has to do with #1 in your list and for some reason #6 just seems out of my grasp. Instead of everything seeming like it’s a post – everything seems like its utter crap lately. Reading this, though, helps me realize that I AM doing a lot of the right things… I just need to work on #1 a bit more and then hopefully things will start to click again.

    Enough rambling from me – thank you, again, for your wonderfully valuable insight, V. If /whenwe ever meet in person you are getting a huge hug and a few rounds of martinis from me!
    Beautifully Invisible’s latest post: Blog Event: Your Best Posts of 2011!My Profile

    • says

      Oh, B, what a sweet and touching comment. I am so honored by your words, support, and friendship—even if it is only virtual at this point. It would be my fondest wish to one day FINALLY meet in person…and collect those martinis!

      I know you have been struggling, and the bad thing is that we are so much lamer in our own minds that we are in reality! So we self-sabotage, and a lot. That’s a struggle I think many, many women have, no matter what it is they are striving to be. But I know you, my dear, are a strong, smart, and determined lady. Look at what you have achieved with Full Time Ford…and that was just a little spinoff, right?! Hello TF Interational and beauty products arriving at your doorstep! And your Blogger-to-Wordpress tutorials? Like how many people have you helped with those?! So right this second, I want you to remember and celebrate your achievements. You are a class act! So many of your posts on BI are thought-provoking and insightful.

      You really should take all the time you need to feel better. But sometimes sharing your struggles with your blog friends can be very helpful. It reconnects you and encircles you in a ring of support that may just make all the difference. You HAVE GOT IT, honey. If your head is fuzzy, get some fresh air and clear it. IF there is a man giving you problems, you send him to me and I’ll take care of him! As far as family stuff, personal life stuff, oh, have I had a gut full in the last year myself and I decided after the 18,000th betrayal that I just do not give a s*** anymore. As I’ve said to people in my circle, it’s THEIR sin, not MINE. Humph.

      Thanks again for your comment, honeybun. Know that I’m rooting for you over here. And hey, you know what kept me connected when I couldn’t be bothered with full blog posts? Instagram! I know you’re on it. Jump in and have fun with it! And if you need to talk, call me. Text me. You’ve got my personal digits, and if you’ve misplaced them, you totally know where to find me.

      xoxo

      PS: I know you’re going to rock 2012. I know it.

  18. says

    Hey V, I know I haven’t commented in forever but I;m still here, still following :)
    Yet another great post, you really are an inspiration.

    I had a break for just over 6 months this time last year, I had a lot going on in life at the time and I just didn’t have the energy but after a while I really started to miss the community. I’ve changed a lot and learnt a lot but I totally agree that a break can do a great deal of good.

    Julia xo

    • says

      Hi sweetie! Thanks for dropping me a line. Glad to know you are still out there, and are well. Yes, a break can be very good sometimes…and as long as we’re still learning, we’re still living!

      Happy 2012…may it be your very best year to date!

  19. says

    This is an amazing and thorough list, I totally agree about … EVERYTHING! I use #2 for life in general it’s a good one to hold close. As for trying new things, last year I decided to join meet-ups to aid me in my career for inspiration and learning (non-blogging related), but still geared toward fashion/ tech, it helped me greatly and eventually in blogging.

    I also must check out this Freshbooks, as I’ve been seeking another programme like this. Lately, I have been so busy and not able to comment as much as I used to, so Re-tweeting, Facebook sharing and Instagram has been very helpful in that area. “A, hello and still support ya, type of shoutout.” Thanks V!
    Madison :)

  20. says

    I think that the second I said to myself, “This is my hobby, not my job,” blogging became more enjoyable. Sure, it’s good to set guidelines but at the end of the day, this isn’t my job so I might as well have fun.

    On that note, I am burnt out lately. I’m planning on taking a break and coming back, as the Quakers say, “When the spirit moves me.”
    Courtney’s latest post: California Here We ComeMy Profile

  21. says

    Awesome post V!! This were great, great tips! I found that writing goals down has helped me accomplish so much more than just having them float around my head. I think it really helps to break down the big goals into small, tangible steps so as you cross the little things off, you stay motivated to do keep going. And that bonus one – just do it, that is my motto for this year. Whenever I feel intimidated about trying something either on my blog or for my blog, I just suck it up and tell myself to just do it! :)
    Mj’s latest post: Beauty Blast: Three Great Makeup Products from NeutrogenaMy Profile

  22. says

    Not only do I love you for your great blog posts but for the community you foster and create. Reading the comments for this incredible post is like reading a who’s who of some of my fave bloggers. Thank you for sharing yourself with us via blogger and for your tremendous talents and support. Here’s to “seeing” more of you in 2012. xo.
    Bella Q’s latest post: outfit post: Leopard, Floral, PaisleyMy Profile

  23. says

    You know a lot of things you are talking about my hubby and I have talked about. I also wasn’t going to get caught up in stressing out on whether or not I blogged how many numbers of times per week because it became to be more pressure than what it’s worth. I use to stay up til 2am to try and get a post up and I just can’t do that anymore due to my schedule during the week. I had to decide that I wasn’t going to get caught up numbers and just be me.
    Good health and being thankful for what God has blessed me with puts so many things into perspective.

    Great post Vahni, inspiring.
    JTwisdom’s latest post: Do you think You need to be a size 2?My Profile

    • says

      Hi JT, thanks, lovely!

      I used to miss a LOT of sleep myself due to blogging, but now I just have to roll with it. These days my brain is so full of stuff, and you know, sometimes we don’t feel 100%. The only way to keep blogging is to do it on YOUR terms. My Klout score has plummeted 20 points in the last few months. But I have to think of it like this: if I were given one last day on this earth, would my Klout score even cross my mind?! Yeah, like NO!

      Like you said, good health and remembering the incredible blessings so many of us have is really all that matters. You’ve got a great perspective!

  24. says

    Wow great post, you have such great tips on improving a blog! I just discovered your blog through IFB and am so glad that I did. I love that you say you shouldn’t get too caught up in trying to be popular because it is so easy to get obsessed with checking how many followers you’ve gotten or comments. Also, I see that you reply to a lot of comments and I love that! I always do the same because I think the best thing about blogging is communicating with other bloggers who share the same interests!
    I look forward to seeing more posts from you :)
    Karissa’s latest post: The Handmaiden’s Tale | Blair WaldorfMy Profile

    • says

      Hi Karissa, welcome! Glad you found me. Thanks for your comment…and yes, I do reply to a lot of comments. Not as many as I would like, and not as swiftly as I would like, but I try to touch base because your comments matter and I appreciate them so much!

      Hope you’ll keep coming back. Got another BIG post dropping Monday. Stay tuned. :)

  25. says

    I think I need to try and tackle some more new technology in 2012 but all these tips are good to be able to refer back to. I love your “build a better blog” page. So many useful posts!

    • says

      Thank you Sophie! I figure, why reinvent the wheel? I think the more bloggers help each other, the better off we all are, on our blogs and in the real world.

  26. Arash Mazinani says

    Excellent post! It’s great you posted this, even though many of the points you mention are nothing new we, well at least I often forget about them. I often find myself going through phases of being content with posting regularly and just doing ‘me’ and then frantically panicking because my blog seems a little bit ‘different’ to others.

    One of the worst things that generates this unnecessarily paranoia is in fact twitter. My timeline is filled with other bloggers in the beauty/fashion niche. So you often see a lot about the fantastic giveaways, brands they’re working with and how many subscribers they have so in comparison it can often make your own blog seem a disappointment. I also love the way on twitter you can just jump in to conversations but I find that more and more other bloggers when you do try and interact just don’t reply. Which, in my opinion kind of defeats the purpose of twitter and the openness of it all, a lot seem to only interact with other highly successful bloggers. If you’re not spam and you take the time to tweet me I’ll always tweet back because that’s what makes twitter so great. If I want closed doors go to Facebook.

    Having said that there are still bloggers out there that are amazing and always helpful and a joy to interact with. Coming back to the original points I think that it’s important to be consistent with what you do. Imagine how amazing a resource your blog would be if you’re still plugging away after 4 years! Or even a year!

    Also we often compare ourselves to a fortunate few elite bloggers then compare ourselves to them. But often fail to realise our own successes. This was highlighted this week, my friend commented on my high page ranking, something I’ve never even considered. He was looking at my blog with an SEO friend of his and it came to their attention. Also my image consulting trainer commented at how amazing my blog was, when I compare it to what other image professionals have to offer the UK I realise what I have achieved. So although I might not think I’ve been successful compared to other fashion bloggers because I’m not being coveted by PR companies when I take a step back I have actually achieved quite a lot.

    Sorry for the ramble lol….also can’t believe I’m late to the party with this one.
    Arash Mazinani’s latest post: Mens Spring Summer 2012 Trend Guide Part 1My Profile

    • says

      No worries about the ramble! I appreciate your comments, always, Arash.

      It’s good for us to acknowledge what we HAVE achieved. And yes, when you keep plugging away (I’m going on 6 years), it is amazing how you learn and evolve. Even if we never achieve anything more than brightening someone’s day or creating a body of work we love, that’s pretty big in my book.

  27. says

    Love this post. No matter how many times I read interesting post and inspiring words like this one, it is still good to be reminded on what its important and how it shouold be done. I mentioned earlier over @ Krstina/PSS, how much I appreciate and love both of yours tutorial posts. The energy and good will for helping others and sharing the knowledge with others (les fortunate in mentioned department) is the thing I admire the most. Thank you very much on that :)
    No chic, Sherlock!’s latest post: Morning inspirationMy Profile

  28. says

    Your posts always make me think ‘Heck, yeah! I can do it…!!’. I think sometimes we all need a little reminder of these points to stop ourselves drowning in a big black hole. Recently, I’ve had a blogger telling me about how she’s been treated by some other ‘successful’ bloggers and it was awful to read. I was very happy to be able to share an experience I had when I asked a very successful blogger to look over my blog and give me some feedback, which she did almost instantly and gave me loads of hints and tips. Yes, that blogger was the lovely, inspiring, open, all-round good gal – YOU!!!! I’ll never forget that and want to thank you once again for being so inspiring. Have a great weekend Vahni!

    Emma xx

  29. says

    I adore this post, I can tell you wrote it from the heart. You remain my favourite blogger for honest and refreshing advice about blogging and I will be recommending this post to all my blogger friends. Well done on taking your time out – I do this a bit myself when I take trips and only update a travel tumblr of my favourite pictures. Point 10, not trying to be big and being yourself if my favourite. We often forget why we started our blogs in the first place, that was for the passion and fun of it, no?! Happy New Year V!

    http://www.styleonthecouch.com
    StyleOnTheCouch’s latest post: The French ConnectionMy Profile

    • says

      Thank you, lovely! Such a sweet comment. I did write it from the heart, because from now on, I’m only posting when it comes from the heart, not because I want to keep my numbers up or because I feel obliged to. My numbers are down, but life goes on!

      Happy New Year to you too!

  30. says

    I just found your blog after one (of many) of my up-all-night-surfing the internet sessions. :) I have to say that what I’ve read so far – I have loved. I think it’s so great that even with the obvious amount of attention and traffic that your blog gets, you still are able to #1 – produce quality, informative content and #2 – interact with your followers. So many blogs I visit have authors who never bother to reply back to people – which I think is sad…after all aren’t they the reason you have a blog? I only hope than if/when my blog gains more of a following I am able to be as inspiring to others as you are. Keep it up! :)
    LaToya’s latest post: royaltyMy Profile

    • says

      Hi LaToya…thank you! What a sweet comment. I do try to stay engaged with my readers because I know how disappointing it is when you take the time to comment and then get no response!

      Welcome to the G&G family…please visit again soon!

      ~V

  31. chris says

    My greetings from France! After visiting your blog, i could not leave without putting a comment.
    I Congratulate you on your blog!
    Maybe I Would Have the Opportunity to welcome you on mine too!
    My blog is in french, but on the right is the Google translator!
    good day
    cordially
    Chris
    http://sweetmelody87.blogspot.com/
    I invite you to visit Blogspot Directory
    I am a member of Blogspot Directory and I think this community aussi Could you interest.
    To find out, click on the link below: http://world-directory-sweetmelody.blogspot.com/

  32. says

    Better later than never. I wish wish wish I’d found your website sooner. I’ve read only three of your posts and already gain some valuable info that would of helped me avoid mistakes made in the past. Now I know, so it’s just a matter of working out the kinks. Thank you for all of the blogging wisdom you’ve shared and hopefully will continue to share.
    Kalyca Romeo
    http://romeostyle.com/
    Kalyca Romeo’s latest post: Video: Japan Vogue March 2012 Presents Matador.My Profile

    • says

      How did I miss your comment? So sorry Kalyca. I may be like a year late, but when you write a comment as nice as that, it deserves a response. So thank you…I do hope my blog has continued to be helpful for you.

  33. says

    A friend of mine told me I needed to check out your site and I am so glad she did! I am a new blogger as of my first post on 1/26/13 and I am a total sponge right now. I look forward to reading more!

    • says

      Well hello Carrie, and welcome to G&G and the blog world!

      Thank you for your comment, and thanks to your friend for the recommendation. It’s always so rewarding to know some of my ramblings have been helpful to others. Blogging is a crazy thing. It can change your life in so many ways. I have always been a hobby blogger…well since I do generate some revenue from it, let’s call it a part-time business. But because it has never been my primary source of income, I have been able to really let it grow at its own pace.

      That’s the one piece of advice I’d like to give you: post when you really have something to say; never post just for the sake of it. Blogging is supposed to be FUN! Try not to force yourself to adhere to a grueling posting schedule, which is easy to do. Fashion blogging is extremely competitive, and a lot of new bloggers feel the pressure. I’ve found that the more expectations I have placed on me and G&G, the less I enjoy it, especially since I have to carve out time for it AFTER my 40-hour work week.

      But good luck! I took a quick peek at your blog and you look like you’re totally on the right track!

  34. says

    Hi V,

    Thanks so much for this post.

    About two years ago I took a job at a marketing agency, I loved the work but it totally consumed my life and I abandoned my blog. A few months ago my contract came to an end, I was desperate to get back into blogging but I felt irrelevant as contacts I had from the world of blogging had all moved forward and achieved so much.

    Recently I’ve decided to stop feeling sorry for myself and take action; I’ve given my blog a totally new look and expanded the content range to include marketing, art, design and much more. It’s funny that in #6 you mention “how a life event changed your style” as this is the subject of my latest post, STYLE OVERHAUL http://hannahdomingo.wordpress.com/2013/03/22/style-overhaul/

    Your advice has made me think that I need to be a little more realistic about my goals and stop trying to compete with my piers. I realize now that while blogging may not turn into a fabulous career it will help me build my online brand, share my marketing expertise and hopefully secure some freelance clients.

    Thanks again.

    Hx

    • says

      Hannah, thank you for your comment and for tweeting this post. It’s always a treat to know one of my posts has been inspirational or thought-provoking for others.

      And yes, feeling sorry for ourselves gets us absolutely nowhere! So good for you for taking the reins and making things happen.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Lovely Links and Links à la Mode Posted on January 22, 2012 by Shopgirl Clockwise from top left: Earlier in the week, Fashion Foie Gras kindly re-posted my tips on surviving your first (or second, or third!) Fashion Week; Rachel Phipps was also kind enough to include the same post in her Weekly Love post*; I am addicted to the beauty blog Into The Gloss and love PinkBow’s take on their regular Top Shelf feature; Still crazy for statement necklaces and Jennine over at The Coveted does them so well; I’m still obsessing over the Topshop spotty trousers from Wearing It Today and, almost as if they’re following me around, this week I spotted them (no pun intended!) over on The Man Repeller; and finally, Grit and Glamour’s 12 ways to be a better blogger is this week’s must-read. [...]

  2. [...] your age or stop when more is really way too much! Whether your fashion goals for the year are to be a better blogger, feature top notch photos or be a fashion savvy dresser, surely there is a link or three here to [...]

  3. […] “Accept yourself as you are right now… Just remember there are people with ailments, disabilities, or who’ve had accidents that would be grateful for a functioning body like yours. Acceptance is crucial to self-love. This is a tough one, but to move forward, you have to nip appearance-induced depression and self-loathing in the bud. Accepting yourself doesn’t mean you have to love the way you look—it just means that you aren’t beating yourself up about it. But if you don’t like how you look and feel right now, realize that it’s not going to change unless YOU change.” Vahni of Grit & Glamour […]

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