It’s my birthday week, so I decided why not post on The Awesome Woman Project (AWP). It’s only been…well, let’s not talk about how long it’s been!
2015-2016 has been exciting for me and my family. While I have been quiet on the blogging front, my life has been anything but quiet, but in a good way!!
Blogging led me into the world of marketing, which seems like a natural career progression since bloggers are already content marketers, as well as journalists, creative writers, graphic designers, photographers, and the list goes on and on.
Between putting all of my focus and efforts into learning the business of content/influencer marketing, and my husband going back to school and finishing out his Master’s degree, I have not had the creative energy to actually blog. While I have been away, I did do a redesign, though! I am really excited about it!
While things in my blogging life were quiet, I had some time to reflect on what blogging means to me, and the purpose that it has had in my life.
I started blogging five years ago on a blog called Adventures of the Triple B’s. My intention in 2011 was to work on my writing skills while also recording my family’s memories. I had just graduated from University and had given birth to my last baby. It was the first time I had ever been a true Stay-at-Home-Mom and I needed intellectual stimulation. What I didn’t know then was that blogging would challenge me to learn a lot more than how to be a good writer.
Blogging empowered me to learn new things about technology. Technology used to be an area that frustrated me because I didn’t understand it. I didn’t want to pay people to do the work for me, though, so I learned HTML coding and some basic CSS knowledge. I learned how to design websites, and how to use adobe Photoshop and Illustrator to design my own graphics. I learned all about Social Media Optimization (Who knew Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird were more than just animals at the zoo?!) and I learned a lot about Social Media Optimization, too. I learned Google Analytics and what all of those terms like bounce rate, uniques, pageviews and the numbers that corresponded to them meant. I look back on how far I have come in terms of knowledge and I am amazed that I was once someone who cringed whenever I had to use a computer.
Blogging has been so much more than just a way to learn new skills, though. It has also been my creative outlet and a way for me to live my life in an intentional way. When I blogged regularly, I had to create new content, which means I had to think about life through a creative lens. I had to fill my editorial calendar and in order to do that, I had to actively participate in life, so that I could write about it authentically.
Blogging is 100% social, and when I sit back to really think about how it has impacted my life the most, this is the part that stands out. I have made friends through my blogging journey. Every month there is a small group of us who either meet up at a restaurant or do a Google Hangout in order to support each other. We talk about the things that we have done and the things that we want to do next. We rally around each other and give each other the encouragement we need in order to move forward with our goals. In the beginning, it scared me when people would read my blog. I didn’t know who was out there, and while I still don’t know who is out there, I wouldn’t know some of the most beautiful women in my life if it weren’t for putting my thoughts out here for the world to see.
Creating AWP has given me a sense of greater purpose. I started it during a time when my life was topsy-turvy with change: my mom was diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer, my husband was healing from a bacterial infection in his spine, and I was taking my son to the doctor every other week for kidney function tests because of the blood disorder he ended up having. All of those things happening at once made me realize that I needed to have a better understanding of who I was outside of the roles I played, because those roles could vanish at any time. My mission went from being a self-discovery mission to being one that wants to inspire other women to step out of their comfort zones and try something new — even if it is scary, frustrating or really hard to do.
Stepping out of my comfort zone to do all of the things that I have mentioned has made me feel vulnerable and unsure at times, but if I stayed where I was comfortable, I wouldn’t have grown as much as I have in the last five years. It has been a long, hard and exciting journey, and it isn’t even close to being over yet. So, my friends, welcome back to The Awesome Woman Project!