Chrish has posted an interesting post over at Quertyrash titled ‘How do you tell your better half you’re going to be a pro-blogger?‘ He writes:
‘Was just chatting to a friend and told her:
How do i tell my wife?!! “It’s okay dear, I’m just gunna play on the internet for a couple of years to see if i can make some money”
Somehow, I can’t see my wife going for that…’
I can speak a little from personal experience on this topic. My wonderful partner’s name is ‘V’ and she has been a massive part of my blogging journey in an indirect way. While ‘V’ has never had a blog and rarely reads any that I write – she has been incredibly supportive of me building up this business – particularly in the past 18 months. How did we get to this point? Well to be honest it’s been a bit of a journey and I would give the following advice:
• Take your time - if I’d come out and told ‘V’ two years ago that I was going to quit my job and become a professional blogger she would have thought I was a nutter. Come to think of it I would probably have agreed with her. Our journey towards generating a full time income from blogging has been a slow and gradual process which has evolved over time. I’ve always been up front with her about what I’d hoped my blogging would achieve – but at the same time have not gotten ahead of myself and become delusional about the process. Don’t hype blogging up to be bigger than it is but show its potential.
• Show results and Make Projections - in the early days of my pro-blogging when I was just earning a few dollars per day I tracked my monthly earnings in a spreadsheet and graphed it like the graph on this recent post. The early days were not much to write home about. I’ve written about it previously but instead of just tracking the actual total numbers I made a point of tracking the percentage increases in earnings from month to month. The first 9 or so months increased by these sorts of percentages:
1st to 2nd month – 126%
2nd to 3rd month- 93%
3rd to 4th month – 39%
4th to 5th month- 3.5%
5th to 6th month – 65%
6th to 7th month – 50%
7th to 8th month – 51%
8th to 9th month – 45%
The point is that while the numbers were small at the time I could see that if I could keep these sorts of increases in earnings up that in time the totals could be quite massive. This was the message i kept communicating to ‘V’ – showing the actual results and projections of where it could go.
• ‘Real Job’ – Ever since I started blogging I’ve had a ‘real job’ of some description – at times I’ve had two or three part time jobs. While in time the vision for becoming a full time blogger became more and more of a reality we took the approach that we wanted to be safe and responsible and that we’d gradually scale back my other work as the blogging brought in more income. When it proved itself and reached various milestones I cut back on other work. In fact in the next month I’ll finish up my last other ‘real job’ and go completely full time. I’ve held onto the other job not just for the money (although when I took it on it was good supplementary income) but because it was something I was passionate about and it also gave me something else outside of blogging to focus my time upon (sanity reasons).
• Time Limit/Deadlines – One of the things that ‘V’ and I did that was very helpful was to set some goals and to put deadlines asto when each should be achieved in order for things to progress. I remember at one stage we decided that I had six months to make it work or not. If at that point i wasn’t earning a certain amount from my blogging I would have to go out and get a proper full time job. The goal was sensible (as in it was enough to justify the time I was putting in) but it was also achievable and not impossible to reach.
This was good for us both because it gave us a point in time to work towards. It also meant I had to get very very serious about seeing my vision come into being. I worked harder in those six months than I’ve ever done before. It was good for ‘V’ also because it meant that she knew when this crazy obsession of mine would end if I didn’t make it work.
I also recommend this ‘deadline’ aspect because to be honest there are just times when blogging for money just won’t work and no amount of time and energy will make it do so. Deadlines are good in helping us to put to bed ideas that fit into this category so that we can move on with life and explore other options.
• Involve Your Partner - While ‘V’ does not get involved in the day to day running of my blogs I do seek her advice on a number of different aspects of what I do and have a standing invitation to her to become more involved. I consult with her before spending money, on new blogs that I want to start, on design etc. This is not about getting permission (although I see her as my board of directors in a sense and want to be accountable to her) but also about getting another perspective from someone removed from the day to day of blogging. It also gives a sense of ownership to her which helps a lot.
I won’t pretend that this aspect of my blogging business is always easy sailing – there have been times where ‘V’ has thought I was out of my mind (she was right a few times and I was on others) but the key for us has been to keep the communication channels open (both ways). She has made some significant sacrifices in letting me follow my dreams (as have I) but together we’ve tried to work it out in a way that is both sensible but also gives freedom for some grand dreams to be realized.
I’m interested in others experience and advice. How have you worked through some of these issues? What advice would you give?