Close
Close

7 Good Things that Blogging Brings

This guest post is by Arsene Hodali of The Good Life? | dancePROOF.

Why should you blog? I can’t tell you. I don’t like telling people what to do, or why they should do something.

Instead, I want to show you a couple of things that, through my own experiences and research, I’ve deducted happen to the majority of people once they start to blog.

1. You become a better researcher

Trust me, I’m the last person I’d expect to find doing proper research. Yet for this post alone I spent an hour on ProBlogger purely researching. I researched past posts to see which did well, which didn’t, and why. I researched to see which topic I could bring a little more clarity to. I researched the comments and archives to see how people responded to each post. And I looked at at least 35+ posts on 20+ other blogs to narrow down the few unspoken benefits that each of them have gained over time.

Basically, I did my homework.

The current me is drastically different from the person I was a year ago. Back then, when I started blogging, I disliked research. In fact, dislike is too soft a word. It reminded me too much of college essays and citations.

But as I got more skilled at blogging, I noticed that in my quest to provide better content, I was spending less time writing than I was researching. And soon research became the back-bone of all my posts, the edge I had over others who were unwilling to put in the time. And in all unlikeliness, I became that which I once hated: a researcher.

2. You become less pushy and more helpful

I reached a point about six months ago where I stopped blogging completely. I stopped because I started getting more traffic and thus started connecting with more people on a personal level. And this scared me.

What gave me the right to tell someone what to do? Nothing. But, over time, I realized that my breakdown was actually a break-through. I realized that although I have no right to tell someone what to do, I do have an obligation to inform others of what I believe is the best solution available, and to let them take it from there. I have no right to tell you what to do. But I do have an obligation to share information that’s been instrumental to me bettering my life, in hopes that you’ll be able to use it to better yours.

The changes become noticeable once you learn that blogging is less the hand of the strict teacher, than of the helpful friend. The teacher force-feeds knowledge, expecting people to learn everything they teach (and quickly), while the helpful friend offers a guiding hand, one which shows the correct path without laying a hand on the peoples’ backs.

That’s why good bloggers learn how to improve the user experience of their sites, why they increase their site’s searchability and navigation, why they spend an inordinate amount of time coming up with the best headlines, why they learn SEO, and why they obsess about all the methods of content delivery. Because the teacher expects you to come to them to learn, while the helping friend seeks you out. Because the friend doesn’t necessarily want to teach, but help with information (there’s a subtle difference).

3. You become a better speaker

I’ve always been a sucker for skills that help us in more than one aspect of life.

Blogging has helped people understand the importance of good communication. It’s shown the ignorant that yes, content is key, but content without voice might as well be non-existent.

It’s shown the geniuses of the world that if they spoke as they thought (non-linear and chaotic), they’d forever be misunderstood. It’s shown them that taking out a piece of paper and jotting down the main points of a concept is not something the stupid and forgetful do, but an act reserved for the wise.

Blogging has shown the world that clarification and simple words matter most. That big words don’t necessarily impress; they confuse. And that taking pride in someone else’s confusion about your message is shameful.

It’s taught the world that a good, clear, strong voice is something to be desired and worked towards.

4. You get your ideas in order

Half the time I blog, I don’t blog for others, but for myself. I blog to find out what my beliefs and standings on a particular topic are.

To publish a decent blog post, you have to go through the research and clarification phases I mentioned above. Once that’s done, and you hit Publish, you get to see how people react to your ideas, whether they agree or not, and why.

Through research, I’m finding information that supports and goes against my ideas and notions, and I’m bettering my understanding of current topics even more. Through revision and proofreading I’m clarifying the ideas, making them less abstract and more concrete. Through blog comments I’m seeing how my ideas and notions vibe with others. And through my replies to those comments I’m seeing my own standing on an issue more clearly.

This is the main reason why I blog. I don’t see myself as truly grasping a concept until I’ve blogged about it.

5. You find yourself

It’s always fascinating to see how blogging and personal development are so strongly intertwined.

I think it’s because blogging forces you to take sides. It forces you to niche if you want to succeed. And thus you go through the journey of finding what your personal interests are, what you’re passionate about, and what makes you the person you are.

When I started blogging I wrote posts that angered or excited people—posts that made people take a side. I blogged with a strong and demanding voice. But in finding my niche, and thus myself, I turned my act around 180 degrees.

I realized that I’m more inclined towards the calm and personal approach. I found that I’m much more at peace talking with a gentler voice, showing people my ideas and why I think they’re whorthwile rather than forcing them upon others. And I found that I disliked separating my career from my personal life. I don’t separate them in real-life (one feeds the other), so why should I separate them on a blog?

Blogging makes you be specific, and take sides. And in doing so, it makes you learn about yourself.

6. You become your own motivator when you’re down

Face it: we all have those days (sometimes weeks) when we’re down. We stop trusting our own skills, our own judgments, and our own ideas. Guess what helps you keep the gloom at bay? Blogging.

Using myself as an example, whenever I feel I’m no good at writing, I open the browser, visit my blog, and read some of my past posts. You wouldn’t believe the power this simple act has on my mood. In reading my past blog posts I realize that I’m not in fact as horrible a blogger as I think I am.

Sometimes your best motivator is yourself, and your past actions. But you can’t start motivating yourself until you start recording your good work—until you start blogging.

7. You become a better writer

This is quite obvious, but so often overlooked. I think it’s because being a good writer in itself has so many titles.

A good writer could be a good conveyor of resourceful information, so that those seeking specific resources find them. A good writer could be someone who abbreviates large amounts of text into one tiny paragraph without losing any content, so that people who are too busy to read get the gist of it. A good writer could be someone who tells a story with emotion—one who connects with the audience on a emotional level. And a good writer can be someone who takes the reader on a journey up the valley of the rising plot, over the hill that is the climax, and finally to the destination that is the denouement.

Every writer has each of the above traits in different amounts. And thus being a good writer is different for everyone because what you believe makes a good writer could be entirely different from what I believe. All the points I’ve mentioned above are what I believe make a good writer, and a good blogger.

What good things have happened to you since you started blogging?

About the Author: Arsene Hodali examines life through whimsical thoughts, questions, and actions over at The Good Life? | dancePROOF. From surviving the Rwandan Genocide to living on two hours of sleep a day, he’s experienced some pretty wild things. To quote a certain hippy, “He’s seen things man.” Outside of whimsical ponderings, you can find him running “Quotes” Clothing. He asks you to ponder life’s mysteries with him.

About Guest Blogger

This post was written by a guest contributor. Please see their details in the post above. If you'd like to guest post for ProBlogger check out our Write for ProBlogger page for details about how YOU can share your tips with our community.

Problogger.net runs on the Genesis Framework

Genesis Framework

The Genesis Framework empowers you to quickly and easily build incredible websites with WordPress. Genesis provides the secure and search-engine-optimized foundation that takes WordPress to places you never thought it could go.

Check out the incredible features and the selection of designs. It's that simple - start using Genesis now!

Comments

  1. Loved reading this! Cool Post. Thanks for sharing. :)

  2. James says:

    Some excellent experiences that can be learnt from blogging. I completely agree that you can learn a variety of new skills and qualities from blogging.

    To be a successful blogger you must devote time and energy into blogging. I worked on writing a blog in my spare time and you wouldn’t believe in the opportunities that opened up career wise. Blogging is a great discipline and can lead to many exciting opportunities.

    You will learn about writing great content, finding ways to solve people’s problems, increase web traffic, learn about SEO and learn about networking.

    Having a blog is a wise move for personal and professional development. I’d highly recommend it.

    Networking with a community is also an important feature of any blog. I am grateful that there’s many people online that are passionate about blogging and online media, because you’ll always learn from others.

  3. Really interesting and unique post. I liked the few like making more research, developing writing skills, and related things. Consistent blogging helps one a lot. But it is not that easy, as has been made out to be. After four months of success i am now tasting downfall, everyday loosing visitors and going down ranking. Many a times i feel like giving it up. Here lies the real test. Many a times real reaons are unknown and we are in the dark. Surviving this darkness is more vital , and for persons like me, such a post woule be of good help and booster. thanks for sharing.

  4. I love what blogging has done for me and people I know. I agree it makes you a better researcher. I admit I started writing awful blogs that were poorly researched and over time I have refined my posts. I have a lot to learn. It is a lot of work and I believe refining my message overtime is worth any amount of effort.

  5. Tilen says:

    very nice post! I can agree with you. Blogging can bring a lot of positive things. And I especially agree that you become a better speaker.

  6. I definitely like this post. I can say that I have changed a lot when I started blogging. At first I was raelly impatient and likes to get the job done fast. But now, I tend to do my job as steady as possible to come up with the best results.

  7. A really good post. This article sums up for me what blogging is about and some of the key befits that can be derived from it. A friend once remarked that you have a totally different attitude when you do something for real as opposed to when you’re just toying with it. In the case of blogging, I believe you take, or start to take, a more professional and thorough approach to both what and how you write which in turn helps you to continue to get better.

    Thanks for a great post Arsene,

    Matt

  8. Thanks for the reminder that research is the basis of any well-rounded article.

    Unless you are an unrivalled expert yourself on a topic, solid research will round out your post. Even if you are an authority, there’s always an different angle, historical background, a divergent view, that can be incorporated.

    And surely every writer has faced lack of motivation at some point.

    Good tips.

  9. Kevin Ocasio says:

    Great points and post Arsene! I especially agree with point #7 “You become a better writer.” After writing so many articles, I find that these days I can write one a lot faster than I used to. Practice makes perfect ;)

  10. Fieg says:

    There is no more fun in doing extensive research, become an expert on the topic, write it down and feeling proud about resulting blogpost. It makes you even feel better when you get positive reactions, more visitsor and more income.

    Thanks for this great post!

  11. Myron says:

    Nice post. Perhaps as a corollary to item 1, I’d add that blogging has the potential to help one become better at listening to and learning from other bloggers.

  12. Tinh says:

    Number 7 is really applied to my situation. Thanks

  13. Tina Thelen says:

    I agree. Great post! I am especially fond of #6. I can tell you that working in a home office does have its challenges, and it can be a less than ideal situation when you are not feeling it. Blogging, writing down my thoughts, searching the internet for pertinent content to add to my site, all help to keep me motivated and on task! Thanks for the great article!!

  14. Jean Richer says:

    Thank you for the great post. I am still fairly new at blogging but I do enjoy it. I just need to get better at it so the more I do it, the better I will get. Thanks again!!

  15. I started blogging about my journey to motherhood as a way to document my life for family and friends to read. I have wanted to blog for awhile and because this would be a personal blog, it would be easy for me to write and it also easy for me to keep it up on a regular basis. I blog 2-3 times a week and have been since October 2008. I definitely blog differently now than when I started. I’m much more reserved now because I’m afraid of what popularity might mean for my family. Let’s just say I’m paranoid about privacy issues.

    One great thing about blogging for me, which wasn’t mentioned above, is that it is a great resource for me. For instance, I know the exact day my son took his first steps. When we had to fill out forms for daycare, I had to look up some of the answers in my blog. It was so awesome!

    Thanks for the post :)

  16. Ces says:

    What an inspiring post! I really hated the research part in blogging, but this post made me see things in a different light.

  17. Billy says:

    Excellent post.

    Point 6 is a great notion. Going back and reading something you’re proud of can have a powerful impact on self-esteem,

    And to point #7, I whole-heartedly agree. Write more and guess what ? – you get better!

    I wrote a post about how Twitter has made me a better writter. Check it out if you’re interested. I formatted it in 10 tweets.

    http://www.pr-vantage.com/twitter/10-tweets-better-writer/

  18. Jackie says:

    I think that blogging has encouraged me to open up and share more of myself with the world. I also think that blogging in general helps people to become better writers and to be more introspective.

  19. This si really good – thanks Arsene . Am sharing this

    Regards Pervara: https://www.facebook.com/pervarakapadia

  20. This is really good – thanks Arsene . Am sharing this

    Regards Pervara: https://www.facebook.com/pervarakapadia

  21. vanessa says:

    Great article. I found myself nodding along to the points. It also made me feel better about my blog, it’s not a big blog but I do love it.

  22. Koen says:

    One important element could be added:
    8) You have history of what you once knew but have forgotten recently.
    I very often cannot remember the details of one particular item and then I can search my blog to retrieve the information and achieve an even higher quality and finish a project much faster.

  23. Great observations, Arsene. I started blogging specifically to gather my thoughts and to find my “voice” regarding active lifestyles and fitness. And rather than just doing it in a private journal, I wanted to put it out there for others to see. I’ve set up blogs for my three kids, as a way for them to practice their writing (we homeschool them). They’re still not into it, but I hope that they’ll warm up to it.

  24. Hello Arsene,
    This is an excellent post describing many of the benefits of blogging. I totally agree that as you progress with a blog you begin to learn more about your topic yourself, giving you the opportunity to learn as well as those who ready your blog.
    I am sorry to hear that you struggled for a while but am now encouraged that you “write for yourself”. Just sharing your stuff can be kind of a healing process. So good on you.

    More and more people are blogging but not many continue to be a consistent blogger….it is to your credit that you stuck with it.

    Best wishes

    Peter Chapman
    Nuclear Blogger

  25. Spatch says:

    I’ve only just started my blog (jarenterprise.net) a couple of weeks ago and i have already started noticing how much easier it is for me to write than it used to be, if only i found writing this easy whilst i was at university

  26. Jerrick Yeoh says:

    once i start to blog, i begin to read other people blog. It not only provide motivation to me to continue blog, it able to improve myself from language writing and speaking. Beside that they make me more and more knowledgeable. It also allow me know lot of other blogger and share experience and issues with them and find solution together. By blogging also able to expand your social network as well.