I had an epiphany yesterday, a revelation you might say. I realized that I have passed the six month mark of running this website, blog, Twitter, and indie author (to be) experience. It has been one heck of a time commitment, has made me drastically change the way I do things, and has introduced me to a ton of things I have never really encountered before. So I was lying in bed and asked myself if I truly enjoy the path that I have set myself on.
Hell yeah I have.
This has been a journey unlike any other and I am, admittedly, proud that I have been able to stick with it for so long. So many times it would have been easy to tell myself that it doesn’t need to be done or think that this might all amount to nothing. But I have held myself to standards I didn’t even know I could have and have been as consistent as I can possibly be. And it has paid off! So, from the last six months, here are the best parts of this adventure - the ones that keep me going.
Writing. A lot. It has taken me a long time, longer than I would have liked, to finish the first edition of Archangel. Between school, jobs, and just being a young adult, I procrastinated a lot. Since starting this blog, however, I write every day, especially now that I am between jobs, and I can see marked improvement and desire to write. Even if a big part of that writing is blogs, which I thought I wouldn’t like as much, I enjoy each and every word that I type.
Networking. Networking is the buzz word for those looking to establish a career. It is tried and true, with so many of us able to get an interview or a job because of who we know. But they don’t mention how enjoyable networking is. Being able to meet and interact with people who have walked this path, or are currently walking it, is enlightening and educational. It helps me figure out what I need to do and what I can do better. Most importantly, it gives me the opportunity to reciprocate the relationship, helping others out when I can. Meeting like-minded people in the same industry is invaluable on both a professional and personal level.
Using a Schedule. I have preached this one a lot, but it is a well-known fact that I used to be abysmal at keeping to a schedule and planning ahead. I was the world champion of procrastinating and doing things at the very last minute. Because of this journey I have been forced to change that. Being a Google fan, I use the Google Calendar to plan out each week and book dates in the future. It is extremely useful to have the bookings pushed to my phone to remind me what I want to be doing, and actually following through on that is rewarding in itself.
Constantly Learning. From various different sources, this process has been an incredible journey where I have never stopped learning. Whether it be about social media management, blog writing, researching, fiction writing, interviews, reviews, the road to indie authorship, or any number of topics, I have learned so much in the last six months. Compared to who I was at the beginning of August, I am much more confident in my own abilities and possess skills that I never thought I would have!
Goals. Setting goals and milestones has been a major part of this journey. I might set a goal to write a certain number of words each day, write a few blogs in one day, reach a certain number of followers by the end of the month. At any given time I have multiple long- and short-term goals on the go. Hitting those goals is a reward in itself, but they also help drive productivity and serve to keep me on track. I have my list written down so I can see them constantly, and it is the best feeling when you can cross one of those off.
So there you have it, the big five reasons why I keep doing what I’m doing. Some of them may seem a little lame (who is excited about using a schedule?), but they are the parts of this journey that have been the best so far. There are other pieces to the puzzle as well, but these five are the most important.
Tell me about a journey that you’ve been on, or are currently on, and what keeps you moving forward! Is your list the same as mine, or is there something else that keeps you doing what you love to do?
I know six months is not a major milestone for a lot of endeavours, but it certainly feels like one to me. For the sake of not getting too cheesy, here is to another six months! And we can properly celebrate when we hit that one year mark.