So today is a BIG day for me personally. 1 year ago today, I wrote my first blog post (Children’s Consignment Sales:Selling in 10 Easy Steps). Happy 1st Birthday, Thrifty Little Mom! To be honest, the idea of writing a blog sort of struck me one night last summer as I was trying to fall asleep. I began with a free Blogger account and just started writing about stuff I knew about. Once I met a few goals, read some eBooks and stuck with it for longer than a few months, I decided to get pretty serious. The first step in getting serious was to change the name. Thrifty Little Mom started as Little Mommy Secrets under my old blogger account. I couldn’t figure out why I felt a little weird talking about the name of the blog (Little Mommy Secrets) until I realized that it sounded a little like an “adult” or lingerie store. Which wasn’t what my blog was about….AT ALL. Today I find great joy in sitting down to write this post because I’ve learned so much and grown so much as a person through my Thrifty Little Mom writing outlet and the people who read it. I wanted to honor that growth by writing about 5 life lessons I’ve learned from blogging.
1. Becoming a Mom Doesn’t Stop Your Dreams
- When I became a mom life sort of slapped me in the face. The reality was that these little people require a ridiculous amount of time & care. Between pediatrician visits, feeding issues and late night parent article reading I felt like the worst parent on the planet.
- I wouldn’t say that I was depressed, but I had a strong sense that I was slowly loosing myself.
- I had chosen to be a stay at home spouse about 1.5 years before my son was born. Once he arrived I began to fear that 20 years would pass and I would wake up suddenly without purpose. That I would spend 20 years caring for my kids and find that I no longer knew who I was and what I want to do with my life.
- Blogging has shown me that through time management and accepting a little help, you can keep living your dreams as you raise your children and no one has to suffer in the process.
- I wake up 2 hours before everyone else gets up to do what I love. I am motivated to get out of bed that early because I’m working on what I really enjoy.
- I’ve worked out a balanced routine that I can manage that keeps me, my child and my husband happy. I actually stick to my routine about 75% of the time. That way you know that I fail sometimes and I’m not a robot.
2. I Can Finish What I Start
- I’m a serious project dumper. When I get bored or uninterested I usually dump stuff. That’s why I have 15 unfinished craft projects in my craft closet right now.
- I enjoy the “idea” of completing things but have trouble following through.
- I get super thrilled about starting stuff and then move on after a few attempts.
- When I started the blog I told my husband that I was going to establish various commitments before I made bigger steps. That started with me writing 50 quality posts. Once I had written 50, I could move from a free Blogger site to a hosted WordPress site.
- Here I am a year later and I’ve written over 150 posts about topics I love. I’ve even got some close friends contributing.
- My commitment to writing, learning and communicating has paid off and I feel good that I have enough momentum going to prevent me from giving up. For once in my life I’m proud of myself for continuing what I started.
3. A Balanced Mind and Attitude Keep Life Together
- I haven’t always been balanced about my blog.
- In the beginning I didn’t always balance my writing and time management.
- There were days I was stressed because it didn’t seem like there were enough hours in the day to get all I wanted done.
- Then I re-read Start: Punch Fear in the Face, Escape Average and Do Work that Matters by Jon Acuff and came to conclusion that my road to awesome needed to start 2 hours before everyone else got up. It was just enough “me” time to allow me to pursue what I love.
- When I’m pursuing something I can tell when things are getting out of balance. The signs are: My house is getting messy and out of order, my child is getting clingy or my husband and I are having more raised voice “discussions”.
- When things are in balance I feel good, my environment feels refreshing and my relationships with my family are peaceful.
- The key to balance for me is planning. Lists, schedules, written goals and life road maps keeping me moving forward rather than stagnate.
4. Be Willing to Learn From Others
- I love writing but that doesn’t mean I’m Jane Austin.
- I have so much room for learning and I live in time in history where information is readily available without ever leaving my house!
- If I really want to grow I have to decide to have confidence in my abilities but know that there are people out there that can teach me a thing or 20.
- As long as I’m willing to listen, learn and grow I will see my dreams and aspirations become a reality.
5. Sometimes You Just Have to Unplug
- In the past few weeks I’ve been in several situations where I literally had to just unplug.
- One circumstance involved me thinking that the place I was traveling to had internet and when I arrived, it did not. So much for getting ahead.
- The other circumstance involved me going away to kids camp where I chose to invest my whole time and energy with the 5th & 6th grade girls I was leading without the need to check email, blog comments or social media. I put my phone away and checked in to the commitment I had made and was repaid in genuine relationships.
- To my surprise, the world went on and nothing blew up while I unplugged. In fact it was one of the best weeks of traffic for my blog and I didn’t do a thing!
- I don’t want to be an “all work and no play” adult. When you live your life like that you wake up 20 years later wishing you could go back and re-live the days when your kids still wanted to snuggle.
- To this day, if my son comes up to snuggle in my lap while I’m using my smart phone, I make a conscious choice to put the apps down and pick my child up. I don’t want regrets.
Thank you so much for reading my blog, commenting and being a part of this journey with me. Without you, this blog wouldn’t be much. It would be just me writing about stuff and putting it out there. I’m looking forward to another year of helpful content, growth, learning and sharing with you!
Kim Anderson is the organized chaos loving author behind the Thrifty Little Mom Blog. She helps other people who thrive in organized chaos to stress less, remember more and feel in control of their time, money, and home. Kim is the author of: Live, Save, Spend, Repeat: The Life You Want with the Money You Have. She’s been featured on Time.com, Money.com, Good Housekeeping, Women’s Day, and more!