Josh

Thoughts on Work and Life

Category: Writing (page 1 of 5)

Resisting the Temptation to Write for Google

As someone familiar with SEO and online marketing it’s tempting to write for search engines instead of for people.

I know how to do that. I’m not the best but my copywriting website is still on Page One for “direct response copywriter.” An industry with thousands of competitors.

So when I started this personal blog, jmonen.com, I was of course tempted to do the same thing here.

I knew if I just produced enough posts around a certain niche and started getting links that I would start to rank well. And who doesn’t want their blog to be popular?

I hate knowing how little traffic I have right now. And so this felt like a way to crawl out of my hole of obscurity.

But I resisted.

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How Honest Should You Be on A Personal Blog?

Me new desk setup!

I think one of the hardest parts of maintaining a personal blog is honest writing.

I can only speak for myself but I constantly struggle with just how honest I should be. I’m not talking about lying. I’m talking about how much of myself and my real life I actually reveal.

Some call it transparency. But that’s a weird word. It makes me think of things that are see-through, like clear plastic.

For example, I decided to start this daily blog because I wanted to document my journey of going from Egypt (self-employed copywriter) to the Promised Land (owning a business).

I thought it would be interesting to keep a daily blog for 10 years to see how things unfold.

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Remembering Why I Started This Blog: To Document My Journey

I have a bad habit that drives me crazy sometimes.

It’s one of those things that, even though I know I’m doing it, I feel like I can’t stop myself.

The habit is overthinking things.

Take this blog for example… I started it because I wanted to document my journey as I leave “Egypt” (a broke self-employed guy) and enter the “Promised Land” (owning a business that generates profit without my presence).

I got really excited about this after reading Austin Kleon’s book, Show Your Work (my notes here). Austin wrote:

“Become a documentarian of what you do. Start a work journal: Write your thoughts down in a notebook, or speak them into an audio recorder. Keep a scrapbook. Take a lot of photographs of your work at different stages in your process. Shoot video of you working. This isn’t about making art, it’s about simply keeping track of what’s going on around you.”

When I read that I was like, “Boom, that’s it! That’s what I want to do!” Continue reading

8 Reasons for a Personal Blog by Darren Rowse

I’ve been feeling disillusioned lately about having a “personal blog.”

Maybe that’s what I get for publishing a blog for 185 days in a row without having a clear vision about “why” I’m doing this.

Some days I feel like this is such a waste of time. I mean, why write on a blog that only a few people read when I could be getting paid to write blogs for other people?

When I start to think like that I can get in a bad mood pretty fast. So when I read this post by Darren Rowse titled, 8 Reasons Why I Highly Recommend Having a Personal Blog, it encouraged me.

You can read the full post here. But here are his 8 reasons:

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Changing Where I Publish Daily Blog Posts

OK. I’m officially done writing a daily blog without having a clear plan!

180 days ago I committed to publishing a post every day for 10 years. And I fully intend to do that.

But lately I’ve been feeling frustrated with my current process, which basically consists of me writing a random post about something I think is interesting or useful.

Some days it’s about work, other days it’s about addiction and then there’s the random “spiritual” post in there for good measure… it’s all over the place!

And I hate it. I hate doing things that don’t serve a clear purpose.

Plus, I have 4 other blogs that desperately need some content! Blogs where I sell products or services.

And yet, here I am writing every single day on the ONE blog that does not serve any business purpose.

My “personal blog.” It feels stupid. So time to stop being stupid and to approach this “publish daily” habit a little smarter.

This doesn’t mean I’m abandoning jmonen.com. It just means I’m giving myself permission to post on any of the 5 blogs I own instead of only posting on here every day. Those others blogs are:

So I sat down at Starbucks today and created a new master editorial calendar to manage all these blogs. By the way, if you think I’m crazy for having so many blogs I want to explain something… I am crazy. So I guess no further explanation is needed! Ha!

I’ll still update this blog but not daily.

I want jmonen.com to be more of true personal blog where I can just update you with what’s going on in my life and different businesses. And who knows, maybe one day I’ll choose a specific focus for this blog (originally it was going to be about the lessons I learn as I build these businesses… and maybe I’ll stick to that).

But for now, just know I’m still publishing daily but just in different places. 🙂

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