Image for blog stating enoughMany of us have read we can have some kind of success with blogging.

Maybe it will be a book deal.

Maybe it’s the fact money can be made with a blog.

For some, just being able to share their knowledge is enough

For others, success is measured differently.

Some won’t quit until they see their name “in lights”, whereas others wait until their blog propels them into a business and/or leads to financial freedom.

But, what happens when what we read can happen, isn’t happening?

How long do we wait?

Today’s Lesson

Before I started blogging, I analyzed what the “big boys/girls” were doing and how long it took them and their blogs to begin to make a (big) difference.

Two years seemed to be the “magic” number.

In fact, when I interviewed Darren Rowse of Problogger, he verified that by saying,

It’s all about looking for signs of growth and engagement – not just traffic. You should start to see these (even if they are just very small signs) from the first few months.

For a blog to reach its potential though, you need to give it considerable time. It takes a couple of years to get to its potential.

Depending on how we look at it, two years can seem like a long time. That’s 730 days, 17,520 hours, over a million minutes…..

Is it worth the wait?

Or is it time to say, “Enough!”

What say you?

Today’s Assignment

How long have you been blogging?

Thus far, are you happy with where your blog has taken you?

What would make you quit?

If quitting isn’t in your thoughts, what keeps you going?

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  1. Oh, I was expecting to see the tens of comments that usually await me, and it turns out, I’m first.

    I’m blogging about 2 years now, though my alive blog are younger than that, specially my English one, which I transfered to a new location.

    Well, as for the subject matter. My first idea with blogging was as a “reserve choice” in case the crisis hit me hard. Where I live unemployment is approaching 20% so I couldn’t be too safe. I have been spared from that, and be able to secure a job, not without effort, and now blogging has became mostly a hobby. I’m a writer, you know, and I love to write.

    On the other hand, my Spanish blog is doing so much better and it’s getting old enough to start taking it seriously.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      WooHoo Miguel,

      You get to be first. :)

      That was smart of you to plan ahead and set up blogs in case you became unemployed. And with you being a writer, your blogs are a great place to showcase your work. Just think, now you have two online resumes, one in English and one in Spanish.

  2. Jay SchryerNo Gravatar says:

    Two years seems like an infinitely long time in “Internet years”, but in reality, it’s not that long at all. I think that our culture of instant gratification does us a great disservice by tempting us into believing that we should have it all NOW. We think blogging should be like microwaving dinner, when in fact it’s more like cooking chili. Slow, steady heat for hours, letting all the ingredients blend together slowly. Yum.

    Now I want chili for breakfast :)
    .-= Check out Jay Schryer´s awesome post: Thou Shalt Not Sell Out =-.

    • The good part about that chili, Jay, it’s that by cooking slowly, there’s always time to adapt, learn and grow.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Jay,

      Haha! That’s too funny as we had chile for dinner.

      You’re right. Our culture does teach instant gratification. And with a blog, it just doesn’t work well that way. Not only do we grow as our blogs grow, but our online friendships develop over time. Just like a good pot of chile. :)

  3. I’ve been blogging for two years and one month at http://DelightfulWork.com but only for one month at Big Link Rally. Wow it does seem longer than that.
    Quit? Why would I ever quit? I guess if I closed both my transformational events business and my coaching business the blogs would close as well.

    It really comes back to our purpose for blogging. If you’re in business and want to attract clients online, a blog is an essential part of an online presence. I don’t see it as waiting at all. But rather tweaking and adjusting to produce the results that you want.
    .-= Check out Tom Volkar / Big Link Rally´s awesome post: First Be Authentic In Three Key Ways =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Tom,

      That’s true. When we have businesses or want to develop an online presence, a blog is one of the best ways of doing it. Like you, it’s where you launched your Big Link Rally from, plus your clients can get a glimpse into who you are.

      I can’t see you quitting any of your endeavors. You’re too passionate about them.

  4. I’m at a bit over a year for my main blog now. Yes, I see signs of growth – increased numbers of subscribers. I also see signs of stagnation – pretty constant search engine traffic for instance. But then, I pretty consciously decided not to go for keywords on this blog, other than making sure my title has whatever keywords my blogpost is about.

    What would make me quit? I’m not sure. What keeps me going? Just my decision to keep on blogging weekly for the foreseeable future. As long as I really do have something to write about every week, why quit? And as long as people find what I write interesting enough to subscribe and comment, I have reason enough to continue. I guess I just like to write.
    .-= Check out Katinka – All Considering´s awesome post: Organized religion versus science and atheism =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Katinka,

      That’s great you’re seeing those signs of growth in your subscriber counts. It’s those people who are undoubtedly enjoying what you share, so like you said, as long as you have something to write about, why not?

      And, when we like to write, what a better place then a blog?

  5. Hi Barbara – I’m not surprised by the two-year increment used in the prediction. That’s long been prevailing wisdom’s benchmark for real world businesses. If you’re starting from scratch the first year’s business cycle is something you need to experience, and your second year is spent re-strategizing and devising a modified plan for continuance, if warranted.

    Now that we’re into our second year, we’ve changed our expectations, spread our wings a little bit, and are exploring new strategies. We’re familiar enough with the mechanics now to begin setting goals for different results. Great topic, thanks.
    .-= Check out Betsy Wuebker´s awesome post: LOCAVORES, MORE AND MORE =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      You’re welcome Betsy,

      Well put. A blog is very much like a business in real life. The first year we take baby steps and then after time passes we feel comfortable spreading our wings a little and trying new endeavors.

      From the sound of it, you and Pete are having a lot of success with your new strategies.

  6. I’ve been blogging for less than a year and I really enjoy doing it so I plan to keep doing it for as long as people keep reading (or maybe longer!). While of course I’d love to make tons of money doing it or get a fabulous book deal, I’m mostly blogging because I love it and therefore it doesn’t feel like I’m waiting for anything.
    .-= Check out Positively Present´s awesome post: how to let go of what you don’t need =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Dani,

      Isn’t that great how that works? When we love what we do, the time flies by and instead of feeling we’re waiting for something, we instead look forward to the next day.

  7. I have been blogging nearly a year and I am happy what I get in return. I earn respect. People listen me, that’s the important thing to me. May be if I quit from life, I will quit from blogging. The thing force me to blog is the joy of sharing.
    .-= Check out Arafat Hossain Piyada´s awesome post: 7 Essential Windows 7 Tweaking Tool for Tweaker =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Arafat,

      You’re right. When we blog we gain respect from our readers. When we make their lives easier or share a tip, it not only helps them, but we feel good, too. It’s a win-win.

  8. Two years sounds about right! Working on other projects at the same time to enhance your overall income while you’re building your authority and popularity is definitely a smart thing to do.
    .-= Check out Barbara Ling, Virtual Coach´s awesome post: Make Money Online Tip – Build a Facebook Fan Page! =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Barbara,

      That’s a great reminder. As we build our blogs, we can also be engaged in other projects. Some may compliment our blogs, whereas others may bring in additional income and/or increase our popularity.

  9. Debbie YostNo Gravatar says:

    You already know my answer. I said “Enough” about a month ago. I miss it sometimes and still find myself writing blog posts in my head, but yesterday I actually got to do some sewing. I actually had life caught up enough where I had a little free time and didn’t spend it on the computer writing another post for a few to read. I blogged for close to 2 years and it wasn’t “happening” for me. I wanted my name in lights, but I also worried about the “be careful what you wish for” of getting that. Look at John & Kate. I’m happy and have no regrets.
    .-= Check out Debbie Yost´s awesome post: Tried and True =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Debbie,

      Yes. And I was sad to see you quit, but I totally understand why. You’re a gal with a very busy life. It’s good to hear you got to do some sewing as I know you enjoy that, too.

      That’s a good point about being careful what we wish for. Jon and Kate are a great example of that.

  10. Mike GoadNo Gravatar says:

    How long have you been blogging? About 4 of 5 years, in one blog or another.

    Thus far, are you happy with where your blog has taken you? I’m still doing more than one blog, so, yes.

    What would make you quit? Finding something totally different to be obsessed — but then I’d probably blog about it.

    If quitting isn’t in your thoughts, what keeps you going? It’s part of what I do, though it does become hard to do when we travel away from easy access or when I’m working long hours on a contract job.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Mike,

      Wow. You’re like a problogger with all those years behind you.

      I like your answer how if you found something else to obsesses about, you’d probably blog about it. Spoken like a die-hard blogger. :)

  11. PatriciaNo Gravatar says:

    I am learning to write and e-book and my blog is in recovery from my trip still – I just keep going step by step and work to keep a balance. Healing my physical self right now is my – BIG THING…..very big … and part of that is learning how to earn money, over again, by learning how to earn money doing things I want to do….blogging is part of connecting for me and enjoying every day – every day.
    .-= Check out Patricia´s awesome post: Brian Williams – I could use a little help here =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Patricia,

      Isn’t it all fun? There’s so much to learn we’ll never tire of it. And look at you, writing an ebook, too. That’s something I hope to do one day, also.

      Taking care of YOU is the most important thing. Blogs will wait, as will your readers. In the meantime, enjoy the journey.

  12. PatriciaNo Gravatar says:

    I forgot to say that I have read this post 3 times in your archives – I have it bookmarked! (I did figure out how to do that !)
    .-= Check out Patricia´s awesome post: Brian Williams – I could use a little help here =-.

  13. Hi Barbara – I’ve read that it takes two to three years. But then I wonder, two to three years to what? Fame? Fortune? Income? Visibility? That seems a little hazy. I’ve only been blogging ten months, and for the first nine months I just put my head down and wrote. Then I decided to start poking around, venturing out into the blogosphere. And my traffic in the last month increased about 10 fold because of that. But I also realized there’s an art to balancing your virtual life with your real life. So I’m working on that part of it right now. Since I write about meaning, I always have to ask myself how meaningful is blogging for me. As long as it continues to be so, I will continue to write, although I don’t have an end goal in mind, other than providing insight, perhaps inspiration, and a place for dialogue to ensue.
    .-= Check out Patty – Why Not Start Now?´s awesome post: Creative Inspiration From Stephen Sondheim =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Patty,

      You’re right. The time frame Darren talks about is hazy. Like you said, 2-3 years and then what? Plus, is it 2-3 years of blogging “x” numbers a day, or…

      That’s very true. It becomes a balancing act between our blogs and real life. Unfortunately blogging can win that battle due to it’s addictiveness. Taking it one day at a time and enjoying the process is what has worked best for me.

  14. I keep blogging because I turned it into my profession. Otherwise, I suspect I would have stopped after about a year! I’ve been blogging for almost two years now – started in March 2008.
    .-= Check out vered | blogger for hire´s awesome post: Ten Stupid Fashion Trends =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Vered,

      Isn’t that great how that worked out? You started a blog and within a short period of time, blogging has become your profession. Who knew?

  15. Silly GirlNo Gravatar says:

    How long have you been blogging?
    I have been blogging since February of this year. Blogging helped me alot when I was out of work because it helped me connect with others. Plus, talking to others with EDs [eating disorders] has really helped me. I am happy where my blog has taken me..

    I can’t think of anything that would make me quit. I will continue to write because I love to write. It is a part of who I am so I am not ready to quit.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Silly Girl,

      I know you enjoy writing, and when I have a chance, I enjoy catching up on your blog and your progress. I’m sure you’re helping many with your honesty about eating disorders. And lucky you, you get to write for your job, too.

  16. Wilma HamNo Gravatar says:

    Hi everybody.
    I have been blogging for over 2 years now and at first it was for a very specific audience of people who had done our program and to keep them engaged with the material and to support them from the knowing to the doing. Now I am venturing out to capture a wider audience and I am learning about all the stuff a blogger needs to learn.
    As with all learning, understanding and then practicing blogging takes time and so far I am pleased about the progress we are making.
    As with everything in life, I woud stop when it starts to dominate my life and makes me feel emprisoned and is not adding any value to us or others.
    I keep going because it is part of our business venture and exciting.
    .-= Check out Wilma Ham´s awesome post: Part 2. Making requests, an underestimated skill. =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Wilma,

      You’re got lots of time under your belt, too. And you’re right, with blogging there is lots we need to know. But that’s what makes it exciting as we don’t get bored.

      I hear you when you say you would quit if you felt imprisoned. In that instance, the fun would be gone. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen as your blog is providing tons of value.

  17. Evelyn LimNo Gravatar says:

    I have been away from blogging for a couple of weeks. During the break, I contemplated not coming back as I was presented with other work offers. But I decided to listen to my heart, instead of my thoughts. Also, I decided to go with a new domain altogether even though my old site was already more than two years ago. I really questioned how attached I was to my old blog. The attachment put me in great pain, I realized. In the end, I decided that it was best to have a site that would resonate the energy that I hope to communicate. So here I am, back to blogging with a new domain site.
    .-= Check out Evelyn Lim´s awesome post: Abundance Tapestry is Live =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Evelyn,

      Welcome back. How smart of you to know when it was time to let go of the old blog and start anew. Not only are you starting fresh, but you’ll be taking your readers on a new journey, as well.

      P.S. I just checked out your new blog. I love the name and how you’ve laid out the site. “Abundance Tapestry”…it’s a beauty.

  18. CarlaNo Gravatar says:

    I’ve been blogging for about a year and a half now and I dont see myself quitting anytime soon. My Green and Chic blog is an extension of my web store and if it wasn’t for that, I probably would have quit a long time ago. My blog has grown but it hasn’t exploded like so many others have. I’m lucky to get 1-2 comments for each post, but that’s not why I do it.

    I guess the Green and Chic store is one thing that’s keeping me blogging. Also the fact that I don’t want to be a “quitter” is a part of it. And what will I do with all of my readers in my RSS? Just drop them?
    .-= Check out Carla´s awesome post: Moxsie.com – New eco-friendly shop that gives back =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Carla,

      You’ve touched on something I think might happen to a lot of bloggers. For one, some of us don’t want to be labeled as quitters, and secondly, what would we do with all of our readers?

      What Debbie did (see earlier comment) is a good idea. She left her “good bye” post up and that way her readers can decide for themselves. I don’t know if you read her comment, but even though it was a tough call, she knew when it was “time” and is happy with her decision.

  19. DavinaNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara. I’ve been blogging since June 2008. What would make me quit? If I woke up one day and decided I just didn’t want to do it anymore. Time has become more of an issue lately, as I don’t have the time I used to have when I first started blogging.

    What keeps me going is connecting with others and just having fun… and of course, the writing. I’ve relaxed with blogging more this year; let my hair down if you will, and have been re-examining who I am as a blogger. Still evolving… and being patient…
    .-= Check out Davina´s awesome post: Changing Seasons in Gentle Stride =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Davina,

      That’s true. The connections we make in blogosphere is often what drives us to continue on.

      You mentioned being more relaxed this year. I think that is a natural progression. The longer we blog, the less we worry about how we might be perceived. Eventually we figure out, our readers just want the real us.

  20. jan geronimoNo Gravatar says:

    How long have you been blogging? – Going on 11 months this November.

    Thus far, are you happy with where your blog has taken you? – Yeah, it has taught me discipline and to never be comfortable with what you know because there are so many things to learn in blogging. I have barely scratched the surface of things I should learn to master or just simply to be good at. And I’m happy friends do not only inquire, do you have a new post? They also ask about me personally. Very fulfilling. Material rewards and fame are but small parts of what makes blogging great.

    What would make you quit? – Debilitating disease maybe.

    If quitting isn’t in your thoughts, what keeps you going? – Blogging is a form of personal validation, a vehicle for learning, and great launchpad for personal growth. Great if you make money from it, even greater if you become famous. But not all of us are hardwired for that kind of success. And even so, there’s something to be said for keeping the faith and being a man or woman of substance in one’s humble community of readers and friends.
    .-= Check out jan geronimo´s awesome post: When Quitting is the Only Sane Option Left =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Jan,

      So eloquently put.

      I totally agree. It doesn’t seem to matter how long we’ve blogged, there’s always more to learn. It sure keeps us humble, doesn’t it?

      I like how you put that, “…there’s something to be said for keeping the faith and being a man or woman of substance in one’s humble community of readers and friends.” Very true.

  21. DanielNo Gravatar says:

    28th Aug 2009 is the 1st post archived in my blog.

    But … I’ve been around since late 2007. :)

    My gosh. That’s almost 17,520 hours!
    .-= Check out Daniel´s awesome post: The Simplicity Artist Survey 2009 =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Daniel,

      I read your first sentence and thought, “No, I’ve seen Daniel around much longer than that”, and then I red the rest of your comment.

      I clicked over to your new site. It fits your blog title perfectly; simple and elegant. Great job!

  22. RhysNo Gravatar says:

    Even 2 years isn’t a guarentee of success! I have only been blogging for 7 years, and only now beginning to earn a decent income.
    .-= Check out Rhys´s awesome post: Weekend Away In London – NFL International Series, Wembley 2009 =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Rhys,

      That’s true. Two years in not a guarantee. Congratulations for hanging in there. It sounds like your patience is paying off.

  23. GraemeNo Gravatar says:

    I’ve been on the net 22 months, The wife says I have 24 months to make it pay, its taken me 18 months to wade pass all the BS. My blog sites are only baby’s just starting to grow. So I better tell her I need another 24 months because you said so. LOL Thanks
    .-= Check out Graeme´s awesome post: Avoid The FTC’s Fine =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      You’re welcome, Graeme,

      You’re funny. You know Darren’s wife (Problogger) gave him a period of time to either make it work or give it up, too. All you have to do is follow in his footsteps and everyone will be happy. :)

  24. Hey Barbara,

    The way I see this waiting is this that you can achieve worthy until you have waited for it. I can say this because I have experienced it.

    Many newbies fail at starting a new blog just because they desire quick results. And nothing like instant success exists inn online and the real world.
    .-= Check out Ravi@How to make quick money´s awesome post: Never Give Up Even When Goals Fail? =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Ravi,

      That’s so true. Most people know there’s no way to get rich quick in real life, but for some reason they think they can do it online (where it might be even more difficult).

      Good point.

  25. PeacefulWmn9No Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara. One of the biggest advantages for me is that I would blog no matter what, just for the love of writing. I’ve been doing it for years, close to 10. It’s only been within the past 10 months or so that I’ve gone more “public” with it or contemplated in making money with it.

    For me, if that happens, great. If not, I’ll still blog.

    One thing I’ve noticed and don’t particularly embrace is, that the more focus I put on things like SEO and monetization, the less quality or joy my writing seems to hold. Interesting.

    So…I’ve quit trying so hard on the business end (I still have my freelancing, no matter) and gone back to the love end of it.

    Karen
    .-= Check out PeacefulWmn9´s awesome post: Admiration For The Elderly =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Karen,

      I hear you. Blogging can bring us so much joy it would be hard to give up.

      And the SEO/keyword stuff (which brings in search engine traffic and maybe ad clicks) is good to know, but like you said, it can hamper our writing style. It’s a fine line we walk if we want it all, but if we have something else to fall back on (like you and your freelance work), sometimes it’s best to let it go and just let the words flow. I think eventually the traffic will show up.

  26. George AngusNo Gravatar says:

    Barbara,

    When you think about it, 2 years is not really that long. If we say that it takes two years for the blog to reach it’s potential, we can view that as a form of mastery. Hoe many professions can you think of where someone can go from rank novice to mastery in two years? I don’t think there are that many.

    Hopefully, this will encourage folks to stick with it through the good times and the bad.

    George

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi George,

      That’s so true. Two years isn’t all that long. And like you said, if we can master blogging in that short a time, it’s well worth all those hills and valleys we experience.

  27. suzenNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara!
    I’ve been blogging for 10 months – it’s been almost surreal. I LOVE the connecting part! I wrote for a newspaper and free-lanced for decades. It was writing in the dark! You never knew if you touched anyone, motivated anyone, nothing! There was no feedback – ever – well, except for the editors and that was not usually positive. You waited months to see your stuff published. I often forgot what I wrote! Yeah, it was darkness alright.

    Now THIS? It’s the sunshine in my life! YAY! I’ve learned so much and yet the more I know the more I don’t know. I’m still technologically behind but I don’t let that stop me. There is a sense of validation I get from blogging – you can’t believe how totally delighted I am to have so many subscribers. It shocks AND delights me! It’s given me the discipline I need to keep the creative juices flowing and I cannot imagine EVER quitting. Where it leads me, it leads me. I am not attached to any outcome here.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Suzen,

      What a difference blogging has made in your life. Isn’t it great how we can write something and within a short period of time, others are responding and telling us how what we wrote affected them, or maybe we made them think a little deeper. Where else can we get that? I’m guessing no place except by blogging.

      And just think of our audience. People from all over the world get to read our work and through our blogs we make cyber friends who come and, and, and… I could go on and on, but you know what I mean. Blogging is truly an awesome hobby.

  28. Barbara — Once again you’ve given me quite the challenge. Okay, here goes:

    I’ve had my blog since February of 2007. Actually, to be precise my first post was February 13, 2007. It took much longer before I began to get regular comments — you know, the ones that weren’t from family and friends:~) I suppose it’s a good thing that persistence is one of strengths.

    I am happy with my blog, but I’m also changing things as I learn more about blogging. I hope blogging will continue to help me grow — I see it as a work in progress.

    What would make me quit? I suppose if blogging became a chore, rather than a love. To be honest, I think that’s one reason I don’t push for my numbers to be higher. I want blogging to be something I love to do and not something I have to do.

    What keeps me going? This is the easiest question — the writing and the other bloggers I meet on the blogoshere:~)
    .-= Check out Sara B. Healy´s awesome post: My Halloween Scare =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Sara,

      I think you’ve landed on the secret to long term blogging success – not pushing the numbers to be higher (but letting them grow on their own) and looking at blogging as something you WANT to do and not HAVE to do.

      And, I totally agree, the other bloggers we meet certainly help us keep going.

  29. Barbara,
    Great question. It took me 9 & 1/2 years to get my bachelors degree when I was raising my children. When I wanted to quit I’d ask myself, “Where will I be and what will I be doing in 10 if I don’t keep going? Because I never had a great answer I kept going.

    I love Jays comment and just Tweeted it! Isn’t that the truth and at 55 I fall into the same trap once in a while! LOL

    So I continue with the question if I quit blogging today where will I be 10 years from now. I’d be clueless about this entire side of technology and I’d be missing out on many opportunities of meeting people and sharing my wisdom.

    Everything in life can’t be measured with money, sales and how popular one is. If I help change 1,2 or 20 lives over the years has my time been worthwhile. Hell yes!

    We often lose sight of what life really means when our egos continually keep track of our ratings, guru’s and books like “The 4 hour work week.”

    Forget ratings, income etc. Will anyone I’ve helped with my blog please stand up? Thank you! I’ll keep blogging another couple of years and reevaluate!

    Thanks for helping me sort out and remember what is meaningful and what is important. If I died tomorrow would anyone care that I never had a best selling ebook? I don’t think so!

    If I died tomorrow would anyone care that I made a difference in their life? I know so! Hugs to you!
    .-= Check out Tess The Bold Life´s awesome post: For All My Friends Near and Far =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hugs to you, too Tess,

      You worded that so beautifully. And it’s true. No one will care if we wrote an ebook or had a kazillion subscribers. What they will remember is how we may have helped them, made their life a little easier, or opened their eyes to the bigger picture.

      Your words are a great reminder to all bloggers to stay true to themselves.

      Thank you Tess.

  30. EvitaNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara,

    I have heard this idea from Leo Babuta of Zen Habits as well – I think he roughly gave a 2 year window. Well I will be approaching that 2 year window with one of my blogs this January and do I feel like it is a big success – that all depends on how we measure success 😉

    So my take on this is similar to Tom Volkar’s – it really goes back to what the original purpose of the blog is – if we are doing it to make quick money, most of those people fall out within the first year I would presume. If we are doing it for the love of doing it, then time makes no difference.
    .-= Check out Evita´s awesome post: Push Through =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Evita,

      Isn’t that the truth? How does each of us measure success?

      Ditto to Tom’s comment. And like you said, those who are only in it for the money might quickly give up, but when it’s in our blood, time seems to stand still.

  31. Barbara, I’m sooo late here this time….:)
    But i love the topic of this post. So close to my heart. I have often thought about why i actually started the blog. I have started blogging only 4 months and i already feel like its part of my life. I have no idea how i lived without it for so long :) I love meeting new people…sharing caring…its so so much fun..and so good for my own growth. So much learning. I feel blessed for the miracle of blogging and the people i have met and am going to meet along the way.
    My reason to start the blog is “to help others”, now if that brings me money in the future or not..i dont know. Maybe..maybe not. If it does bring me money or a deal etc…good..if it doesnt then also good. My motive is to help people and make a positive impact on their life. That is more important than any amount of money for me.
    I dont think i will stop blogging ever…..Maybe when i become really old and my grand children tell me…granny you cant sit anymore..let alone type 😉 Maybe then :)
    .-= Check out Zeenat{Positive Provocations}´s awesome post: Our Life’s Shelter =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Zeenat,

      You’re never late here. The door is always open. :)

      Isn’t it amazing how blogging can enhance our lives? Who knew? Look at you, for example, you’re still a young blogger but already you’ve touched many lives just with your presence in blogosphere. Where else can we do that?

      And yes, blogging may lead some of us into professions or situations where we can make money, but when that’s not our first motive, just the joy of sharing keeps us moving forward.

      I don’t see you quitting even when your grandchildren say you’re too old to sit and type. If and when that happens, just kick back and tell them to type up your blog posts as talk. :)

  32. Hi Barbara,

    Patience is a virtue and a virtue that I have had issues with for most of my life. That said, what is 730 days compared to years of being clueless about what is our passion or what we love.

    I think it all is a matter of perspective. If you love what you are doing, the time becomes bearable and enjoyable. It truly boils down to intention and passion. If someone is doing something with a hope of a fast buck or desire for lots of money, then the two years is a long time.

    So my belief is to just go with what you love and before you know it, the time has flown by without struggle.
    .-= Check out Nadia – Happy Lotus´s awesome post: Chillin’ with the Saltwater Buddha: Being Spiritual in a Material World =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Nadia,

      That’s superb advice, “just go with what you love and before you know it, the time has flown by without struggle.”

      Your advice is also good for those who are blogging for the wrong reason. If they’re not loving it, it might be time to find something else that makes lights their passion.

  33. janiceNo Gravatar says:

    Great post, Barbara, and as always, you’ve generated a lot of postworthy comments.

    I had a private blog for a while, and wrote a regular column for a newsletter that’s since adopted a blog format, but I’ve only had my current blog for seven months. In the last few months, I’ve done a lot of teetering on the brink of giving up blogging for a variety of reasons, including disappointment with some bloggers whose egos have taken over and with others who are exploitative and hypocritical. Plus, it’s really time consuming to commit enough to blogging to do it well, and I often feel like I’m missing my home and family and undermining my health.

    Luckily, my reasons for continuing have outweighed those. If I make it to two years at this rate, it’ll be because I’ve found my way, my balance and my blogging rhythm, and have created income streams that allow me to keep my integrity.

    I didn’t create my blog as a hobby, but as a place to house my old articles, eventually sell more ebooks and provide an online ‘café’ for people to drop into. I’ve strayed from that recently, but I’ve never given up on the goal and hope to get back to normal soon as soon as I’m feeling better.

    I chose my blog name, Sharing the Journey, very carefully. Life’s a journey, and so’s blogging; there’s no destination. Not only did I want to share my coaching and writing journeys, but I also wanted a place where I could share moments that moved or inspired me on my life journey, and where other folk could share theirs, too. Sometimes we can choose our companions and routes, but often, there are detours, ups and downs, unexpected bouts of bad weather and we can’t choose who we meet along the way. Often the unexpected turns out to feel like it was meant. I’ve made a lot of friends online and learned a lot through necessity.

    Blogging’s also dragged me kicking and screaming into the 21st century when it comes to technology and I’ve enjoyed the learning.

    I also love the empowering feeling blogging gives you, the chance to be publisher, site owner, columnist and site designer. Everyone needs a place where their voice can be heard, or to leave a wee legacy for their kids.

    Most importantly, I love connection, and my blog has added to my life. Folk have told me it’s added to theirs, too, just having a place where they can be themselves, on good days and bad. If I weigh up the pros and cons and blogging ever stops feeling like that, I’ll stop.

    Thanks, Barbara.
    PS Totally off the subject, but have you any idea why WordPress (or AOL or my server :( ) has stopped sending me email alerts when I get comments or when I’ve subscribed to other people’s comments?
    .-= Check out janice´s awesome post: Does anxiety make you over-explain? =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      You’re welcome Janice,

      I hope you’re feeling better soon. When we’re not feeling 100% it’s hard to feel creative, let alone maintain any sort of consistency with a blog. I also think it’s at those times when we shouldn’t worry about our blogs, but instead concentrate on our health. Blogs and our blogging buddies will wait for us.

      I know exactly what you’re saying about blogging forcing us into the 21st century of technology. Although at times it can be a struggle, once we figure it out, the learning process made it all worth it.

      What you’ve said about the connections we make with our blogs is very true. Your words help others, and as you know, some will read and not comment, and you’re helping them, too. It goes back to that ripple effect which is very powerful.

      P.S. On the subject of why you’re not getting notified of comments, double check the email address you’ve used to make sure there are no typos in it. If that’s not the problem, you might want to think of switching to an RSS feed (If you need help with that, let me know).

  34. DaphneNo Gravatar says:

    I started blogging in August of this year. I blog because I want to have a forum for sharing my thoughts. It’s like an online journal. I will continue to write as long as I have something to share. I don’t want or need recognition or fame. I love to receive meaningful comments from the few who read my thoughts. That’s enough for me.
    .-= Check out Daphne´s awesome post: Who Am I? =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Daphne,

      As a new blogger, it sounds like you’ve already got the blogging “bug”. Isn’t it the greatest? I know exactly what you mean about enjoying the comments we receive. Whether it’s a few or many, they certainly make it all worthwhile.

  35. JodithNo Gravatar says:

    I’ve been writing my main blog for about 1.5 years now, but not that consistently. But I’m starting to see some real signs that it’s taking off. I’ve got over 500 subscribers, and getting over 100 uniques a day. More than that, I’m actually getting people to comment and send in questions for answers. That more than anything else is encouraging me to keep going. The silence before was just overwhelming, but now that I’m getting enough feedback to know that people are actually reading the blog, the excitement has caught on again.
    .-= Check out Jodith´s awesome post: Ask the Admin: Set up Recurring Tasks at 8 Month Intervals =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Jodith,

      That’s GREAT news. I know for awhile you weren’t updating your blog and I missed that as you shared such good tips. How exciting your blog is getting found and readers are participating. That feedback makes a huge difference, doesn’t it?

      I’ll have to come by and catch up on your great administrative tips.

  36. I suspect many don’t realize that it will take a couple of years; however, I want to make a very important point. Making money does not automatically happen. For many of us we write because we are passionate about sharing what we have researched or learned from experience. It just never really was about the money.

    If we want our blogs to make money we have to focus on that aspect and monetize them wisely. To that end I recently compiled links to the best resources I knew of that teach how to go about doing just that. I’ll make sure that post is in the CommentLuv box for this comment.

    Barbara, if you have an offering that belongs on that page do be sure to let me know. Even though I know which bloggers teach best it is not always easy to find their best and most recent offerings.
    .-= Check out Internet Strategist @GrowMap´s awesome post: Top How to Make Money Blogging Resources =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Internet Strategist,

      That’s true. Many aren’t aware how long it can take a blog to reach it’s potential and then grow from there.

      Making money from a blog does entail using the right tools. Thank you so much for linking to your post on that subject. It’s one of the best I’ve seen in a long time.

      Unfortunately I don’t have an offering for your post as I don’t teach others how to make money with their blogs. LOL. That’s something I need to spend time learning myself – and when I do, I know exactly where to go to get the scoop on that. :)

  37. BingoNo Gravatar says:

    two years seems about right. I think that it’s all about diversification. i started writing jokes and satire, then SEO and lifestyle, now I promote my favourite game :) in terms of money: they all do their part in putting food on the table!
    .-= Check out Bingo´s awesome post: Players love summer’s new bingo sites =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Bingo,

      I’m guessing your favorite game is Bingo. Yeah? :)

      Thank you for verifying what others are saying – two years appears to be the length of time before we start seeing results.

      • BingoNo Gravatar says:

        Thanks Barbara. A pleasure to find your blog!

        Bingo is the game I promote yes, though as I said I find that diversification is how I have been able to get by: earning some here and some there on different niches / angles.

        The exposure of running different sites also helps pulling some side jobs – design, SEO / SEM contracts. I couldn’t rely on them at this stage, but they’re goldmines when they come along!
        .-= Check out Bingo´s awesome post: Cheeky Bingo offer 10% cashback =-.

        • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

          Hi again Bingo,

          I like your idea of diversifying by having more than just one niche/site. When we have multiple talents, it’s a good way of picking up additional income which will hopefully lead to “problogging” (for lack of a better word).

  38. KeithNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara!

    I have been blogging very close to one year. I do still love it and I have learned so much, not just about blogging, but about myself too. My writing has improved as I am finding my “voice” and I am more excited now than ever!

    Thoughts of quitting are not in my mind at all, in fact, I plan to launch a new blog after the first of the year. I love my current blog but it’s scope is too narrow for all I wish to write about and do.

    Am I happy where my blogging has led me too? Absolutely! I have found my true passion and I have met several wonderful people. It has been a very rewarding experience. I have been at it now for nearly 8,760 hours and I’m just getting warmed up!

    Thanks for this article Barbara!
    .-= Check out Keith´s awesome post: Keep The Faith! =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      You’re welcome Keith,

      How exciting. You’ll have another blog. When it’s live, make sure you come by and let me know about it so I can check it out.

      Blogging does that, doesn’t it – help us to find our voice. Then on top of that, it helps to hone our writing skills. It’s really a win-win. Add to that, the cyber friends we make. That’s like the icing on the cake.

  39. Chris EdgarNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara — thanks for this. I’ve been blogging since December 2007, so it’s almost been two years, and my blog’s traffic hasn’t expanded to the massive size I originally wanted — however, I’ve been putting together a good-sized e-mail list from people who have found the blog helpful, and I have a lot of marketing channels at this point, including magazine articles, radio interviews, and live engagements. And I got much of the content for those from stuff I’d written on my blog! So although I’m probably not going to be the next Steve P. in blogging terms I think it’s all good.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      You’re welcome Chris,

      Your comment reminded me of how success is not necessarily measured by the traffic we receive, but by the other resources we acquire. Like for you and your email list. That could propel you in a new direction all because of your blog.

      And like you said, your blog archives are fodder for other endeavors. Isn’t that great how that works?

      You may not become the next Steve P[avlina], but you’ll be the first Chris E – blogger extraordinaire . :)

  40. HilaryNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara .. I’ve been blogging for 9 months and have just posted my 200th story .. these I consider my stock .. as I have had other priorities; being a part of this wonderful community opens up doors to see the possibilities ahead and I am now moving forward to explore these and settle into see how I can develop some ideas.

    Very interesting topic that you’ve raised ..
    Hilary Melton-Butcher
    Positive Letters Inspirational Stories
    .-= Check out Hilary´s awesome post: Picnic on "the Coat Hanger Bridge", a Living Wall and the 200th … =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you Hilary,

      You’ve been one busy gal – 200 posts in nine months.

      Yes. There are many possibilities for us to pursue. All it takes is to find the ones that suit us and help us to continue on our journey.

      Do keep me posted on your future endeavors.

  41. ToddNo Gravatar says:

    Great topic, Barbara!

    Although I have posts dating as early as 12/07, I did not officially blog until roughly 7 months ago. The earlier posts correspond to the original release dates of the cartoons.

    I also created a few short-lived techie blogs on blogger to test the waters, but I really wanted to host a blog myself. I even made a big mistake and tore down the website for a period of months.

    What really drew me back in was the desire to draw cartoons and also to blog about some of my techie interests as well. I am sure the blog’s duration will be more important at some point in the future, but right now the most important thing is to post regularly. :)
    .-= Check out Todd´s awesome post: CYA =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Todd,

      So your blogging experience dates back almost two years. I like your idea of starting a blogger blog to test the waters. Many bloggers go all out only to find blogging isn’t what they thought it would be – and quit.

      You’re right. Posting regularly is important. And with you and your talent to create cartoons, it will also help to get (and keep) your name out there.

  42. PeggyNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara,

    I started Serendipity Smiles in the summer of 2008. It started out as a mish mash…then in April 2009 I got a dose of clarity pills and took them…I split out my Stepmom stuff and created a website just for stepmoms (http://thestepmomstoolbox.com) Then, as I kept taking my clarity pills, I found two things that have helped me in my blogging “career” – Word Press Goldmine (not an advertisement, just good solid directions to create a self-hosted website by myself) and I then found Darren at Problogger – and subscribed to his blog…and yes, even bought one of his eBooks on “Build a better blog in 30 days” Took the advice from many of the activities and it has paid off in many ways.

    My stepmom’s blog is self-hosted (why? Because the site outgrew WordPress’ free platform) and I will be, very soon, converting Serendipity to a self-hosted platform as well.

    My stepmom list/platform/audience has grown significantly. I am well connected in the published stepmom community and have a “mini” following of my own. In fact, I’m starting an internet radio show in November!

    Because I have taken Darren’s advice to heart – what it means to be a good blogger and have a good blog, Serendipity is growing faster than I expected. This is my baby…this is what feeds my soul…I’m connected to amazing people in the “life transforming” “positive vibe” community. I’m also connected to a writing community that I’m learning so much from! My blog is a place where I get to share what I’ve learned and in return, I grow from each connection I make there.

    Two years of waiting for something to happen is a small sacrifice to make. The rewards I’ve gained to date far surpass the wait.

    Peggy

    PS – Last Friday, I received an email from a marketing rep at Holt publishing…she found me because of a post. Not too shabby…
    .-= Check out Peggy´s awesome post: Autum’s Last Hoorah =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Congratulations Peggy,

      You’ll have to keep me posted on what happens with Holt Publishing. That is SO exciting. And just think, it’s all because you started blogging.

      Your story is the kind I love to hear. How bloggers follow their hearts and because of that, find not only a home in blogosphere, but their voice, as well. The idea to split your blog was ingenious. Now you can keep your stepmom articles in one place and your “baby” separate.

      You go girl….

  43. DotNo Gravatar says:

    HI Barbara, I’m not sure you need more comments!! I’ve been blogging just over a year and I’m delighted with where blogging has taken me because I’ve made friends who have more in common with me than some of my “real life” friends. What would make me quit? Not having the time because I needed to use it to make money is one, and running out of things to say is another, but much less likely. What keeps me going? The friendships. I suppose I could stay in touch with those people without blogging, but it would be harder.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Dot,

      *smiles* Because I love hearing what you all have to say in the comments, I never tire of them.

      That is a key to continuing blogging, isn’t it? The friendships we make. Like you said, we could stay in contact with them outside of a blog, but it wouldn’t be as much fun, plus with blogging we get to meet even more fine people. It’s a win-win, isn’t it?

  44. I’ve been blogging a bit over a year. I am extremely happy with how it’s going and see nothing but bigger and better things ahead as I evolve and learn.

    I have up and down days but would probably only quit if I fell gravely ill and could no longer type.

    What keep me going is partly creative expression, partly because you bloggin’ buds just keep on coming back!
    .-= Check out Jannie Funster´s awesome post: One Blogging Buddy Down, 758 To Go =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Jannie,

      You’re right. We all have up and down days, but our blogging buds keep us motivated to continue sharing. Aren’t they the greatest?

  45. I blogged for 2 years before turning the blog from an online diary into a serious venture. Yes, I saw significant increase in a few months and am now just over a year (14 months) into the new “business” mode of the blog and I expect within the next 10 months I’ll see much bigger growth but really I don’t expect full-on success for another few years.

    Success takes time and I’m willing to put in that time.
    .-= Check out Alex Fayle | Someday Syndrome´s awesome post: Controlling Creativity: Timeblocking My Way to Success =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Alex,

      Well put. Success does take time. And the best part of that is the journey. I know you’ll enjoying each step of the way.

      Kudos to you Alex for taking that first step to turn your blog into a serious venture.

  46. KarinaNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara,

    I’ve been blogging for 2 weeks. Haha, yeah not the two years everyone above has been blogging for, but a measly 2 weeks. I have another blog that I set up as a means for family and friends to keep up to date with my recent move to another continent, but that doesn’t get much traffic besides my family and friends and that’s okay, because I intended it to be just that – personal.

    But then I decided, why not share a blog with the world? Why not try and reach out to as many people as I can. I want to inspire people, and although I feel like I’m still a bit uncertain on how exactly I will do that, I decided to just start. And, I have to say that so far I’m very happy with my “success”. By that I mean, I’ve learned how to set it all up, host it myself etc. I’ve learned quite a bit about the whole process. I still have so much more to learn, but for two weeks up, I think I’m doing okay. Traffic is not really anything to talk about, but I’m okay with that. In fact, even if my blog will stay steady at the traffic it has now, I will continue writing as long as I can. Why? Because perhaps one post will one day inspire one of my few readers, and that’s all that matters to me. :)
    .-= Check out Karina´s awesome post: My thank you. =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Karina,

      Congratulations on starting a blog. Even though your blog is only two weeks old, we all started the same – with one post and a dream for what blogging might hold.

      Just keep doing what your doing, stay authentic, enjoy the process and you’ll do great.

      Happy blogging Karina! I’ll be seeing you again soon.

  47. B B KentNo Gravatar says:

    I like your blog design, my eye was immediately drawn to the pen and that meant I read your blog name and tag line before reading the post. Clever (intentionally?).

    Two years still to go on my blog!
    .-= Check out B B Kent´s awesome post: Deal =-.