Every so often we are prompted to consider the path we’re travelling; today that reflection has turned to my blog. I’ve been assessing the original goal I started with and wondering what to do since Curiosities, Castles and Coffee Shops has surpassed those initial objectives. Today I’m going to assess the blog against the original goal and then considering how far the journey has brought me, I wonder where I might go next.
The original goal
Curiosities was originally started in July 2022 to create self-accountablity in trying to improve my health and fitness. My goal was to be out and about: visiting museums, historic monuments, coffee shops or whatever else takes my fancy; and have the stamina and energy to do that without feeling exhausted or needing to stop to rest for hours, or days, on end. I was determined that CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) wasn’t going to run my life for me.
Curiosities was intended to encourage me to share my visits, experiences etc through my posts. The hope was that knowing I had to publish a post would keep me on track, making the various visits etc. I’m sure anyone reading my blog regularly will know that while I may be posting, the adventures are less frequent than intended.
A secondary goal was ensuring a better work-life balance, so I’m not all work and no play, 24-7. While the primary goal hasn’t been met, my work-life balance is healthier.
Evolution of the blog
In July Curiosities had a primarily touristic focus, sharing my escapades to various locations (I was on holiday in Sheffield, England) and had a little focus on my health and living with CFS. I guess in the grand scheme of things 4 months is not a long time, but in that time my blog has developed an identity (or is that my identity to come through?), breaking through the restrictions of the original goal. I’d still write about travels, visits and coffee shops, but I’m now diversifying into academic/study skills, HR and employment matters and some general musings about my blogging experiences alongside anything else that sparks my interest.
Changing goals for the blog
I’ve been reflecting a bit about rewriting some of my blog pages so they more accurately reflect where I am today. This was also prompted by a recent blog post by a fellow blogger (which you can read here). Alongside refreshing my ‘about me’ information, I need to think about the goals for my blog (thanks Renard for a recent post about the need for blogs to have clear goals). Therefore this is also a good opportunity to consider what I want for my blog – is it sufficient to simply want to write, or does there need to be more substance? Goals probably need to be more focused (SMART), so here are my goals:
- To write about things I feel excited or passionate about
- To contribute to the knowlege available to help people (to produce informative and helpful posts)
- To be an active member of the blogging community
What about the original goal?
Despite my blog failing to achieve its original goal, I’ve been having fun blogging about other topics. Even though I have visits etc to share and there are a lot of sites and venues, even in Glasgow, I’d like to explore, I’ve been happy exploring other interests.
Rather than being a means to an end, Curiosities has become something more meaningful in its own right. So while I may have failed in my initial objectives, my blog is, in my opinion, successful and something I’m very proud of.
I will continue with my visits etc because they are linked with the lifestyle I desire, but I’ll share the resulting experiences because I want to share them, not because I have to.
Getting back on track – or onwards and upwards
When originally mapping out this post my thoughts were on what should have happened, but this post is about the present and future – so getting back on track isn’t the right direction; its about where I go from here. Setting the path for the future, even while recognising that its likely that that will change; I’m not focused on achieving the same goal. Blogging is dynamic so in reality, the blog has and will continue to evolve.
From this point I plan to post 3-4 times a week with scheduled posts on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. I need to focus on consistency, restraining my enthusiasm and eagerness to share everything immediately. I need to start scheduling more. A couple of sites I’ve found really helpful in guiding me during my blogging journey, including the importance of scheduling are Renard’s World and Hugh’s Views and News
I will continue with my current foci:
- Academic skills
- The management of people and the world of work
- Personal Development
- Tourism/Travel and History
- Anything else that takes my fancy
- If there’s something my readers/follows would like to see covered, I’m open to suggestions
I will need to revisit my pages, and with that, I do ask myself if I should change the name of the blog – but maybe that’s for the musings of another post but I do like the name, so maybe I’ll keep it.
Where will Curiosities take me next?
I’m happy with how my blog has developed and grown since July, but to ensure its long term success I need to work on consistency and reliability. I need to work on my own self-discipline to not post everything as soon as its ready but to make use of the scheduling tools provided by WordPress (I’m already learning the benefits as the post which went live on Tuesday was scheduled in advance – I had a bad migraine so I was able to relax and look after myself knowing that my blog was able to look after itself).
I also think I’ll keep things a bit more focused so there’s some overlap with the more academic themes rather than the content being too random – but who knows maybe random and spontaneous topic choices will work too
I’m reviewing and exploring, so I’m open to any constructive feedback or ideas
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