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7 Good Things that Blogging Brings

Posted By Guest Blogger 6th of March 2011 Miscellaneous Blog Tips 0 Comments

This guest post is by Arsene Hodali of The Good Life? | dancePROOF.

Why should you blog? I can’t tell you. I don’t like telling people what to do, or why they should do something.

Instead, I want to show you a couple of things that, through my own experiences and research, I’ve deducted happen to the majority of people once they start to blog.

1. You become a better researcher

Trust me, I’m the last person I’d expect to find doing proper research. Yet for this post alone I spent an hour on ProBlogger purely researching. I researched past posts to see which did well, which didn’t, and why. I researched to see which topic I could bring a little more clarity to. I researched the comments and archives to see how people responded to each post. And I looked at at least 35+ posts on 20+ other blogs to narrow down the few unspoken benefits that each of them have gained over time.

Basically, I did my homework.

The current me is drastically different from the person I was a year ago. Back then, when I started blogging, I disliked research. In fact, dislike is too soft a word. It reminded me too much of college essays and citations.

But as I got more skilled at blogging, I noticed that in my quest to provide better content, I was spending less time writing than I was researching. And soon research became the back-bone of all my posts, the edge I had over others who were unwilling to put in the time. And in all unlikeliness, I became that which I once hated: a researcher.

2. You become less pushy and more helpful

I reached a point about six months ago where I stopped blogging completely. I stopped because I started getting more traffic and thus started connecting with more people on a personal level. And this scared me.

What gave me the right to tell someone what to do? Nothing. But, over time, I realized that my breakdown was actually a break-through. I realized that although I have no right to tell someone what to do, I do have an obligation to inform others of what I believe is the best solution available, and to let them take it from there. I have no right to tell you what to do. But I do have an obligation to share information that’s been instrumental to me bettering my life, in hopes that you’ll be able to use it to better yours.

The changes become noticeable once you learn that blogging is less the hand of the strict teacher, than of the helpful friend. The teacher force-feeds knowledge, expecting people to learn everything they teach (and quickly), while the helpful friend offers a guiding hand, one which shows the correct path without laying a hand on the peoples’ backs.

That’s why good bloggers learn how to improve the user experience of their sites, why they increase their site’s searchability and navigation, why they spend an inordinate amount of time coming up with the best headlines, why they learn SEO, and why they obsess about all the methods of content delivery. Because the teacher expects you to come to them to learn, while the helping friend seeks you out. Because the friend doesn’t necessarily want to teach, but help with information (there’s a subtle difference).

3. You become a better speaker

I’ve always been a sucker for skills that help us in more than one aspect of life.

Blogging has helped people understand the importance of good communication. It’s shown the ignorant that yes, content is key, but content without voice might as well be non-existent.

It’s shown the geniuses of the world that if they spoke as they thought (non-linear and chaotic), they’d forever be misunderstood. It’s shown them that taking out a piece of paper and jotting down the main points of a concept is not something the stupid and forgetful do, but an act reserved for the wise.

Blogging has shown the world that clarification and simple words matter most. That big words don’t necessarily impress; they confuse. And that taking pride in someone else’s confusion about your message is shameful.

It’s taught the world that a good, clear, strong voice is something to be desired and worked towards.

4. You get your ideas in order

Half the time I blog, I don’t blog for others, but for myself. I blog to find out what my beliefs and standings on a particular topic are.

To publish a decent blog post, you have to go through the research and clarification phases I mentioned above. Once that’s done, and you hit Publish, you get to see how people react to your ideas, whether they agree or not, and why.

Through research, I’m finding information that supports and goes against my ideas and notions, and I’m bettering my understanding of current topics even more. Through revision and proofreading I’m clarifying the ideas, making them less abstract and more concrete. Through blog comments I’m seeing how my ideas and notions vibe with others. And through my replies to those comments I’m seeing my own standing on an issue more clearly.

This is the main reason why I blog. I don’t see myself as truly grasping a concept until I’ve blogged about it.

5. You find yourself

It’s always fascinating to see how blogging and personal development are so strongly intertwined.

I think it’s because blogging forces you to take sides. It forces you to niche if you want to succeed. And thus you go through the journey of finding what your personal interests are, what you’re passionate about, and what makes you the person you are.

When I started blogging I wrote posts that angered or excited people—posts that made people take a side. I blogged with a strong and demanding voice. But in finding my niche, and thus myself, I turned my act around 180 degrees.

I realized that I’m more inclined towards the calm and personal approach. I found that I’m much more at peace talking with a gentler voice, showing people my ideas and why I think they’re whorthwile rather than forcing them upon others. And I found that I disliked separating my career from my personal life. I don’t separate them in real-life (one feeds the other), so why should I separate them on a blog?

Blogging makes you be specific, and take sides. And in doing so, it makes you learn about yourself.

6. You become your own motivator when you’re down

Face it: we all have those days (sometimes weeks) when we’re down. We stop trusting our own skills, our own judgments, and our own ideas. Guess what helps you keep the gloom at bay? Blogging.

Using myself as an example, whenever I feel I’m no good at writing, I open the browser, visit my blog, and read some of my past posts. You wouldn’t believe the power this simple act has on my mood. In reading my past blog posts I realize that I’m not in fact as horrible a blogger as I think I am.

Sometimes your best motivator is yourself, and your past actions. But you can’t start motivating yourself until you start recording your good work—until you start blogging.

7. You become a better writer

This is quite obvious, but so often overlooked. I think it’s because being a good writer in itself has so many titles.

A good writer could be a good conveyor of resourceful information, so that those seeking specific resources find them. A good writer could be someone who abbreviates large amounts of text into one tiny paragraph without losing any content, so that people who are too busy to read get the gist of it. A good writer could be someone who tells a story with emotion—one who connects with the audience on a emotional level. And a good writer can be someone who takes the reader on a journey up the valley of the rising plot, over the hill that is the climax, and finally to the destination that is the denouement.

Every writer has each of the above traits in different amounts. And thus being a good writer is different for everyone because what you believe makes a good writer could be entirely different from what I believe. All the points I’ve mentioned above are what I believe make a good writer, and a good blogger.

What good things have happened to you since you started blogging?

About the Author: Arsene Hodali examines life through whimsical thoughts, questions, and actions over at The Good Life? | dancePROOF. From surviving the Rwandan Genocide to living on two hours of sleep a day, he’s experienced some pretty wild things. To quote a certain hippy, “He’s seen things man.” Outside of whimsical ponderings, you can find him running “Quotes” Clothing. He asks you to ponder life’s mysteries with him.

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Comments
  1. I think these 7 things are just the start of a long,long list about the good things that blogging can do with you.
    Wow… This was a well-written sentence :).

    P.S. This is a great and useful post. Thanks for sharing. Have a nice day.

    • Thank you for commenting Akos. And of course – just the beginning, but the full post would have taken me years to write.

      • oh!!!
        really it takes years to write.I can,t belive it
        interesting post,some facts about blogging with extra wording!!!!

  2. One of the major benefits you haven’t mentioned is the connections you form with other people and potential friends you meet – granted, like Akos says you could probably expand this list to include many more things but I personally think the community aspect is right up there at the top. The ones you have mentioned pinpoint a lot of ways you can become better as a blogger from a personal skills perspective however, so good job for sharing them.

    • Great point Brent. Connecting with people rightfully deserves it’s spot on the list (at the top). Glad you mentioned it. Here’s to hoping people see your comment.

  3. This is a wonderful post.
    It feels almost as though you’ve been inside my head and figured me out. I’ve been blogging for almost two years and certainly have my discouraging days when I wish I had more traffic, made more money, helped more people. I’ll look back at this post on those days to remind myself of how far I’ve come. I could never have articulated the ways I’ve changed, but you have. Thank you for the clarity and the reminder.

    • Haha, I’m in your head!

      But seriously, thank you. I’m glad I could clarify for you what’s in your head and heart. As a writer, there’s no greater compliment than to hear that.

  4. Whole new approach to blogging, nice post Arsene Hodali

  5. 8. You make $$$

  6. Arsene,

    I could not agree with you more.

    Blogging does bring a lot of amazing qualities in us.

    I do believe I’ve become a better writer and researcher thanks to blogging.

    I’m looking forward to the next chapter in my blogging career as I move into video-interviews and video blogging.

    Thanks for this insightful post!

    Krizia

  7. Brent @ Millionaire Studio – that’s a really good point.

    Those relationships are invaluable!

    Krizia

  8. I think blogging has also helped me be more confident in myself. I have made a lot of new friendly relationships just by blogging and sharing too.

    Thanks for sharing these great points! :)

  9. Agreed with Akos!!! This has been my own journey, and I can think of many more benefits! Thanks for sharing!

  10. Becoming a better writer is what blogging really improved in my life. I a, dyslexic so for years have stayed away from reading and writing. But practice makes perfect. What better place to do that than blogging.

    My spelling and grammar have improved 100 fold.

    It’s still a struggle. But then life ain’t no walk in the park.

    • Wow, I can’t tell with your writing that you’re dyslexic.

      I’m glad you had enough heart and vigor to keep going even when the going got tough.

  11. This is a great post and gives me hope that I am getting something from all this effort! And hopefully some money will follow!
    Bernice
    Change what you can, accept what you can’t

  12. Point number 8: You earn money from the comfort of your own home. :D

  13. The finding yourself part is what I like most from blogging.

  14. I’m not in agreement with your approach to saying that you aren’t teaching, you’re sharing. A great teacher is someone that can establish a relationship with the people that they teach. They command the attention of the audience and cause them to take action.

    To me, blogging is about establishing that relationship and causing them to take action. It is teaching others what they don’t know, even if it means you’re posts are about discovering what you don’t know.

    • Please forgive my grammatical mistakes in my post. I’m working at improving grammar, but I did not proof read my post before submission.

    • I say sharing rather than teaching because there’s a line that teachers can’t cross no matter what, no teacher can become ‘friends’ with just one of their students, nor become friends with all their students (we live in a world of lawsuits, and that’s just begging for one). So most teachers keep a reasonable distant between themselves and their students.

      So, I call it sharing. Because blogging walks that line that teachers cannot touch. And because in our society ‘teacher’ has a worse connotation that ‘friend’. Wait… hasn’t it always? (I’d rather listen to a friend than a teacher.)

  15. Great post! Going back and reading your own posts is quite eye opening. I recently did that as I approached my one year mark last month. It helped me see where the most comments were, which directly relates to content. Although, a few were about issues that are a bit controversial and sparked heated debate. I love a good discussion, so I will continue to speak my mind and hear what my readers have to say pro or con.

    As for writing… blogging has improved my writing more than I would have ever imagined. And, like you, I used to hate research but now it’s something I welcome.
    Thanks for the post! I’m going to check out your blog now.

  16. About #6 – Becoming Your Own Motivator:

    Persevering in the face of possible defeat is often a difficult task–and it’s hardest when you are your only means of support. It’s hard for your friends, family, and working associates to “buy in” to what’s not already successful, because they know it involves risk of failure–and that’s something many people are absolutely terrified of.

    Think of the lengths to which people go to keep their jobs, even when they have a ton of reasons to leave. And how many people–both men and women–stay in emotionally damaging (and sometimes physically abusive) relationships because they are afraid that if things change, they could get worse. And that means failure.

    So unless you’re in the extreme minority, you MUST become your own motivator to succeed in a venue those around you know little or nothing about.

    • Great point Lea.

      Can’t argue with anything you said.

    • About # 6, I had an experience where I lost all my database due to my own carelessness. I know it is hard to accept such a huge loss but I keep in my mind that this is just a small test in my long distance running on the path of blogging.

  17. Great article Arsene. Thanks for sharing.

  18. nice post. The 7 points are just awesome. I started blogging two months ago and i am experiencing some of them already.

  19. I’d like to add that Blogging also helps you with time management and organization skills!

  20. Thanks Arsene, I love posts with 7 tips.

    Blogging indeed makes one a better writer and researcher.

  21. Great article! Being fairly new to the blogging end of things, I found a wealth of good info in here. Thanks.

  22. All True. But you forgot to mention that it also gives you a change to help people and make a difference.

  23. Thanks for your article, Arsene. I agree with your comment about getting more organized. In order to have more time to pursue blogging, you are forced to be better organized. I’ve discovered a tool called Freemind – recommended by experts I have talked about on my blogs – that helps organize your thoughts more quickly so that you write articles faster as well.

  24. This is quite interesting.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Cheers,
    Togrul

  25. Alex Kovach says: 03/06/2011 at 10:54 am

    These are all good and valid points. Once one of my teachers, who is also still a good friend, told me that being a teacher makes you a better student. The reason being that if you have to explain something to someone else you really have to stop and think the thing though and completely understand it yourself.

  26. Great points! I always thought that blogging is also a great medium for students majoring in journalism/writing. A great practice :)

  27. If a smart beginner reads this he will first do his keyword research to find out what help his audience asks for. Then he will make a catchy phrase and then apply the rest of what you describe in this article. My friend Richard Dennis has this website where you can learn how to write articles from.

    http://www.nettrafficmachine.com/tools/a.pdf

    Lawrence Bergfeld

  28. The smart part about blogging is that you get to find what help others are looking for by doing first your keyword research.

    My friend Richard Dennis has this three part description to put it all together.

    http://www.nettrafficmachine.com/tools/3.pdf

    Sincerely

    Lawrence Bergfeld

  29. Very true and inspiring post for calling out people to blog. I might have acquired all these but a couple of things I see that have changed dramatically are researching and writing. My writing has improved a lot.

    Cheers Arsene
    Jane.

  30. True! They all apply.

  31. GREAT POST!!!!

  32. Insightful blog Arsene,
    I agree with all of the above, and would add that you begin to see the world more clearly though the lens of your niche, IP or burning platform. From this perspective, more and more blog ideas and content emerges, driving all 7 of your points above. My list of potential blog posts is always expanding because I am blogging more often.

    Thanks for sharing your thinking…

  33. I really enjoyed reading your blog post. This provides a great list and insight of the benefits of blogging.

  34. Very true ! research play a vital role in blogging domain..your research work – your content /blog post decides the fate of blog.

    Have experienced a drop in the subscriber list for one of my blog when i just started to post videos. Well researched, helpful, informative content matters.

  35. I agree Blogging makes a person a better researcher and this quality is very helpful for expanding the knowledge

  36. I became better in a lot of different ways when I started blogging and it keeps making me even better until now.

  37. Great post! I KNEW there were a few good reasons I’m doing this blog ‘thing’.

    Seriously: you’re right – lots of positiveness to blogging. Thanks for the post!

  38. I like to step forward to vouch for all the points made by the author. Well done and keep it up

  39. Very good post Arsene, being able to put your thoughts in order is very challenging task which only blogging can help you accomplish.

  40. I found it important to start a particular blog with a question to pull the first time viewer/reader into reading the importance of the second sentence, which explains why, and continuing to the end.
    The question was/is “Why am I writing this blog?”

  41. Blogging allows me to experience being my own boss and running my own business. That’s a wonderful feeling.

  42. Well said. Too bad blogging and writing is too much time consuming when you have too many thinks to do. But i guess a professional writer after a good experience he would be able to write faster but most important create ideas faster

  43. Arsene –

    Great post, and I agree with all of your points. One of the things I’ve discovered through blogging is that it also allows me to see industry trends, through what posts people are searching on, that help me assist others in their business and that are helping me build my own.

    Thanks for sharing your insights.

  44. I love the reminder of these great gifts from blogging. I’d add that blogging makes you more alert and aware of the world because a good blogger is always looking for inspiration and ideas. We find those in the world around us, and the need of ideas expands our view of that world.

  45. Hey I think you missed out an important thing which blogging brings, and that is the ability to work on your blog and earn money online on a part-time basis. And with decent earnings like Darren’s problogger, the money can help buy alot of other good stuff lol.

  46. I think you’ll become a better person too because you’re constantly learning and improving.

  47. I agree with your insights, Arsene … blogging has made a big difference in the way I view my writing contributions.

    Fran

  48. More good things blogging brings – Happiness, Popularity and Income :D

  49. I also improve my writing skill through blogging and i am more expert than before
    in internet research it improves my confidence.I overcome my mistakes in spelling.
    you fill as a CEO of a one of business componey without huge investment,Are you ?

  50. Your post is very uplifting for bloggers. Blogging is a good strategy for businesses to gain more exposure on the Net and attract new clients.

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