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Long-term Goal-setting for Successful Bloggers

This guest post is by Chris The Traffic Blogger.

Short-term goals can be devastating.

In six months I lost over 60 pounds working out and eating smaller portions. I started off just running every day because I was sick of being overweight. Then I began eating less and obeying simple diets and workout routines. Things went well for a while, but then suddenly I started gaining weight again. Before long I had everything back—and this time around, I had to work much harder to lose the same amount of weight.

Just like someone who’s losing weight for the first time, a person who’s new to blogging is filled with energy and incredible amounts of motivation. Each post feels new and fresh, and every additional reader increases the blogger’s enthusiasm.

But this enthusiasm is often short-lived, as the excitement gives way to repetitiveness and the blog readership plateaus. This is why new bloggers don’t usually make it past the first six months. Actually, it’s not much different than any other hobby in this world.

I know it seems incredibly obvious, but short-term goals are rarely sustainable. Putting forth too much effort for a short period of time leads us to burn out and give up on the things we care about.

Without long-term goals our short-term ones are meaningless.

Sustainable long-term goals

What the person dieting and the new blogger don’t realize is that they need to change their lives permanently, not just for the next few months. So how can we set long-term goals that result in better short-term ones? Let’s start off with five tips to help you begin picking a ten-year goal.

That’s right, a ten-year goal.

One small caveat to this task is the obvious fact that the internet and our world changes at a remarkably fast pace. Your-ten year goal needs to be somewhat flexible to account for these changes. Keep this in mind as you read through these tips.

1. Choose the perfect you

For my own personal goal, I see myself as the owner of at least a dozen gaming-related websites. Unfortunately I decided upon this goal a little late, having just sold one of my cash cows for $50,000. That right there is the perfect example of the problems that arise when short-term goals (in this case, saving enough money for my first house) become your only priority. Had I kept a long-term goal of building twelve sustainable gaming sites, I wouldn’t have sold it.

When you decide on the perfect you, I want you to focus on something you truly enjoy doing. Don’t worry whether or not you’re successful at it yet, as this is a ten-year goal. You have a while to get there!

2. Make changes to your lifestyle

With the perfect you planted firmly in the center of your mind, there probably will need to be drastic changes made to your current lifestyle (that’s right, to your non-internet persona as well).

In my case, I need to put aside more time for blogging by making sure that I remove other distractions. If I don’t work out as soon as I get home, then my work-out is going to interfere with my blogging time. If I don’t prepare for a podcast, then I’m going to have a poor performance.

Make small but steady changes to your lifestyle that will slowly but surely lead to your ten-year goal. By far, the most important changes will come in the form of minor time management adjustments.

3. Surround yourself with encouragement

Before I had this ten-year goal of running a conglomerate of game-related sites, I wasted quite a bit of time with people who doubted my abilities. These were people who would get angry at me for spending another fifteen minutes polishing a blog post instead of shooting the bull with them on Skype.

If your friends don’t encourage you to fulfill your ten-year goal then they aren’t really your friends. Surround yourself with people who will encourage and help you obtain your dreams.

4. Walk, don’t run

A ten-year goal is neither an excuse for laziness nor a signal to overdo it. Take your time and avoid both extremes in terms of the steps you take to reach that goal. With a span of ten years, you have plenty of time to carefully wade your way through life making sure to always move forward one step at a time.

In saying this, don’t take months, weeks, or even days off from your goal. Even if you’re on vacation, attempt to stay mentally and physically fit so that you can go right back to work afterwards.

5. Failure is okay

I know in the previous tip I mentioned always moving forward, but there are times that you will fall flat on your face. When you fail, pick yourself up and simply mark that door as the wrong way to go, before carefully deciding on your next door.

Learning from your failures is by far the most important thing you can do to stay on track for your ten-year goal. You think that everyone who succeeds in life got to that point without tripping up multiple times? Try hundreds of times; just look at Edison and his attempts at creating the light bulb!

Has the ten-year goal helped me?

Yes, setting a ten-year goal has definitely helped me to keep my blog in perspective. I’m now making decisions that enable me to keep on track for that long-term goal instead of jumping at short-term benefits.

Take my latest Diablo 3 Gold Guide blog, which has had 1,000,000 hits in three months and earned over $30,000 in revenue. I could sell this for $100,000 easily, or I could cultivate it and grow it to double its current size in one year.

Think about my ten-year goal. Which option makes more sense? Obviously holding onto the blog, getting people to manage it for me, and expanding to new niches is the correct answer! I have my heart set on writing blogs for additional games and I’m super-excited to keep taking steps closer to my ten-year goal. (The details of how I made so much money with this brand new blog are explained in Another $10,000 Product Launch.)

Remember that the entire purpose of a ten-year goal is to change your short-term goals so that they reflect the bigger picture. Truly, a ten-year goal becomes a positive obsession in your life, and a gradual change that will greatly influence your success. Avoid fads and short-term riches that pull you away from the positive nature of this new ten-year goal of yours.

What’s your ten year-goal? Who is the ideal you? Let me know in the comments, or on Twitter. Let’s use the hashtag #tenyeargoal and get the conversation started!

Chris “The Traffic Blogger” writes to help bloggers learn how to drive traffic, build relationships and earn revenue through blogging. His most recent efforts have been on teaching others What to Tweetto get more followers and make money on Twitter.

About Guest Blogger
This post was written by a guest contributor. Please see their details in the post above.
  1. I really love how you show the example to create more success with blogging Chris. Looks like you have your own make money with blog blueprint there.

    Thanks a lot for sharing. This post is not just unique, but full of practical tips anyway.

    Thanks once again Chris. :D

    • Well thanks Aqif that means a lot. I do believe I’ve stumbled upon something big with video game blogging, and I wish that I had realized this years ago when I started.

      Now it’s time to set long term goals and stick to them, which is something I’m trying hard to hang my hat on now.

  2. I could not agree more Chris! I think what you are saying is very important because of the nature of the time we are living in. When I speak to older people I hear them talk about how younger people seem to change their mind about a lot of thing, as if everything is disposable. Perhaps this transcends in to goals in our personal and business life too? I have been pursuing my goal to have one the best online guitar tuition services out there for a couple of years and have started to progress a lot more recently. If I had given up when I lost focus it would have been one short lived project. Guess the message is to evaluate when stuff is not going as well as you imagined instead of disposing of it.

    Great work Chris.


  3. Nice article as it’s something I’ve been thinking about lately.

    I don’t have a 10-year goal, but then my plans might not be as big as yours. My plan is a 2-3 year one, where I will continue to grow my blog slowly while continuing to freelance in my mornings and work on the blog at night.

    I’m just aiming for $2,000 per month. Even $1,000 per month would allow me to run it full-time. I can’t wait.

  4. Lovely post Chris. A timely read indeed. I’ve just finished compiling my ten year plan. In fact, I’ve set it up as a blog with mu 10 year bucket list.

    All your points are so important and hit home.

    I’m launching a new blog on 1 October and I’ll definitely be reading your post on “Another $10 000 Product launch”.

    Once again, great post!

  5. Agreed — the examples are great. It’s definitely reassuring to hear how someone started the same way we did — and has blogs that are worth as much or more than $100,000! Thanks for the motivation.


  6. I feel and share your pain as you gain weight and my new blog readership plateaus or declines.
    Wise words all the same. Thanks

  7. Surrounding yourself with encouragement alone can drastically increase your results and long term motivation.

    Those are some impressive results with the Diablo site! That game had a pretty massive launch to say the least!


  8. It is great on how you relate a real life weight loss plan with the blogging plan.

    There had been too many advice that people should keep the objectives realistic, short and attainable but at the same time, people forget as well what the ultimate goal is. This could be one mistake that many bloggers out there didn’t realize and that is also the reason why I couldn’t move further with one of my blogs.

  9. This is a very insightful post. A very good long-term plan will indeed help us towards our goals and keep us going.

  10. Hi Chris,

    Thanks for sharing the importance of long term goal. I personally think that it’s important to maintain a long term goals and at the time time slice the goals into multiple short term goals so as to make it easier to digest, take action and monitor.

    To be frank, I do not have a long term goal that spand across 10 years, I only have a 3 years plan which is having at least 50% of my current income from online ventures.


  11. I remember my First Six months it was a roller coaster, you heard lots of blogger’s success stories and get hyped by it and choose a wrong way the “Fast pace money and all.”
    So One need to Control his Environment and keep his blogging very Consistent. Blogging is worth waiting it will test your patience .

  12. Very motivating post. Thanks for this. I like “Walk, don’t run.”

  13. Some people use a short term goal while other people use a long term goal and both would work well for them depending on their mind set. By setting yourself as an example and the success of your sites as a motivation for others then some people may think that having a long term goal would be better for them.

    Thanks for sharing these tips. And really surround yourself with positive thinking people and people that believe in you. This will make a lot of difference.

  14. You know how sometimes you read exactly what you need to read, at exactly the right moment?

    This post was exactly what I needed to read today, and now I’m off to pencil in a 1, 5 & 10 year plan!

    Thank you so much!

  15. I’ve been working off of a five year plan for awhile now, and it has really helped me clarify my goals. But I like the idea of going out even farther… five years is the me-in-progress, but ten years can easily be the perfect-me, and that’s a fun idea to work towards.


  16. All this makes perfect sense. Sometimes short-term goals or short-term gratification can really harm or impede our productivity.
    The Internet is to blame as well (or maybe it’s our use of the Internet) for a lot of un-productivity. If we make a plan and stick to it, these frills and distractions won’t take us away from what we really can achieve.

  17. Hi Chris! great points but for me setting long terms goals are great way to achieve it but to getting that goals we should divide that into shorter portions and that’s how you can judge where and how continuously you are getting and achieving your goals.

    Thanks for sharing great information. :-)

  18. Focusing on a long term goal/plan is key – I like the real world examples that apply.

  19. Chris,

    Nice post! How’ve you been? You’d definitely know about long term goals.
    The way you planned out the Diablo site is the kind of legwork that virtually no bloggers do, yet you can see the kind of dividends it pays.

    Make a imediate plan, short term plan, and then several long term plans, which you can adjust as necessary. I have to admit that I think about htis constantly, yet actually rarely take the time to write down a formal plan. Actually committing a business (or blogging) plan to paper is one of the things that has the highest correlation to success.


  20. Thanks Chris
    I found this information very useful.
    I never went beyond 3-6 months plans. And so was in question about starting new site.
    Now being collage student I decided to final up with 3-year plan to slowly make my way.

  21. Chris, what blogging platform do you use? I see you have a lot of great tools over there for collecting email address to build you email marketing list. I know how to do that stuff the old fashioned way (programming it)…but if there’s a nice product out there already I would be interested in using it. Suggestions?

    I’m using blogger for my blog right now and I’m not sure it’s the best option.

    Please let us know! :)

    Take care,

    Gary Tharaldson

  22. Great read. Ten years is a long time. I prefer a 5 year goal, but that’s just me…

  23. Great post!! I’m always encouraging people to set goals of 3-5 years, but 10 years is even better. I have more than 5 successful blogs and it definitely takes time to build and monetize them, but it always pays off if you stand the test of time.

  24. I really appreciate your post. Nice info given by your Guest bloger.

  25. Thanks Chris.
    My motivation died out after few months of blogging. But thanks to problogger and it’s nice community, I continued and now almost close to one year, I’m seeing the importance of long term goals. Sometimes you feel that nothing is happening and that you hardly move forward. But once in a while you see nice things happening and bursts of visitors, and revenue, which is always nice as a blogger.

  26. I want my blog to be informative, helpful and inspiring for writers and lovers of travel…both armchair and actual. Two loves of mine I am drawn to blog about. Thanks for the motivation!

  27. thanks for the tip da trick, it really helped me As with the beginner in the virtual world, in particular blog or blogger

    In life it takes a gradual process, day after day, month after month year after year, there will be no direct successful start anything for granted

    I agree to achieve something desirable, then the short-term planning and long term should support each other

  28. This article really breaks it down what is necessary to achieve long-term success success with a blog.

    I think one aspect it cannot be emphasized enough is the focus on building the habit of continuously collecting ideas and turning these ideas into great articles.

    As every blogger knows, once you break the chain off regularly blogging, it is increasingly difficult to restart your blogging habit again.

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