5 Ways to Keep Moving Forward When Your Blog Dreams Turned to S***t.

A guest post by Shona Smith of  The Blithe Effect.

It was a disaster of epic proportions. All my months of dreaming, planning and creating were gone in one single discovery.

I had chosen a domain name virtually word for word the same as the highly successful blogger Gail Brenner. I had “The Flourishing Self”, she had “A Flourishing Life”. We were both writing about personal learning and growth. She had written posts for Goodlife ZEN, The Bold Life and Zen Habits, all the blogs I wanted to guest post for and worst of all she was even in the A List blogging club I had just joined.  She was connected, she was well known and she was good. Oh hell, she was great.

She was living my blog dream.

Arghhh. How could I have been so stupid. And how was I going to fix this. My first thought was to ignore it and just keep going, but in the middle of the night I woke up, anxious, thinking about it and knew deep down I had to make changes. Not only did I feel it would be wrong to keep going when our blogs were almost identical, I didn’t want to be the copycat, the one who couldn’t come up with an original idea. The Pepsi to her Coca Cola.

So I withdrew my blossoming blog and started from scratch (again). But I was cheesed off. I had loved my name, my design and my dreams for the blog. I had nurtured big plans for it. Now I had to find new ones whilst wearing a cloak of resentment, disappointment and lost momentum.

I admit I stumbled around a bit those first few days, lost, feeling miserable, cranky, full of self pity and repeating, “why?, why??”constantly to my husband.

But on the third day (yes, a bit like Jesus) I pulled myself together and got on with it.

It’s hard when things go wrong. It’s hard when you are on a path and suddenly you have to turn and face a whole new direction. And this happens when you are a new blogger. That great domain name is taken. The fab new idea you came up with is being done. A technical difficulty means starting over. But you need to keep moving, you need to stay happy and focussed. Here are some tips I used on how to do that.

1. Dont waste time – get straight back on that horse or bike or whatever you fell off and get going again. Do it as soon as you can. Don’t wait. With waiting comes doubt, waiting brings more questions than answers. So keep going and don’t wait, just do.

2. Keep focussing on the future – focus on tomorrow and all the good things it will bring rather than on the past and the things you left behind. Keep looking forward. Keep looking to your new plans,new goals and new dreams. Expend your energy getting excited about those things rather than wasting energy looking back at what could have been.

3. Look for the good thing – on reflection my new blog more deeply reflects what I am about. I still have some tinges of sadness about my old blog but mostly I am able to see that this change has been a good thing.

4. Rally support – creatively I felt dry. I had nothing. All my energy and best ideas had gone into the first blog. I needed help and support. A call for aid went out to my husband and best friend who both spent  time with me brainstorming, thinking and creating something new for me to get excited about. Getting some help is key to helping you through this process.

5. Get over it – and finally in the immortal words of his song “Move On”, George Michael says;

“Move on, yeah

Hold it together, move on, move on

Life’s so short, move on, only time will set you free

You put your tears behind you, better get yourself where you wanna be

Move on.”

And so I did.

My best friend sat down with me and asked me questions like, “What are trying to do with your blog? What do you want to say? How do you want people to feel?”

And I knew. It was very clear. “Happy and accepted”, I said, “I want people to like themselves. I want people to see themselves as I see them. Worthy, beautiful human beings. I want people to understand that what they put out in the world they will get back. And I want us all to have more fun in our lives, everyday”.

So, we brainstormed. “A Happy You”, “A Better You”, The Beautiful Self”. Nothing was quite right. Finally, we looked up the thesaurus and came across the word “blithe”. It means happy, carefree and lighthearted and then, “effect”.

The Blithe Effect.

Next, a little design tweaking from my husband, a new header, some new colours. And…

It was perfect.

I was back baby, and this time for good.

Shona loves people, life and living with a sense of joy and contentment everyday. She blogs about the impact this attitude has on our daily experiences at The Blithe Effect. Come and say hello.

27 Responses to 5 Ways to Keep Moving Forward When Your Blog Dreams Turned to S***t.

  1. Laura Finger June 23, 2011 at 12:52 am #

    Oh, sweat MOTHER OF GOD, I hear ya! I had a total melt down after I’d spent weeks from my A-list bootcamps coming up with a URL, a niche, a voice, studying every related blog I could get my hands on, and then one day a link to a link to a link led me to a blog doing the exact same thing that I wanted to do.

    They even had some cool, professional looking animated videos. I cried like a baby when I saw that.

    I decided to just be a big girl and go ahead with my blog idea. It wasn’t like I was deliberately trying to infringe on copyright.

    When I got going, I left a comment on the blog, and Mark asked me for a guest post and even gave a shout out to my blog on his Facebook page.

    You rule, Mark! Thanks for being a generous soul and a true professional.
    http://lateralaction.com/
    Laura Finger recently posted..5 signs you should be self employed

  2. guest June 23, 2011 at 1:44 am #

    Sounds like we’ve been on similar journeys Laura. Glad yours had a happy ending too!!
    Thanks so much for your comment.
    Shona.

  3. Shona - The Blithe Effect June 23, 2011 at 1:47 am #

    Sorry, guest is me (Shona).
    Shona – The Blithe Effect recently posted..How To Act Like a Big Kid and Why You Should

  4. Sarah | Move Me Abroad June 23, 2011 at 3:40 am #

    I had almost the same problem. I had a blog setup, the right domain and everything was fine but my problem was that the subject wasn’t giving me the motivation I needed to blog about it.

    So, I have recently taken the plunge to start over again with a completely new subject that I am very involved in and knowledgeable about. This time I know I can make it work.

    Good luck with it all.

  5. Shona - The Blithe Effect June 23, 2011 at 3:48 am #

    Hey good on you, that’s great!! You definitely need to be excited about your topic. Sounds like it’s going to be a big success.
    Best of luck to you too.
    Shona.
    Shona – The Blithe Effect recently posted..How To Act Like a Big Kid and Why You Should

  6. Beach Mama June 23, 2011 at 11:49 am #

    With 6 1/2 billion people on the planet we’re bound to duplicate ideas, yes? I can’t tell you how many times this has occurred in my life. I like your solution Shona. I also appreciate Laura’s approach.

    Great post, thanks so much!
    Beach Mama recently posted..Stars of the Sea

  7. Dan June 23, 2011 at 1:17 pm #

    I started blogging a few years ago, knew even less than I know about it now! Had to scrap the project because I found the topic to limited. The bitch of it was, I wrote the eBook first, took me 10 months. Damn. Anyway, I regrouped. Along the way I changed a few things. Changed topic, changed URL’s, changed host, changed philosophy, well, you get the idea. I changed. Now, I see that I’m part of a larger niche. I fit, getting my voice together and taking note of the great work I’ve found. Bottom line, after a few years I feel integrated finally. Here’s hoping it all works out moving forward. Nice post! Good luck!
    Dan recently posted..Benefits of Positive Thinking

  8. Shona - The Blithe Effect June 23, 2011 at 3:47 pm #

    Hi Beach Mama,
    Thanks for your comments (so true about the probability of duplicating) and I’m happy you liked the post :) Thanks again. Shona.

    And Dan, I can’t imagine how I would have felt if I had already written an ebook as well!!! Sounds like you brushed yourself off though, like the rest of us. Good luck to you too.
    Thanks,
    Shona.
    Shona – The Blithe Effect recently posted..How To Act Like a Big Kid and Why You Should

  9. Patti Foy | Lightspirited Being June 24, 2011 at 12:56 pm #

    Hi Shona,

    Really great post. I love your spirit! It comes through your lively writing, and it seems to be half the message in itself.

    Love your “new” website too. Glad you got back on that horse, or bike, or whatever. You’ve got a lot of “blithe” to share, and your special flavor of it does seem to shine off the pages! Good move!

    Thanks for sharing.
    Patti Foy | Lightspirited Being recently posted..For a Burst of Energy: Finish What You Started

  10. Shona - The Blithe Effect June 24, 2011 at 4:06 pm #

    Thank you so much Patti for your kind encouraging words!! I’ve seen you around the forums at A-List and you are always so gracious and lovely to people. I look forward to getting to know you better.
    Shona.
    Shona – The Blithe Effect recently posted..How To Act Like a Big Kid and Why You Should

  11. Bettie J. Brown June 26, 2011 at 9:01 pm #

    Hi Shona…Thanks for the tips you have shared to me…It is really hard to recover from frustration because I have already experienced that…But I didn’t stop because of that…I still have to continue life and achieve my goals…
    Bettie J. Brown recently posted..Training Golden Retriever Puppies

  12. Shona - The Blithe Effect June 26, 2011 at 9:56 pm #

    What a great attitude Bettie! Thanks very much for your comment.
    S. xx
    Shona – The Blithe Effect recently posted..Want happiness…get some self lovin’ and respect – Part 2.

  13. Regine June 28, 2011 at 3:41 pm #

    you’re right bettie better to speak with you mind and had comfortable doing your work copy cot is not really good.i like the new web site i started to follow i read it before i start my work it is good in starting you day it very much encouraging for me..thanks for sharing you thoughts…
    Regine recently posted..You and Your First Job

  14. Shona - The Blithe Effect June 28, 2011 at 5:18 pm #

    Thanks Regine, I’m very happy you are finding the blog encouraging. That is always one of my goals when I’m writing.
    Great to meet you.
    Shona. xx
    Shona – The Blithe Effect recently posted..Want happiness…get some self lovin’ and respect – Part 2.

  15. J.D. Meier July 1, 2011 at 11:24 am #

    > better get yourself where you wanna be
    Pithy words of wisdom that serve us well.
    J.D. Meier recently posted..Greatness at Your Fingertips

  16. Shona - The Blithe Effect July 2, 2011 at 12:37 am #

    Thanks J.D., I love those words too. Their truth is undeniable.
    Shona. xx
    Shona – The Blithe Effect recently posted..What Are Your Family’s Values?

  17. Matt R July 2, 2011 at 1:10 am #

    Complaining does nothing. Action is what gets things done. Being reborn with a new blog idea is a great story.
    Matt R recently posted..My Painful Secret

  18. ryder July 2, 2011 at 9:03 am #

    There is always alternative..and I am glad you have found yours and now you are displaying your uniqueness through your blithe..
    ryder recently posted..Christian Dating Sites

  19. Shona - The Blithe Effect July 2, 2011 at 7:32 pm #

    Hi Matt,
    It is true that complaining keeps you stuck. Action is definitely the way forward.
    Thanks for commenting,
    Shona. xx

    Hi Ryder,
    Thanks for your encouraging word. They are very appreciated!
    Shona. xx
    Shona – The Blithe Effect recently posted..What Are Your Family’s Values?

  20. chloe July 3, 2011 at 12:49 am #

    Thanks for sharing this one. I totally love it. I have just started blogging and i really enjoy it though i must admit that i badly need improvement. Blogging may sound easy but it somehow complicated too.
    chloe recently posted..FIRST DATE TIPS

  21. Marci | Liberating Choices July 3, 2011 at 7:03 pm #

    Shona, Great opening story of sharing your disappointment and struggle. My biggest hurdle/pet peeve is wasting time. And, I get very very grumpy. I have to find a way to reframe my “wasted time” to a learning experience, or I won’t let it go. I have to find something positive in going down a path that leads me nowhere. Thank you again for sharing your journey and welcome back!
    Marci | Liberating Choices recently posted..Capture the Firework Within You

  22. Shona - The Blithe Effect July 3, 2011 at 11:43 pm #

    Hi Chloe,
    Thanks for your comment and hey, I wish you absolute success with your blog!!
    Shona. xx

    Hi Marci,
    I know exactly what you mean. Somehow if you have learnt something through the process, it doesn’t feel quite so bad, does it?
    Thanks for your warm wishes.
    Shona. xx
    Shona – The Blithe Effect recently posted..The Complete Self Lovin’ Checklist – Part 3.

  23. Cristian Balau July 28, 2011 at 11:47 am #

    When I first read the title I thought this was a post about how you should never abandon a project but web project are not like that, sometimes you need to start again, from scratch, doing exact the same thing you did last time and even better. Failed projects will teach you some really valuable lessons you will never learn otherwise.

  24. adrianamarilena August 8, 2011 at 1:22 pm #

    that’s true! show them what you’ve got and what you’re capable of! great post! you keep us inspired and motivated.
    adrianamarilena recently posted..play angry birds

  25. anneboleyn007 August 8, 2011 at 1:30 pm #

    i admire how you shared your struggles and how you got up and moved on from it. this is a nice post! be inspired! be motivated! be awesome! :)
    anneboleyn007 recently posted..– First Date Tips

  26. kathycenti August 8, 2011 at 1:36 pm #

    This is a great post Shona. It’s always nice to learn from our downfalls. You gotta know where you went wrong so you’ll know what to do the next time around.Keep your spirit up and be inspired indeed! Thanks for posting this…it’s a good reminder of a lot of things.
    kathycenti recently posted..A Voice Within

  27. Gareth August 17, 2011 at 7:53 am #

    Thanks for the great post, it just goes to show that we are all fallible even great bloggers like yourself. Just gotta get my blog moving in the right direction, just not sure what direction that should actually be :}
    Gareth recently posted..Motivation: My peculiar and fickle friend

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