My Blogging Journey: The First 6 Months

My Blogging Journey: The First Six Months appeared first on Goal Digging to Happiness! This post may contain Affiliate links but all opinions are my own.
My Blogging Journey: The First Six Months appeared first on Goal Digging to Happiness! This post may contain Affiliate links but all opinions are my own.

I posted my very first Goal Digging to Happiness post on July 27, 2015 and now it’s coming up on six months!  What started out as my accountable journey to becoming financially free, early retirement and overall happiness, just one goal at a time, provided opportunities to a whole other world of income generating opportunities and eventual work independence!

Blogging

I began blogging on Blogger, but soon purchased my own domain name and switched to a word press blog via Bluehost.  Once on WordPress, GDTH had a more professional appearance. I was able to add valuable plugins needed to grow an audience and begin building my brand.  Additionally, since I had no idea what I was doing, it felt good to be able to have backup to assist me with whatever I was having difficulty with.

Since having a wordpress blog, my page views per day have nearly doubled and are continuing to increase with hard work.  I’ve been able to build connections and market directly through the wordpress community.  Finally, Bluehost is conveniently priced and offers great support, which is a major plus since I have basic computer skills

If you’re interested in starting a blog, click my link here to get started right away!

Building an AUDIENCE

As mentioned above, once I switched over to WordPress, my page views per day nearly doubled although still not in the upper thousands.  I continue to build my audience by commenting on other blogs within my niche community as well as outside.  I build relationships with other bloggers and reach out to them for help.  In most cases, many bloggers are eager to help and will with little to know cost.  However, there are some bloggers who have become established and their time is money.  I understand this concept.

If you’re a newer blogger and need help but are on a limited budget and do not have much to offer, reach out anyway.  Shoot an email or reach out via the Contact me form.  I’m always willing to share my experiences thus far, for as little as a Twitter post share or a Facebook page like! Those small tokens go a long way.

My Blogging Journey-2

Earning income

In order to earn an income via blogging, building an audience is essential.  Right now I earn a very minimal income via Google Adsense and Media.net.  I’m also an influencer with Izea and Tap Influence.  However, my following is so little that I hardly receive gigs from them.

I also have affiliate links via Amazon and Target.  I’ve gained a little income via those affiliate links.  Most of my online income comes from freelancing.  You can check out my online income reports below:

Social Media

This is the most crucial part to blogging, building an audience, and building relationships.  Although, I hate being on social media because I feel like it takes so much of my time.  There are amazing widgets and plug in that will simultaneously post to your social media platforms.

In addition to simultaneous posting, it’s important to join Facebook groups like The Careful Cents, Blogging on your Own Terms, Social Hack and She Rocks Her Marketing to gain helpful tips from other bloggers, build relationships, network, and even market your work.  You can also find a plethora of helpful information via Pinterest.

Youtube and Google have helped out tremendously when I get stumped on something.  I can’t wait to see where blogging here at Goal Digging to Happiness continues to take me.  Thanks to all my GDTH valued readers, subscribers and Facebook and Twitter followers for being interested in my journey.

How was your first six months blogging? What did you wish you wish you knew then that you now know?  Any helpful information, tips, or tricks?

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December Goal and Budget Review

December Goal and Budget Review appeared first on Goal Digging to Happiness!
December Goal and Budget Review appeared first on Goal Digging to Happiness!

I know that it’s super late in the month to be doing a goal review but umm…better late then never right!

December was a super busy month at first then I like crashed for like 7 days where I didn’t do anything but the basics.  Literally, all I did was eat, sleep, and watch tv.  Somewhere in there I would bathe, check mail, and attend to the little ones.  I completely eliminated social media during this time and enjoyed every minute of that as well.  As a result, I’m pretty sure some of these goals fell by the wayside. Lets see.

FINANCIAL

1. Stick to my Christmas shopping list and budget.

SUCCESS-I had no choice but to maintain my budget and my shopping list, once I created it.  I had absolutely no access to go overboard which was a great thing.  And more importantly, I did not add any  additional debt on my credit cards because I’m so serious about getting out of debt.   

2. Improve my household budget.

SUCCESS-  You’ll see below how my budget improved compared to Novembers.  Actual payments were much closed to Novembers actual payments and the totals were not drastically over.  

I always get excited at the end of the year.  I go overboard with goals and plans for the following year which may be reflected in this post.  Also upon reflection and reevaluation, I realized that I did not want as many hands in my paycheck. So I worked diligently to eliminate as many hands in my paycheck as possible. 

3. Open a Christmas account for Christmas 2016

SUCCESS-I actually opened the account in December and made my first deposit this past pay period.  I hope that it continues to grow.  We’ll see.

I hated the feeling of being restricted when it came to being prepared for Christmas so I wanted to get better ahead this year.  I will continue to shop throughout the year for gifts as well to off set the cost in December.   

HEALTH

Take my vitamins daily

FAIL-I was not consistent with taking my vitamins in December but I have drastically improved and have only missed one night thus far.  

 Reach my FITBIT STEP Goal

FAIL-There were some days in one week that I reached my fit goal and then there were some weeks where I didn’t reach my step goal at all.  Now my fit bit it broken and needs a band replacement so I’m not even wearing it at all.  But I have decided to workout at least three times per week and I’m successful with that thus far. 

MENTAL

 Be content

SUCCESS-Surprisingly!  I think maintaining my Christmas list and budget, working hard and then getting a much needed break and regrouping towards the end of the year allowed me to maintain my peace.  I was well rested for my return to work and was actually excited to get back, although it did not last long. 

January 2016 goals

  • Purchase materials for the Mister to lay the floors
  • Get a builders permit
  • Pay half of my AM credit card balance- Completed
  • Earn or exceed at least $400.00 side hustle income
  • Work out at least once/week
  • Blog at least twice/ week and begin building my email subscibers
  • Save $50.00-Completed
  • Read one book-Completed
December Goal and Budget Review appeared first on Goal Digging to Happiness!
December Goal and Budget Review appeared first on Goal Digging to Happiness!

December Budget

You can refer back to November’s budget here to compare progress.

Fixed Expenses Projected Actual
Mortgage $1000.00 $1000.00
Utility $319.00 $319.00
Cell phone $60.00 $98.29
Cell phone2 $298.00 $330.00
Cable $123.00 $102.11
Car payment1 $354 $365
Car Payment 2 $414.00 $414.00
Car Insurance2 $165.00 $165.00
Life Insurance $70 $70
Total $2,813 $2,863.40

 

Other expenses Projected Actual
Groceries $300.00 $247.33
Eating out $50.00 $112.10
Clothing 0 $42.54
Transportation $160.00 $75.00
Entertainment 0 0
Credit Card (s) $394.00 $621.00
Miscellaneous 0 $222.86
Allowance $20.00 $20.00
Savings $25.00 $0
Totals $949 $1140.40

My highs

  • My major high was just being diligent, consistent, and determined to get out of debt by any mean necessary.
  • Also being aware of my miscellaneous spending amount from the previous month made me more conscience of what I purchasing and for what.
  • I was still able to pay an excessive amount of money on December’s bills and even a final payment despite the Christmas holiday.

My Lows

  • I continue to go over on my cell phone bill and really need to make the change to a lesser plan.  Maybe I’ll make that a February Goal.
  • I went over in areas that I zero’d out.
  • I still did not save anything in December despite the good money I made from my side hustle.

January I’ve continued to stay focus on eliminating debt aggressively.  I’m also doing lots of research on how to build my blog, subscribers, improve content, as well as continue to search for freelance and guest blogging opportunities.  I’m also considering other ventures but don’t want to speak as much on those as of yet.

So far how is January going?  Have you been successful on your goals thus far? Have any had to be adjusted.