Blogging

Six Months of Blogging: My Honest Experience

Original photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Happy 6-month blogiversary to me!

Six months ago on January 1st, this little blog officially launched1—hooray! And what better way to mark a blogiversary than by writing a blog update post? 

I’ve read plenty of blog updates over the years. And the ones I’ve enjoyed and appreciated most were the detailed, candid ones. These bloggers openly revealed their stats, earnings, highlights, and (most meaningful to me) challenges. 

My goal for this post is to do the same. I’ll reveal the good, the bad, and all the numbers. There’s a lot to cover, so let’s dive in!

Part 1: What went well

Here’s what went well in my first six months of blogging:

I survived the six-month blogger cliff

Photo by Valderamas D on Pexels

It’s been said that 90% of new bloggers fizzle out by the six-month mark. In my early months of blogging, I thought, “That can’t be true!” I woke up every day excited to blog—how could anyone want to quit?!

Well, now that I’m on the other side of six months, I totally get it. Blogging requires a lot of time and effort. Progress is slow, and there are so many other amazing bloggers out there. (It’s really hard not to compare.)

It’s not surprising that so many bloggers decide to pull the plug. In fact, I considered it myself (more on this later). Thankfully, I managed to pull through the slump, and my blog survived to celebrate its six-month blogiversary. Phew!

This is just a small milestone to be sure, but it’s something. And when your blog’s still tiny like mine, every.little.something matters! I’m more committed than ever to keep this blog going, and I can’t wait to see where the next six months’ll lead me. 

I made new friends

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Blogging has brought so many new friends into my life… and I’ve never been more energized! (As an introvert with a preference for a few close friends, that’s very unlike me.) 

It’s been amazing connecting with my new blogging friends—both online and off. They’ve helped me learn and grow so much in both my blogging and FI journeys. If these relationships were the only thing that came from my six months of blogging, I’d say it was well worth it!

I launched a podcast

The aforementioned friends were what led me to my latest project: launching a podcast. We’ve named it Explore FI Canada, and our goal is to ‘explore FI’ in Canada at a regional level. 

The podcast is a joint project with Money Mechanic at FI Garage and Ryan at Canadian FIRE. I consider both these guys to be friends, so it’s awesome that we get to work together on this. 

You can find us at exploreficanada.ca and on all the major podcasting directories. We hope you’ll check out the show and help us get off to a strong start by sharing, subscribing, and reviewing!

To learn more about the story behind Explore FI Canada, read I Started a Podcast!

I met my goals (mostly)

Photo by Glen Carsten Peters on Unsplash

In my very first post, I outlined a list of goals for my blog:

Quality before quantity

I felt that writing a new post weekly(ish) would allow me to produce quality content—even if it meant posting less often than what the gurus recommend. I feel I met the quality goal, even if my posts weren’t always perfect. And I definitely met the weekly(ish) goal. In fact, I over-delivered on that with 34 posts over the last 26 weeks!

Balancing my perfectionism

I’ve worked very hard at balancing my perfectionism. That is, I use it to push myself to make my blog the most useful, helpful resource I can. But I also allow myself to hit ‘Publish’ and move on when my posts are good enough. My blog is in no way perfect, but every week I keep hitting publish—so I think I’ve done a decent job of meeting the goal of balancing my perfectionism.

Fitting the blog around my life

Time with family is a major core value for me, so the plan from day one was to fit the blog around my life—not the other way around. As a result, I limit the bulk of my blogging activities to when my kids are at school. 

That means I do almost no blogging on weekends and vacations, and just a tiny bit in the evening. (Except for a stressful period when I broke my own rules—read more below.) 

So far, I feel I’m meeting this goal. While limiting the hours I spend on my blog means hindering its growth, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Getting enough sleep

This was another huge goal for me, but I admittedly didn’t do very well here. I sacrificed sleep a number of times to work on this blog and the new podcast—and I paid for it. I’ll talk more about this in the next section.

Part 2: What didn’t go so well

Unfortunately, blogging isn’t all rainbows and unicorns! Here’s what didn’t go so well for me:

The technical stuff was overwhelming

Photo by energipic.com on Pexels

I’ve a relatively tech-savvy person, so I figured it’d be easy-peasy to start a blog. Ummm—WRONG! OMG is it ever hard. Another blogger said learning to blog should be a university-level course, and I agree! I slowly overcame the technical issues, but man was it tough to get here!

I’m still really slow at writing

Photo by Kaitlyn Baker on Unsplash

I was hoping I’d be faster at writing by now, but nope! I’m still really slow )mostly due to my perfectionism). I don’t know how some of my favourite bloggers (like Angela and GYM) manage to write several high-quality posts each week. AND they also work outside the home! I bow down to these ladies.

I got kicked out of Amazon.ca Associates 😭

Waaah, this was heartbreaking! And it was extra bad because some of you lovely readers were kind enough to order through my links. (I even had enough orders to qualify for the store!) But I made some small mistakes in my wording and violated Amazon’s operating policy. So they kicked me out. Oh well, lesson learned. I’ll just have to start over. 🙁

(Thankfully, I managed to qualify for Amazon.com Associates, so that made me feel a little bit better.)

The 5-month slump

Photo by Free Photos on Pixabay

This was the biggest thing that didn’t go well, and I nearly quit blogging because of it. 

Around the five-month mark, I had a few weeks of severe self-doubt and imposter syndrome. All I could focus on was what other successful bloggers were accomplishing. Sure, it wasn’t a fair comparison since all of them started long before me. But I chose to ignore that.

I just kept thinking, “What’s the point? I’m just another FI blog in the sea of FI blogs. And all these other bloggers are kicking my butt!” Even though I have amazing readers, engaging comments, and was seeing growth across all my metrics, I chose to overlook those things.

My anxiety spiked and I felt worse than I’d felt in years. I seriously considered quitting my blog or taking a break. Thankfully, it didn’t take long for me to connect the dots… 

I was feeling this way because I broke two of my cardinal rules: meditate daily and get 7+ hours of sleep per night. For years, these habits were ingrained in my life, but I’d carelessly let them slide. I was staying up way too late and had quit meditating just to get ‘one more thing’ done on the blog or podcast.

I immediately got tough with myself and put my previously-good habits back in place. Slowly, the anxiety and negative self-talk faded. And as that happened, my happiness and confidence returned. I’m now back to 100% me, and am excited to keep plugging away at this blogging thing.

And if any of you catch me losing sleep over my blog again, feel free to give me a big ol’ smack!

Part 3: The stats

Photo by Lalmch on Pixabay

I’ve mentioned before that I’m not comfortable revealing our net worth. BUT I’m more than happy to share all the numbers for my blog! In this section, I’ll detail eight of the blog metrics that I track:

Metric 1: Email subscribers

My list is still really small, but I’m grateful for each and every subscriber! Here’s how my subscriber list has grown:

  • January 2019: 3
  • February 2019: 19 (+533%)
  • March 2019: 33 (+74%)
  • April 2019: 47 (+42%)
  • May 2019: 50 (+6%)
  • June 2019: 71 (+42%)

Metric 2: Month-to-month pageviews

My traffic levels aren’t all that high, but I’m happy with where they’re at (given that I only post about once per week):

  • January 2019: 2,482
  • February 2019: 7,406 (+199%)
  • March 2019: 2,961 (-60%)
  • April 2019: 3,255 (+10%)
  • May 2019: 3,577 (+10%)
  • June 2019: 3,011 (-16%)

My commentary

In February, I experienced ‘The Rockstar Effect’—a huge spike in traffic from being featured on Rockstar Finance. (That was pretty unreal for me, given how new I was to blogging at the time.)

In March, I pre-posted a month’s worth of posts to cover my absence while we were away in Korea. I was worried that blog traffic would drop to nothing, but somehow the blog did okay!

In June there was a decrease in pageviews. My best guesses for the reasons behind the drop: one article was Canadian-focused (fewer US readers) and blog traffic generally slows in the summer.

Metric 3: Total pageviews

I don’t know if this is useful, but I’ve seen this metric on other blog reports:

  • January–June 2019: 22,267

Metric 4: Month-to-month users

These numbers are a lot lower than my page views. I think this means my readers come back often and/or visit more than one page per session. So I guess it’s a good thing!

  • January 2019: 802
  • February 2019: 3,449 (+330%)
  • March 2019: 1,028 (-30%)
  • April 2019: 1,049 (+2%)
  • May 2019: 943 (-10%)
  • June 2019: 856 (-9%)

Metric 5: Total users

I also don’t know if this is useful, but I’ve seen this metric on other blog reports:

  • January–June 2019: 7,291

Metric 6: Traffic sources

Note that the numbers below reflect users, not pageviews:

  • Referral: 2,673
  • Direct: 2,489
  • Social: 1,835
    • Twitter: 896
    • Facebook: 895
    • Instagram: 21
    • Pinterest: 1
    • Other: 33
  • Organic search: 315 

Here are my thoughts on each traffic source:

Referrals

Referrals are my biggest source of users. Most of it was from being featured on The Financial Diet and Rockstar Finance. (Thanks ESI Money—you’ve played a huge role in those features.) 

Other large chunks came from guest posts I wrote for more established bloggers. (Huge thanks to Million Dollar JourneyFreedom 101, and Chronicles of a Father With Sense for the guest posting opportunities!) 

I also saw nice bumps in traffic from mentions in other bloggers’ roundup posts. (Thank you Tread Lightly Retire EarlyMy Own Advisor, and Gen Y Money!)

Direct traffic

Direct traffic is tricky to analyze. Apparently, it comes from a variety of hard-to-track sources (mobile apps, messaging apps, directly typing in the URL, etc.) I’ve learned that UTM tags can help categorize some of this. But I’ve yet to find the time to implement them. Hopefully I’ll be able to tackle this in the near future.

Social

I know we shouldn’t rely on social networks for traffic, but it’s a good way for new bloggers to gain some momentum. Twitter and Facebook are my biggest sources of social traffic because I spend a lot of time on those platforms! 

I love sharing and conversing with other bloggers on Twitter and I’m in several FI and blogging Facebook groups. The Eat Sleep Breathe FI Facebook page doesn’t have a huge following yet, so I’m pretty sure most of my Facebook traffic comes from the sharing threads in the groups I’m in. 

Notably, my Pinterest traffic is non-existent. That’s because I’ve put zero effort into it! But it’s not due to lack of desire—it’s all due to lack of time. I hope that in the next six months, I’ll have the opportunity to start dabbling in Pinterest.

Organic search

I could do better with my SEO, but it’s not a priority right now—again due to lack of time. But I do follow best practices that are easy to implement, like following recommendations from the Yoast plugin. (My Yoast dashboard shows mostly green lights—woo hoo!) 

Metric 7: Audience location

Amazingly, my readers came from 100 countries around the world! How cool and mind-blowing is that? Here’s the breakdown:

  • United States: 56%
  • Canada: 29%
  • UK: 2%
  • Australia: 2%
  • Other: 11%

If I subtract the abnormal bump in traffic from the Rockstar Finance feature, my traffic looks more like this:

  • United States: 49%
  • Canada: 39%
  • UK: 2%
  • Australia: 1%
  • Other: 9%

Metric 8: Twitter followers

I don’t know if Twitter followers are meaningful to track, but I do it anyway just for fun:

  • February 2019: 832
  • March 2019: 891 (+7%)
  • April 2019: 915 (+3%)
  • May 2019: 1,013 (+11%)
  • June 2019: 1,050 (+4%)

My commentary

Unfortunately, I only have data from February, when I started tracking my followers manually. (I don’t know of a free way to look up long-term historical Twitter data. If there is, please let me know!)  

I should also mention: I did not build up to 832 followers between January and February! I actually started my Twitter account in May 2018, long before I launched.2 

Part 4: The income

Image by rawpixel

I saved the juiciest for last! This is what everyone wants to know… right? Well, don’t get too excited—there’s not much to report here!

However, even though I earned almost nothing in six months of blogging, I’m still sharing my numbers. Why? Well, I like knowing what other bloggers earn and how they earned their income. It’s interesting, educational, and satiates my curiosity. 

And really—who doesn’t like a peek behind the curtain? With that, I present: 

The first-ever ESBFI blog income report 

  • Google Adsense: $52.92 ($40.09 USD)
  • Amazon.com Associates: $4.26 ($3.23 USD)
  • Amazon.ca Associates: $3.00 ($2.27 USD)
  • Other affiliate commissions: $0
  • GRAND TOTAL: $60.18 ($45.59 USD)

Wow—I think I earned maybe $0.001 per hour (and that doesn’t even factor in my expenses!) Well, I think the myth that FI bloggers reach FI by blogging is very much shattered.

Why I monetize

You’re probably wondering why I bother to monetize if it earns me almost nothing. Good question! To answer this and to further explain how and why I monetize this blog, I wrote this Monetization Manifesto

In a nutshell: my main priority for ESBFI isn’t to earn money—it’s to help and connect with others. BUT any money I earn gives me an extra bit of motivation to keep going and helping more readers. (And makes it a little less horrifying when I think of the hours I pour into this blog!) 

Part 5: Closing thoughts

Thought bubble image by rawpixel; Watercolour texture created by kjpargeter—freepik.com

1. Blogging is a long game

I can understand why so many bloggers burn out in their first year of blogging. It’s a long, slow climb to ‘success’. And it’s not easy determining what ‘success’ looks like. All this can make blogging feel like an unrewarding slog. 

If you focus on the long game and blog because you genuinely enjoy it, it’ll be much easier to push through the hard times. To sum this up, I’ll share a quote from Paula Pant (she was so kind and actually replied to an email I sent her):

“Keep working at it. I’ve been blogging since 2011, and honestly, I think a huge piece of my reach and success has been that combination of longevity + quality. If you persist long enough, your platform and skills and comfort will grow. :)”

2. Blogging isn’t about the money

Blogging is a really hard way to earn money. (Just look at my measly $60 in earnings for six months of blogging!) If you focus too much on the money, you’re likely to burn out even faster. 

For me, blogging is mostly about the satisfaction of helping others by sharing what I’ve learned. It’s also about the friendships and connections I’ve gained. And finally, blogging is about the many useful skills I’ve been able to add to my talent stack. 

Blogging is about so much more than money. And if you want to persist, treat the money as a happy bonus—not a requirement for blogging.

3. Blogging is still worth doing

If blogging’s so hard to do and doesn’t make me rich, is it worth it? For me, the answer is a resounding YES. For all the reasons I’ve already listed (friends, new skills, confidence, etc.) I love blogging. And I plan to keep doing it for a long time. 

Additionally, the list of topics is endless, so I can’t see myself running out of things to say. (But I wish my time was also endless so I could write everything I want to write!) I’ve also learned so much from my readers, fellow bloggers, and people in my various Facebook Groups. If not for my blog, I may have never made the effort to connect with these amazing people.

In short, my blog brings me a lot of fulfillment and joy and I can’t imagine life without it. 

I want your feedback!

Experienced bloggers: give me your words of advice and encouragement. Newer bloggers: send me your questions and tell me how I can support you. Non-bloggers: does this post make you want to start a blog or run in the opposite direction? 😱

Sharing is caring…

If you liked this article and want more content like this, please support this blog by sharing it! Not only does it help spread the FIRE, but it lets me know what content you find most useful. (Which encourages me to write more of it!) Thanks for your support!

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40 Comments

  • Reply
    Joe
    July 1, 2019 at 9:05 am

    Great job sticking with it. Blogging really is tough.
    Not sure what kind of advice I can give. Mostly, just keep blogging.
    Try to find a blogging partner so you can encourage each other.
    Good luck!

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 1, 2019 at 3:16 pm

      Hi Joe, you’re one of the more experienced and successful bloggers that I look up to. So thanks for leaving your advice. “Just keep blogging” is something that’s often repeated—which means it must work! I’ll do my best. 🙂

  • Reply
    Tawcan
    July 1, 2019 at 9:14 am

    Congrats on the first 6 months. As you outlined, it’s a tough game to be a blogger. It’s especially tough once you do it for a few years and you feel like you’ve run out of topics to write about ha!

    Stay encouraged, meet up with bloggers, and go to conferences will help.

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 1, 2019 at 3:21 pm

      Hi Bob,

      You’re also a source of inspiration to me. You never fail to put out thought-provoking content, so you’re doing a great job.

      I look forward to the Vancouver PF blogger meetup you’ve planned, and will try to make it to some conferences. I’m just having a hard time justifying the cost since my blog hasn’t even broken even yet!

      If you have suggestions for how to balance/not feel guilty about spending money on attending conferences, I’m all ears!

  • Reply
    Melody Fanslau
    July 1, 2019 at 10:23 am

    Congrats on making it over the hump! I’m hoping that I find myself over the hump in 4 months.

    I, too, couldn’t believe it when I heard most new bloggers don’t make it. Now after only 2 months in, I completely get it! I think the hardest part has been finding the balance between life, work, and blog.

    Thanks for sharing your journey. I love reading other peoples successes and failures. The failures help me realize I’m not the only one who messes things up. And the successes give me faith that I can do this too!

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 1, 2019 at 3:42 pm

      I couldn’t have said it better Melody. Blogging can easily take over every spare minute, so the struggle to balance it with life and work is real!

      I look forward to seeing how your blog progresses. Best of luck as you reach for the 6-month milestone!

  • Reply
    Money Mechanic
    July 1, 2019 at 3:59 pm

    Congrats on the Blogiversary!! Excellent stats, well done promoting. I couldn’t have met a better new blogger friend to share ideas and work with. Your written content and dedication to FI inspire me to keep up with all the ‘behind the scenes’ work that comes with a blog and podcast.

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 1, 2019 at 10:48 pm

      Aww, thanks buddy! It’s really nice having a local blogging friend who helps to keep me moving forward.

      If not for you, the podcast wouldn’t exist. So thanks for the motivation and the push to make that a reality. It’s been such a fun project and I’ve learned so much from you.

  • Reply
    GYM
    July 1, 2019 at 10:38 pm

    These are great stats for 6 months! I don’t even think I made $50 in my first 6 months (I can’t remember, I blame it on mom brain). Yes, good tips, just keep at it. If anything, it gives you a source of creative outlet and you get to learn new things, learn new skills on your blogging journey.

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 1, 2019 at 10:52 pm

      Thanks GYM. As I said to you on Twitter, you’re my blogging big sister! LOL. As with Bob @ Tawcan and Joe @ Retire by 40, you inspire and motivate me to keep going.

      Hopefully one day I’ll be half as successful as you! Thanks for the lovely comment. 🙂

  • Reply
    Kris
    July 2, 2019 at 1:13 am

    Congrats on making it to six months Chrissy!! Those are some great stats for six months of blogging. Just keep at it and keep on getting inspired by others and more importantly keep yourself motivated. And I saw the news of your podcast launching this is will definitely keep you pushing yourself!! Congrats on that as well, I will give it a listen soon!!
    For me, I didn’t think I would make it to six months when I first started and now I’m closing in two years of blogging. At first, I thought I would run out of ideas of what to write. But with creating ideas from what’s going in my life and from other bloggers, I just kept getting new topics to write about and I still have the same motivation to keep doing it today because you always learn something new every day about yourself.
    Always stay encouraged, get motivated and you’ll keep at it!!

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 4, 2019 at 8:59 pm

      You’re always so positive and helpful Kris. That’s why I love your blog and enjoy following your story so much!

      You’ve offered some insightful, encouraging advice. Your comment will be helpful to look back on the next time I hit a challenging patch. Thank you my friend!

  • Reply
    Amelia
    July 2, 2019 at 6:09 am

    Thanks so much for sharing this. It’s really helpful and timely for me. I’m about to start blogging myself and I appreciate your candidness. This post was very educational and fun to read. I enjoy your writing style. Keep up the great work and congrats on 6 months!!

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 4, 2019 at 9:00 pm

      Comments like this make all the hard work and effort worth it. Thanks for taking the time to leave your feedback Amelia!

  • Reply
    Savvy History
    July 2, 2019 at 9:27 am

    This is such an excellent and honest reflection of your first six months. I really appreciate your honesty and I personally think you are crushing it (especially for only 6 months in). Like you, I try to balance “perfectionism” with getting things out into the world and moving on. It is a constant struggle as you said. I write so slow and sometimes I don’t even pay attention to the larger picture (like what I am aiming for value-wise or what should be the metrics for success). In fact, I’m so afraid of being discouraged, I didn’t even look at my metrics while recently writing my 6-month reflection (lol)! I hope you stay balanced making time for yourself and I wish you the best as you add in the podcast. Can’t wait to check it out!

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 4, 2019 at 9:10 pm

      I’m so lucky to have amazing bloggers like you to be on this blogging journey with.

      I’ve so loved following your story and the unique content you share on your blog. You should be proud of what you’ve created—whatever your metrics might reveal!

      Thanks so much for commenting. I’ve been silent on other blogs recently, but know that I’ve been been reading all your excellent posts! I’ll be getting back to commenting on other blogs, including yours, very soon.

  • Reply
    Angela @ Tread Lightly Retire Early
    July 2, 2019 at 6:29 pm

    To be honest, I was a bit shocked when you posted this one. Because I couldn’t believe you’ve ONLY been blogging for six months. Your blog is so well done for being so new. Well done. And so glad I could be a little part of that traffic bump on a Wednesday 🙂

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 4, 2019 at 9:53 pm

      Angela, I’ve watched you become a blogging superstar in the last year that I’ve been following you. You’re such an inspiration to me and so many women. 🤩

      Your lovely comment means so much to me! Thank you for coming by to comment and for all your support and kindness.

  • Reply
    Emil
    July 2, 2019 at 10:11 pm

    Good writing and useful.
    I would like to learn from you.
    I have started for a 1 month and a half so, I am new on this chapter of my life.
    You are right. Blogging is demanding, stressful and entertaining because I have to keep up with others.
    So, I am curious if I will reach 6 months.

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 4, 2019 at 9:58 pm

      You seem to have a realistic view of blogging Emil, and that’s a good thing! Just keep going and you’ll eventually find your rhythm and develop your audience and voice.

      Feel free to message me if you need help. I’m no expert, but I’m happy to do what I can.

  • Reply
    Radical FIRE
    July 3, 2019 at 1:42 am

    Great first 6 months on the blog – I enjoy reading your blog and you’re doing an amazing job! I love that you keep striving for more with things like the podcast, while you’re actively balancing life at the same time. I admire that!

    Keep doing what you’re doing and I’m excited for more to read & listen to from you!

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 4, 2019 at 10:05 pm

      Hi M! Thanks for the encouragement and kind words. You’re another blogger that I just can’t keep up with! I’m so impressed that you post 3x per week with thoughtful, useful content.

      Maybe you can teach me how to write faster. 😉

  • Reply
    Shaidah
    July 3, 2019 at 7:51 am

    I love your blog and appreciate the time you put into sharing what you know. Thank you! Keep up the good work!

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 4, 2019 at 10:06 pm

      Thank you my lovely, ever-supportive friend! Your comment made me smile. 🥰

  • Reply
    Melani Bejder
    July 4, 2019 at 5:14 pm

    This was a great article that really made me understand what the barrier to entry is for blogging; and it obviously isn’t startup costs; but rather the cost of time and self motivation when the feedback loop is taking time to ramp up. But I have to say I am not totally put off. I love that you built a sense of community with it. It allows you to say so much more than a Facebook post. And to people who get your ideas which is amazing! Keep up the great job

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 4, 2019 at 10:11 pm

      Melanie, that’s such an insightful thought—that the barrier to entry is the cost of time and self motivation.

      This is so true. When you pour your heart and soul into something, and aren’t getting clear signals that any of it matters or is getting through—that’s probably what does most new bloggers in.

      I’m glad to hear you’re not totally put off! Do let me know if you ever decide to launch a blog. 🙂

  • Reply
    Jaimee Grante
    July 5, 2019 at 9:17 am

    This is a great post especially for someone that is starting out like me! Thank you for being so honest and motivating me to go for it, I haven’t launch yet as I am still figuring out tech stuff (harder than I thought like you say here) but I am heading in the right direction..a bit slow but I should be launching later this month 🙂

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 7, 2019 at 10:22 am

      I’m so excited for your launch Jaimee! Let me know anytime if you need help.

  • Reply
    Latestarterfire
    July 5, 2019 at 2:29 pm

    Congratulations , Chrissy! You have done amazingly well for only 6 months plus starting a podcast as well!

    My biggest struggle is finding enough time – not just to write but to connect with others as well and fighting impostor syndrome.

    Thank you for supporting me in my efforts too! Can’t tell you how much I appreciate it 🙂

    Keep going – we need quality content like yours! Looking forward to reading your one year stats and beyond 🙂

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 7, 2019 at 10:25 am

      It sounds like we’ve had similar experiences with blogging. Like you, my biggest struggle (especially over the summer when my kids are out if school) is finding the time to blog.

      I love your blog and think your unique story, being a later starter, is so inspirational. Let’s keep blogging together!

  • Reply
    Teresa
    July 5, 2019 at 2:56 pm

    I had no idea you went through a bad spell even though I see you so often. As your MIL, I have been following your blog right from the start and even though I am retired, I find I am learning and enjoying it. I wish I had someone like you to follow when I was in my 30’s & 40’s so that I could have reached retirement sooner than 68! Nevertheless, it was through you teaching me about listening to those money management podcasts, how to invest, how to manage my budget through using YNAB, that I was able to feel comfortable to retire! Thank you for sharing all your knowledge with so many people and also me! You are the best! I have listened to your first 3 podcasts and I am your greatest fan!

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 7, 2019 at 10:32 am

      I’m so lucky to have you as a second mom. You’ve taught me just as much, if not more, just by being such a wonderful role model.

      Even though you retired at a traditional age, you’ve always lived a happy, full life. You’ve taught us that every day can and should be lived, enjoyed and appreciated—whether you’re retired or not.

      And that’s even more important than reaching FI at a young age!

  • Reply
    Carol Chandran
    July 18, 2019 at 11:41 am

    Hi Chrissy,
    Huge congratulations on your milestone! I’m so glad to have found you and your blog. I read what you wrote about why bother writing a FI blog when there are so many out there, but I think it’s important to have a range of voices to allow for more people to resonate with individual voices. Like, feeling a connection with actual people, as opposed to information in an article. It’s especially important for a process like FI, which takes years, and is easier and nicer with company along the way.

    May I ask how you overcame the tech aspects of starting a blog? I wrote on a lifestyle blog for years but we hired out the tech aspects. I’m not sure I want to do that again (it wasn’t the best experience) but having tried to set one up on my own, I’m not at all confident I can do it well… If you have any words of wisdom having been at this stage, I would be grateful!

    Looking forward to reading more,
    Carol

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      July 18, 2019 at 9:07 pm

      Hi Carol,

      The tech aspects can be overwhelming when first starting out, but it’s nothing that Google can’t help you overcome! Did you use WordPress when you last blogged? I find it very easy to use. Also, it’s so popular that there are lots of resources out there if you ever get stuck on something.

      Another huge help for me was that I paid for a premium theme (it was only $29 US because I caught a sale they were having). My theme is Redwood from Solo Pine and I cannot say enough great things about them. The theme purchase included free support for 6 months, and they were SO helpful. I sent what felt like a billion support tickets to them, and each and every time they were quick to reply, and so friendly and patient with me.

      They were so good to me that I opted to extend the support when it ended (worth every penny). I think I learned an online course’s-worth of CSS coding and theme customization just from Solo Pine’s support!

      So… my two tips are to use Google when you get stuck, and buy a premium theme that includes support. Those two things will help you get over the initial tech hump. After that, it’s mostly smooth sailing!

      (You can also ask me for help. I’m not an expert, but I’m happy to do what I can.)

  • Reply
    Andrew
    August 7, 2019 at 2:04 pm

    Hey first time commenting here! (Belated) Congratulations reaching that milestone – now you’re almost halfway through Q3.

    I promise that you’ll get faster at writing at some point! I found that I took more time researching early on, and that really took up much of my time. Eventually, all the little things you have to do to prepare take less time.

    You may do this already, but I recommend outlining the whole article first and entering little excerpts on what you want to write about in each section. Then you can move through the article, complete your ideas, refine them, and add details in whatever order you see fit.

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      August 9, 2019 at 9:54 pm

      Hi Andrew—thanks for the encouragement. Your tip to write the outline first, then enter little excerpts is an excellent suggestion. It’s a very effective technique, and I know it works.

      Yet for some reason, I often forget to do it! Your comment is a good reminder to be more intentional when starting my articles. It would definitely save me time. I’ll keep working at it. 😉

      Thank you for taking the time to comment—I love hearing from my readers!

  • Reply
    Erik @10YearTarget
    October 3, 2019 at 2:05 pm

    Great blog post and an interesting read. I am a few months behind you (started in June) and I can recognize some of your experiences. And also your metrics looks kind of similar to mine.

    Keep up the good work.

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      October 3, 2019 at 9:24 pm

      Hi Erik, it’s always nice to hear from other bloggers who are at a similar place. I find it’s more helpful and inspiring than when it comes from a much more established blogger.

      Thanks for coming by and commenting! I hope you’ll write a six-month update post yourself. I’d love to read it when you do. 🙂

  • Reply
    Charlie
    October 3, 2019 at 2:16 pm

    Wow I absolutely love how you turned the stats into graphs and charts (I love numbers lol)! Thanks for sharing all this in detail. (:

    • Reply
      Chrissy
      October 3, 2019 at 9:26 pm

      Thanks for your comment Charlie. Ha ha, the graphs and charts were actually really fun to make in Canva. Even though I’m a graphic designer with access to the Adobe suite, I found Canva so quick and easy to use!

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