Over the past several months, I’ve been working hard to grow and improve this blog through things like guest posting, networking, and providing great content. But I’ve also been working hard on improving myself. Below are 5 things I’ve been doing that not only have led to a better me but to a better blog.

Decluttering

One of my main goals for 2011 was to declutter my life by getting rid of one thing every day. I actually started a new daily blog to document my efforts and to hold myself accountable. To date I’ve gone well beyond my thing-a-day goal and have gotten rid of several hundred items. In the process, I’ve also made over $1000.

And you know what? It’s been freaking awesome. I love getting rid of stuff. It’s almost like a game; I want to see how much junk I can get rid of and how much money I can make off of it.

But it’s also been beneficial to my blogging. I’m less distracted by the clutter around me. I feel more at ease knowing that my crap isn’t taking over my life, and that feeling of ease makes it easier to focus on what I need to get done.

And speaking of things that need to get done… No, the infographics course is not ready yet.

Reading more

I’ve always loved reading and am an avid reader, but I’ve been reading even more lately. Spurred on by the decluttering purges of my library (aside from just wanting to learn about all this cool new stuff that I’ve been wanting to learn about for ages), I’ve been furiously reading lots of books so that I can get rid of them with a clear conscious.

Paul took the words right out of my mouth when he wrote his great guest post about how to never run out of things to blog about. He also talks about how reading more makes you a better writer. I agree with both of these things wholeheartedly. I won’t go into much more detail except to say that reading more hasn’t just given me ideas of things to blog about, but has also given me ideas of how to improve my blog and ideas for new products and services I could offer in the future.

Reading faster

A couple years ago I asked for a book on speed reading for Christmas. One of my wonderful sisters ended up giving me Breakthrough Rapid Reading. I’m still working my way through the book, but I have started reading faster already. It’s pretty awesome.

I spend many, many hours on my computer every day doing blogging-related stuff, and the fact that I can shave time off simply by reading faster is amazing. I can get more blogging-related stuff done or spend more time doing other things. Hah. Just kidding, I don’t do anything else except blog. << Not true. But kinda true.

Being more active

I’m generally an extremely active person. As a lot of you know, I’m an avid rock climber. Now, I live in the mountains and we get a lot of snow in the winter. Snow + rock climbing = not so fun. So I’m not as physically active in the winter as I am the rest of the year.

This winter was worse than most. I usually supplement my rock climbing deficiency with a healthy diet of ice climbing, skiing, mountain biking (in the desert a few hours away), and mountaineering. But this winter was very heavy on the blogging and much lighter on the physical exertion of any kind other than moving the mouse around or typing. Thankfully, all terrible things must come to an end and winter is slowly ebbing its way out of the Rockies. I’ve been hiking and climbing more often now and I feel SO much better, mentally and physically.

More specifically, I feel healthier, happier, more focused, and more energized. For the past several months, my efforts to focus hard on blogging have often been hijacked by the desire to get outside. Now that it’s getting warmer and less snowy, I can finally act on that. As a result, I’m able to focus better on blogging when I’m supposed to be blogging. My brain doesn’t wander nearly as much, and it doesn’t take me as long to complete the blogging tasks that I need to do.

Eating healthier

Finally, I’ve been trying to eat better. This is one of the most difficult things that I struggle with. The problem is that I *hate* spending time cooking or preparing food. Instead of spending one hour cooking food, I’d rather spend that same hour eating a pizza while watching an episode or two of one of my beloved reality TV shows.

So I don’t cook. But this means that I end up eating a ton of crap food. Crappy food + Tristan = Crappy Tristan. I’m more tired than I should be and I don’t feel like working when I’m that tired.

Over the past few months, I’ve been trying to eat better. Emphasis on the trying part. Sometimes I do really well, but other times I fail miserably. Last week, for example, I ate fast food every day. Sunday came around and I had a massive headache and a raging stomach ache. On top of that, I just felt 100% disgusting.

But other times I do quite well. This week has been one of those times. I’ve been eating more fruits and vegetables and trying to limit the horrible food when I do go out to eat. The difference is huge and definitely noticeable. Instead of wanting to curl up in a ball in the corner and cry myself to sleep, I actually feel like doing something.

In short, when I feel good and healthy I have the energy to get a lot done. Boo ya.

Final words

It comes down to this: A successful blogger needs to put his/her heart and soul into his/her blog. So if your heart and soul are healthy and happy, your blog will likewise be healthier.

  • Have you noticed a correlation between a better you and a better blog?
  • What things are you currently doing now that will lead to a better you and a better blog?
  • What would you like to do in the near future that will make you a better person and might lead to a better blog?