It’s been about 3 years since I started blogging. In the beginning I wasn’t sure of the value. I had already done a lot of writing here on SSC, answered my share of forum posts, and done a lot of writing as part of my daily work at various employers. It seemed more like a ‘check the box’ task, but for all that I wanted to give it a serious try while trying to find the value. Three years later I’m sold on the value.
I define blogging as taking an idea – a single sentence – and explaining it. You can fuss over which ideas you write about, but the act of blogging is really the art of writing, of communicating. There is real value in learning that, trying to get really good and really comfortable at it, because if you want to be successful, you have to learn to share your ideas well. Not just the ‘let’s do it’, but why and how and when. Explain it in two sentences and it gets ignored, explain in ten pages and it gets ignored. It takes practice, and most of us get relatively little practice – unless we blog, or find another way to force ourselves to write more often.
Writing makes you think, assuming you choose to write about more than where you’re going for lunch. I’ll tell you that I’d blog even if no one read my posts, it’s become the way that I shape and organize my thoughts and document lessons I’ve learned the hard way. Along the way I’ve gotten better (or at least faster) at organizing thoughts and trying to say something interesting in three or four hundred words. That’s turned out to be more useful than I ever expected, and any brand building is just a nice extra that comes with it.
That’s the value for me. My hope is to encourage you to think about it, to see it as more than the flavor of the month, and to maybe give it a try.