I Love Blogging…Really I Do

In my whole 27 years if I’ve learned one thing it’s this, no matter how much you love something some days you just don’t like it. Think about it, no matter how much you love your significant other, best friend, sister, whoever sometimes you just want to slap them and tell them to leave you alone for an hour (or six).
This is how I’ve been feeling about a lot of things lately, blogging being one of them. I’ve just need a bit of a relationship vacation from my blog, a break OR to mix it up.

Friends We were on a break

Gif from Giphy

I feel like I’ve gotten in this churn and burn routine that is just stressing me out and making me more annoyed and (I’ll say it) more sensitive to certain comments. I am by nature a sensitive person, always have been probably always will be. I’m not as sensitive as I was as a child life has taken care of a lot of that but lately, I’ve been just feeling so emotionally drained that even the slightest hint of negativity, condescension or rudeness in a comment on one of my posts, and I just feel beat up.
I know as someone putting their thoughts and feelings on display for the whole world to read and dissect, I need to tough skin to an extent. For the most part this hasn’t been that hard for me but lately, I have just been feeling emotionally weak. I won’t go into the details of my personal life and what’s been keeping me up at night/ dominating all my emotional energy.

What works most of the time might not work all of the time.

For a while now I’ve had a pretty good system on my blog (or at least one I feel comfortable with). I’ve been publishing twice a week on Monday and Thursday. Monday a piece about blogging/business and Thursday and a fun piece about whatever I fancy.
Maybe because I spent the first part of July either out of town and celebrating my birthday I went two weeks barely opening my laptop and if we’re being honest it was pretty nice. But of course, when Monday of last week came my piece was not ready to post but I managed to wrap it up after work but I made a pretty conscious decision that there wouldn’t be a Thursday post. I just couldn’t bring myself to write or publish when my heart wasn’t into it.
Ironically writing this feels pretty therapeutic considering how unattractive my laptop has been to me lately. Untill now it just isn’t where my head has been at. Truth be told I doubt a single reader will notice the change in my posting frequency and I’m not writing this to say, “Forgive me for posting less,” or “Let me explain myself….”  I am writing it to say if you feel this way and want to take a break or change things up you aren’t alone and we are okay. It’s okay!

Stepping Back to Refocus

As I said I have a lot going on so I’m made a decision based on that and something my friend Lauren at L Bee and the Money Tree decided to do. I’m cutting back on blogging for the next 2 months or so. I’m only promising one blog post a week and one newsletter a month. I want to take this time to work on my personal life and work on blog/business related projects that have been put on the back burner because writing 2 full posts a week with 3 day marketing cycles, while working full-time, trying to freelance, make time for family and friends, going to the gym and going back into the dating world takes up a lot of time. I know I have wasted a lot of time lately, I’ll be straight with you I’ve spent a few Sunday afternoons wallowing or hungover. But right now I type this post sitting in Starbucks instead of taking the nap I didn’t really need and staying home.

Keep going

So if I am so uninterested right now why don’t I just stop? Why not just call it quits. Get a huge chunk of my free time back and lower my stress level? Because of the feeling I had after I pushed out the first few sentences today and then the words just took me away, because the fact that although that Mango Black Tea is seriously demanding it escapes from my bladder I just want to keep writing. Because I ended the relationship with the person who inspired me to even start it and maybe part of me needs this to be the good thing that came out of it.
So now that I have rambled on for 700+ words… for your reading pleasure.

The 5 things I remind myself when I want to give up on blogging.

  1. Why I started- Because I love writing. I always have and I think I’d miss it. Without the responsibility I gave myself of a blog I might not make time to do it anymore.
  2. That I control the delete button- I mean I am basically like the supreme ruler of the universe when it comes to the comment section of my blog. Hate gets no place!
  3. All the nice people and comments/ my intention- I write my blog for 3 reasons because I enjoy it. To provide entertainment for people. To hopefully help people. Not everyone will get that, not everyone will understand it, not everyone will appreciate it, but I do.
  4. Freebies- Yeah that’s shallow and not enough reason to keep blogging all on it’s on but damn it’s a nice perk. I haven’t bought protein powder, shampoo or conditioner in MONTHS!
  5. Safe space- This is my platform. It’s pink and black. Fun and flirty. My space.
  6. Because I can- There are places in the world where women can’t just hop online and share their thoughts and experiences. Hell, years ago a black woman in America especially wouldn’t get to really enjoy her freedom of speech.

So what keeps you going when you feel like you are done? What made you start? Have you ever cut back to take a little mental R&R? Tell me below!

The 5 Minute Task You Need to Protect Your Blog

I work hard on my blog and when I say “work” I mean work. Anyone who blogs knows how much work goes into a having a blog. I can say in the last 15 months since starting AllTheThingsIDo.com I’ve only a hand full of days where some blogging activity didn’t take place. When you dedicate so much of your time and yourself into something, of course, you want to protect all that work.
Lately, I’ve been hearing more and more reports on blogger Facebook groups and social media platforms about bloggers having their contents stolen and used by other “bloggers.”

Blogger Facebook Groups 101

Imagine the horror of someone stealing your content & putting their name on it! Click To Tweet

Can you imagine horror of some lazy person stealing the content you wrote poured your heart into and putting their name on it! Some people aren’t just changing a few words and phrases but literally copying, pasting and then posting someone else’s original content of their own website. In fact in some cases not just stealing a post or two but completely stealing every single post and graphic with the only differences being their name and maybe the name of the blog.
It is not acceptable!
You work hard on your blog so do everything you can to protect it. There is something so simple you can do to make it harder for people to take your content. I was shocked all I needed was to download the content protection plugin. All I had to do was install and activate the plugin no need for coding or copy and pasting HTML. It pretty much “click, click, done” and now my page is protected from thieves.

You work hard on your blog so do everything you can to protect it. Click To Tweet

I have a WordPress blog and us the free plugin WP Content Copy Protection & No Right Click by wp-buy to protect my content from right clicking.

These content thieves are pretty lazy (obviously) so while this doesn’t totally stop someone from retyping your content it does make it harder for them to copy and paste your content into their blog. Which may deter them from targeting you and your awesome content?


4 Tips to Build Deeper Connections With Your Social Media Followers

Other tips:

  • Trademark your images in some way. A lot of users use watermarks to protect their photos.
  • Randomly do searches for the titles and certain phrases in of your posts.
  • Remember that there are a lot of bloggers out there and there is a good chance that others have written about the same topics as you. Don’t go around accusing people of plagiarism just because you both have a post titled, “5 Tips to improve your blog.” It doesn’t mean they stole from you. Actually, read the post. If the posts closely match up then look at other posts to see if there seems to be a pattern in similar posts.

Do you protect your content or photos? How? What plugins do you use? If you don’t use WordPress share how you protect your content. Have you ever had someone steal your content? Have you ever been wrongly accused?

Update 7.12.16:

First to answer a question I’ve seen a few times. This plugin doesn’t prevent screenshot, which as we all know can be used to grab photos, so some sort of watermark is probably your best bet.

Second, I received a comment about how one reader doesn’t use a plugin like this anymore and pointing out that it does disable the ability for readers to paste links into my comments section.  I allow visitors to link their names to their URL and provide multiple ways to get in contact with me if they have a link they would like to send me specifically. Before I enabled this plugin I didn’t typically approval links in comments because most of the time it’s spammy. Also most of the bloggers I personally know use Google Chrome which automatically populates things like name, email and url in the provided spaces.

I am not claiming to know it all.

I am also not claiming this is the best way or the only way.

Like in all of my blogging posts I’m saying it’s the best way for me and sharing it with anyone who may not have heard of this option, they can do further research and see if it’s for them. As I stated above this isn’t going to totally protect your blog content from being stolen, it is just one option for safe guarding it. If someone really likes a post and wants to refer back to some of the content they can always bookmark it or save the link.

I appreciate people coming to the blog, reading, commenting and sharing but this is supposed to be a safe place. I totally agree with free speech but I pay for this domaine and while any advice I can share to make a more informed decision is welcome I don’t need anything negative when my intentions are to be helpful in anyway I can and to provide a fun, relatable and positive site.

I love you all and want us all to kick butt, so sorry if this bothers you, just had to say it.

Happy Birthday to Me! Big Moments From This Year.

So this Saturday I will be celebrating my birthday 🙂 My plan is brunch with my girlfriends, dinner with my guy than a night out at my favorite watering hole till they shut us down!

It’s crazy how fast time goes by after a certain age (and how your metabolism seems to slow down after a certain age for that matter haha).

So to celebrate my birthday I want to take a look back on some of the biggest moments of the past year, some good some bad but all things I’ll remember from this year.

So in no particular order 10 huge moments from my 26th year.

First HelloGiggles Post

I remember when I started blogging this was one of my biggest. I submitted pitch after pitch of what I was sure was killer content but received rejection after rejection. Finally, it happened, I pitched the story of when I faked an engagement on Facebook and they wanted it!

First Elite Daily Post

When Elite Daily approached me about becoming a contributor I was super excited. I was less excited when I found out they don’t pay contributors. I told my contact I wasn’t interested in doing draft after draft when I wasn’t getting paid and my work might not even be published. She said she understood and that she could still add me to the contributor list and if anything caught my eye feel free to contribute. It wasn’t until I got the article request about Stacey Dash saying that Black History Month shouldn’t exist did I feel encouraged. I furiously typed for about half an hour read over it once and then submitted it. I think it was published the same day. This kind of felt like an accomplishment because I was just standing up for the way I felt. I wasn’t trying to get clicks or traffic I was just expressing myself.

First trip to NYC and BlogHer 15

This was literally life changing! No, I didn’t fall in love with New York but I did fall in love with myself a little more. This was my first time really taking a full vacation by myself and between the trip and the conference my life is officially changed can’t wait for BlogHer 16 next month!

The Loss of My Grandmother

This was probably the hardest loss I’ve ever had. I’ve experienced loss before but nothing had ever hit me the way my grandmother’s death did. I can’t put into words how much losing the woman who helped raise me changed me but I can say I am grateful for two things. I’m grateful I had her as long as I did and I’m grateful that although her death brought so much sadness to our family it really helped me and my sister get in a good place.

Moving out of that apartment complex

In 2014 my apartment got broken into. To say the least it was a really crappy time in my life. I felt violated and scared. I still haven’t totally gotten over it. But luckily in November when my lease was over I got to move out of that complex into a new place that I love. I lived by myself for nearly 4 years before moving where I am now and I literally feel like this is my first real adult apartment.

Got out of my comfort zone

So anyone who knows me knows I’m from the country but am by far an indoors air conditioning loving city girl at heart. This 4th of July I went to my friend’s river house in the middle of nowhere and with no reception. Barbecuing and swimming and it was amazing. I really want to go back. As a blogger I’ve been pretty plugged in  24/7 and it was nice to take a few pictures then put the phone away and enjoy the awesome company.

Leakey, Texas

First time doing a meetup

After college, I feel like no matter how your career takes off you kind of find yourself in this strange social limbo, especially if you’re like me where it seems like everyone else is moving to different cities for jobs or getting married and starting  a family. You can really fall into this dull pattern. Work, home, work, home and it can be strange because the first 20+ years of your life you had hobbies or group activities to keep you busy. At the moment I can’t tell you what really kick started my desire to get on meetup but man am I glad I did. I no longer go to the class because it was just too late to keep up with on a Monday but it was just fun to go or it.

Left a job I saw no future with but was super familiar

I was at my company for 3 years and had it made in the shade. My boss treated me like I was family. I had just landed myself a huge raise and time off was pretty lenient. It was great but there was no future for me I was the Director of Marketing at 26 and had nowhere to go. So I left my comfort zone and started applying for jobs. This wasn’t all shits and giggles. The company I went to I was very unhappy and by the 2nd month saw there was no opportunity for me there as well. That what I bought wasn’t what I was sold but after 5 months I’ve found a new job that I can see myself at for a very long time.

Launched my first e-course

So this was something I drug my feet on for some time. I finally got it together thanks to my friend Brittney at BrittneyLLynn.com. Thanks for the kick in the pants, Brittney. If you’d like to sign up for the course it is still open and did I mention free!

Watching my best friend get married

My Best Friend's Wedding

This was so insane to me. I’ve seen alot friends get married over the past few years but nothing was as surreal as watching my bestie Karen pledge her to another person. I was so proud to stand next to her on that day.

So my 26th year had a lot of twists and turns but it was amazing! I feel like I’ve really grown into someone I can be proud of.

Also big shout out to my mom and sister celebrating their birthdays July 10th!

So tell me:

Are you a big birthday person?

Any birthday traditions you do with your birthdays?

What’s the best gift you’ve ever gotten?

Do you buy into zodiac signs?