11 Life Skills Learned Blogging

“You can learn something every day if you pay attention.” – Ray LeBlond

Believe it or not, becoming a blogger was never something I planned. In fact, when I tell the story, I always mention Becoming Minimalist was originally started as just an online journal for our decluttering and minimizing journey.

But somewhere along the way, I began to notice the positive effect it was having on my life and others. Not only was this website becoming an inspiration to thousands (eventually millions) around the world, it was beginning to change me in positive ways I had not expected. Sure, it served its purpose of an online journal, but far more than that, the discipline of blogging was forcing me to learn new life skills – life skills that are highly transferable to other endeavors.

11 Life Skills I’ve Learned from Blogging:

1. Writing. Certainly blogging has helped refine my grammatical skills (less vs. fewer, affect vs. effect, etc.). But far more importantly, blogging has forced me to formulate arguments and communicate inspiration using the written word.

2. Risk-taking. Every time I hit “publish,” I take a risk. There is always going to be a sense of risk associated with good writing as it seeks to advance a particular ideal. But the more practice one gets in expressing their opinion, the easier the risk becomes.

3. Being Entrepreneurial. I’ve never considered myself the entrepreneurial type (one who organizes, operates, and assumes the risk for a business venture). But blogging has allowed/forced me the opportunity to do just that… and discover the excitement that comes with it.

4. Networking. Sitting at my computer when I created an account for www.becomingminimalist.com, I never dreamt it would provide such opportunity to meet and develop genuine friendships online. But as a result of networking and connecting, there are now numerous fellow bloggers around the country that I consider true friends (if they asked me for help, I’d be there… and vice-versa).

5. Selling. “Selling” may sound like an odd life skill coming from an author who routinely criticizes our modern culture of consumerism. But blogging has helped teach me the art of selling – a life skill that deserves to be on this list. Because every day of our lives, we sell. We sell our ideas, our opinions, our worldviews, and even ourselves to the people that we meet.

6. Taking criticism. Not all comments are positive. Not all reviews are positive. And not all links leading to this website are positive. In fact, some are downright mean. But humbly learning from criticism is an important life skill that I am glad to have developed from blogging. (And knowing when/how to completely disregard a negative comment is also valuable).

7. Being observant. Once a person begins writing about life and the thoughts that shape it, they begin thinking more intentionally about who they are, who they are becoming, and what factors are shaping their journey. As a result, I have learned to become far more observant to the world around me in almost every imaginable way.

8. Reading. It’s true what they say, “Writers read.”

9. Promoting others. Blogging has helped teach me the pie is not finite – there is plenty of success to go around. One man’s/woman’s success does not mean less opportunity for my own. In fact, their success can be yours if you help them get there. In short: Compete less, encourage more.

10. Promoting self. There are hundreds of millions of websites. Your blog may provide valuable information to readers. But if nobody knows it exists, it isn’t helping anybody. At some point, you are required to promote your work to others… and that requires the confidence and humility to engage in healthy self-promotion.

11. Balancing. Family, work, rest, blogging, community, exercise. Striking a healthy balance among each of them is required for long-term success in any of them.

Could I have learned these life skills elsewhere? Absolutely. But for me, it wasn’t until I started blogging that I was forced to explore, research, and develop these highly-transferable skills. And for that, I am very grateful. Becoming Minimalist has been (and continues to be) a life-changing adventure. Thanks for being part of it.

Joshua Becker

About Joshua Becker

Writer. Inspiring others to live more by owning less.
Bestselling author of Simplify & Clutterfree with Kids.

Follow on TwitterLike on Facebook

Comments

  1. says

    I’m a new blogger myself, and I’m learning a lot about commitment. I know no matter what, I am going to sit down every Sunday night and write that post!

  2. says

    Aaahhh…. could not agree. If anything, blogging helped me to sharpen my writing and, most importantly, it helped me to find my writing voice.
    Balancing is quite a challenge, I have to admit. I have not learned it yet. :)

  3. says

    Joshua – Great post, and so true! Thank you for your encouragement and help. In just this short time, I’ve realized the great responsibility and privilege it is to speak into people’s lives and affect them. I’m greatly humbled by the experience so far and I’m sure you have been too. Your tips have not fallen on deaf ears…like Aloysa noted, the balancing act is a challenge!

  4. says

    I love that you’ve learnt so much, it makes me hope for the things I’ll learn :)

    I’ve been writing for a long time but only publishing/blogging for a short time. I’m inspired by reading your work & some of my other favourite bloggers. I hope to be reading your work for years to come,x

  5. says

    My blogging has really taken off since I decided to stop trying to be someone else. We spend our lives fitting into the world, but now the world is fitting itself around me. It might sound arrogant, but it’s just about being self-possessed – put your stuff out there in an intelligent way and whether people like it or not you will learn something about yourself.

    Joshua – thanks for the thought inspiring post.

  6. says

    I also just recently started up a blog and although I enjoy it I find I have to really concentrate hard and focus in order to get out posts in a timely fashion. Thanks for the article Joshua. It’s an encouragement!

  7. says

    You and I learned alot of the same lessons!!! I started blogging in early 2010 and my key lessons have definitely been “Being Entrepreneurial” and my writing. Blogging was also my first real introduction to a large community of sorts.

  8. says

    I’m new to blogging as well, however in the past (before graduate school took over) I did a lot of writing. Part of the problem with writing as opposed to blogging is I kept my written thoughts myself for the most part. I realized that writing is great but it was going to be difficult to grow in my writing/ ideas without the input of others. I like your list, it certainly does promote lots of changes & growth in one’s life.

  9. says

    I have been blogging for over two years now, and I love it. The main thing I have learned is that, as good as it feels to be noticed, the most important thing is helping others. That is a good ‘clean’ goal I use to evaluate the quality of my posts, something solid for me to fall back on when it seems like I am writing into empty space. And it has worked great so far.

    Thanks so much, Joshua, for sharing the valuable lessons you have learned from blogging with us.

  10. says

    Just started taking blogging seriously recently and find a lot of this is so true. I’d add being authentic. Its something I struggle with constantly, ie writing from my own point of view/experience without coming off as an egocentric jerk.

  11. says

    One extra lesson we learned through blogging is that my hubz & I have complimentary skills. I supply the material & he posts, promotes, links, etc. Neither of us could do what we do without the other, & even if our blog never goes anywhere beyond our front door, we have found something we enjoy working on together, which in turn provides us with a common goal about with we are both passionate. It’s so much fun adding another dimension of partnership to our marriage.

  12. says

    Nice topic. I had not thought of many of these. I certainly started blogging as a way to expand my world, and hopefully share a little with others as well. I see now it may broaden my experience in ways I’d not even thought of.

    Thanks,

    DSG
    zenpresence.com

  13. says

    There are a nuumber of different styles of dog collars afailable on thhe market today and
    every style has it’s own unique look and feel.
    Customarily they are chosen by people as a stylish
    option for attaching a dog lead or name tags for identification.
    The electronic type iis typically being used aas a way to discourage or stop
    a pup from executing specific behaviour.

Sites That Link to this Post

  1. this went thru my mind | | May 1, 2012

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *