A Blog By Any Other Name

My early summer trip to North Carolina was memorable for a whole bunch of reasons: seven friends, free flowing wine, and a photo shoot to capture the perfect shot ahead of L, C and my triple birthday party this November. You’ll never guess how old we’re turning.

You'll also never guess how many takes it took to get this right.

You’ll also never guess how many takes it took to get this right.

But of all the lovely moments that I’ll remember about my Memorial Day trip, one in particular has stuck with me: a beach-side conversation with one friend about the changes we could make in our lives to be really, truly happy.

Now don’t get me wrong: we’re both happy. We’re both with wonderful men in exciting cities with loving families, successful careers, and — after that sun-soaked conversation — killer tans. But as good as things are, there are always steps we can take to get even closer to our dream life, and as she and I sat on the beach, we challenged each other:

What steps could you take right this instant to get closer to your definition of happy?

It was an interesting exercise, since most of my goals aren’t the kinds of things I can put into motion at the drop of a hat. Get a dog? Not unless my hours change. Summer in Maine? Not unless I inherit a large sum of money. Capture the perfect goldendoodle selfie? Not until this floozy niece of mine stops smooching everyone in sight.

Coming in for the kill.

Coming in for the kill.

As we sat there discussing our goals, one stood out that felt more within my reach: find a way to take my blog a little bit more seriously.

Now I don’t mean more seriously like fewer dog photos or Star Wars jokes.

"Oh no! Those WERE the droids we were looking for!"

“Oh no! Those WERE the droids we were looking for!”

I mean taking my blog more seriously by trying to actually get it out there. Other bloggers I know are active on twitter, go to blogger conferences, attend sponsored events, review new workout products and pitch stories to national fitness magazines to grow their exposure. What do I do? I post to wordpress and facebook, and then go MIA for two weeks at a time because marathon training and, you know, writing for a paid living, push blogging to the back burner.

To be honest, I don’t know how much more time I could realistically carve out for this extracurricular passion of mine at this point in my life. But there is one thing I can do right this second to get closer to that end goal: I can finally buy http://www.rileduprunner.com.

So I did. For $26 a year — or about the cost of a late-night cab ride from the East Village to my apartment — I have bought a grown-up domain name to replace the much longer auto-generated wordpress one that I’ve used since I started this blog in 2012.

Was buying a domain name a giant leap forward toward my happiness-project goals? No, not really. But the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. Also, with a small town girl living in a lonely world. #journeyjokes

What change could you make to your life today to get your closer to your goals?

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3 Responses to A Blog By Any Other Name

  1. Something you didn’t talk about in your post is why you want to “take your blog more seriously.” You’re not obligated to tell us the reasons, but there are good and bad reasons in doing anything. When I first started blogging, I worked harder in growing readership. As much as I said that I was blogging for myself, let’s face it, it’s more fun when you know people are reading and commenting. While I don’t begrudge anyone the level of success that they have with blogging, I do lose interest when their blogs turn into nothing more than posts endorsing one product or another. It loses its personal touch and authenticity.

    • I agree with you 100 percent on the authenticity front. More I am thinking about my career path as I’m about to turn 30 — as one does! — and wondering how I can find ways to do the things I like doing more and do the things I don’t like doing less. I love the creative process of writing this blog, so I’ve been trying to think about ways I can do even more with it. Maybe that just means blogging five times a month instead of four. We’ll see, and I would love any and all suggestions you may have!

      • Yes to doing more of what you love and less of what you don’t!

        Unfortunately getting things like brand ambassadorships, sponsored posts, etc does mean that you need to have a regular social media presence. You don’t need to have a very large following (I have a small following of only a couple hundred blog and way less than that on Twitter and Instagram), but you need to do enough to have regular engagement and interaction. If it’s finding time to write posts is a problem, you could write shorter posts (one thoughtful paragraph about a single idea), do more tweeting, or post more photos with a short narrative. I don’t think frequency of posts matter as much as the engagement and interaction that you get from followers.

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