I can’t believe it has already been one year since I started Gutsy Feeling back in June 2018! Since, then I have grown a lot, experienced many ups and downs, and most importantly learnt many lessons.
Today, I thought it would be nice to take the time to reflect on this past year, what has changed, and what I have learnt along the way.
Since starting Gutsy Feeling, I have lost 10″ of my small intestine.
I have gone into remission.
I have gained over 5000 followers across many online platforms.
I have spoke at multiple events about my experiences.
I have graduated, not once, but twice.
I have landed two co-op positions at two different architecture firms.
I have made many new friends and connections online and throughout the Windsor area.
And most importantly, I have become more confident in my skin and with my disease.
This last year has been nothing short of amazing. I have learnt so much, and experienced many ups and downs throughout this time. So, without further adieu, here are my top lessons from the last year.
1. Sharing is IMPORTANT
IBD can take on many different forms and because of this, it can be difficult to relate to others even though they may be battling the same disease. Therefore, I learnt quickly that my story matters, and that it is important to share my journey with others.
Not everyone is comfortable being super honest and open about their condition, and that is okay. But, for myself I felt that I needed to share my story with others. I know I have touched many people, and I know that even by sharing my journey I have helped people feel less alone. And for me, that is the reason why I continue to post content about my life and my journey: to help others feel like they are not in this alone.
2. Quality over Quantity
When putting your life online, it can be easy to get sucked into the idea that more is better. But, throughout the last year I have learnt to value quality over quantity. Meaning, that I would rather have fewer followers/readers/likes and have greater engagement and fans. For me, it is important to grow true genuine friendships/relationships with my followers/readers, rather than trying to build thousands of followers that don’t even care about me or my mission.
3. Monetizing is HARD
I started this blog out as a fun way to share my story and connect to others. But, as it continued to grow, and the more time I put into it, I felt it would be nice to get some money out of it. I put a lot of hard work into my blog posts, social media content, and staying active and engaged online. Therefore, I looked into brand sponsorship’s, affiliate links, and more.
But, honestly, it is way harder to land money than I thought it would be. I am still working at it, and I have been in contact with many brands. However, it does not come easy. Finding the right brands/products that are 100% aligned with my values as a person and a brand is also a big challenge. Overall, I do not write to make money, but it would be nice to be able to earn a little extra cash on the side.
4. Pinterest is a GOLD MINE
Over the past year, I have done a lot of experimenting, not only with my content, but also with marketing my content. But, through it all, I have found Pinterest to be one of the best ways I can market my content. By joining Group Pinterest Boards and using an app called Tailwind I have been able to gain hundreds of readers a day just from Pinterest. Tailwind is amazing because it allows you to schedule pins to come out each day, so you always have a steady stream of content on your Pinterest account.
If you want to try ONE FREE MONTH of Tailwind, use my referral code by CLICKING HERE. If you end up liking the service and signing up, I will receive a $15 credit, but it will cost you NOTHING extra. This is just a nice way to provide me with a little bonus for my referral link.
I have been considering doing a whole post on content marketing hacks for Pinterest, so if that is something you all are interested in, let me know and I can definitely share.
5. Not Everyone Will Like You
No matter what you do and what you preach, there will always be someone out there who disagrees. There will always be people trying to hate on your lifestyle, your habits, or your dreams. So, it is important to remember this and not let those people get to you.
Throughout the past year, I have experienced a little bit of hate. But, despite it all I have experienced A TON of love. I have so many fans, so many people building me up and supporting me, that the haters get drowned out.
This is not to say, that you should not accept constructive feedback. But, it means to take peoples opinions with a grain of salt. If you realize that you are doing something wrong, own up to it and speak openly about it. However, if someone is hating on you for no reason other than to be mean, let it go in the wind.
Overall, this past year has been nothing short of amazing, and I am so glad that I decided to bite the bullet and start this blog and build this community. I have met so many incredible people, and I feel truly blessed and loved by many.
Thank you to my loyal friends, family and boyfriend who have been there since day one, and who read every single post.
Thank you to you all, whether you started following me 12 months ago, or today. Without your continued support I would have probably quit along time ago.
I love you all more than you could ever know.
Your trusty, gutsy gal,
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