The Internet is the Wild West (And Other Thoughts After Six Months of Blogging)

 

As someone deeply in love with creative ideas and complex psychological theories, last week I found myself writing about the furnace.  

How did this happen?

Well, this blog was created in order to merge several ideas worth being obsessed about.  Instead of journaling privately, I’ve created a central location on the web for the below concepts to start talking to each other.   

  1. History - For its innumerable lessons and ability to add quirky flare.
  2. Systemizing/Empathizing Brain Science - This site features creative psychological theories highlighting the power of eccentric original thinking, beneficial social indifference, and being at peace while being different.
  3. Positive Disintegration - I’ve found this to be an extremely helpful five-stage psychological theory articulating creative drive, high sensitivity, and self-betterment instincts.
  4. Creative Living - DYI problem-solving skills can be generalized across the artistic sphere and the money/lifestyle sphere.
  5. Frugality - I believe in the ability of money management tasks to potentially buy exciting artistic freedom.
  6. Bibliotherapy - A four-stage process where books assist with mental health.
  7. The Reoccurring Vision of the Stay at Home Musician - As a new mother, I don't want to travel to play live shows anymore.  I have 30 history-themed songs waiting to see the light of day... somewhere on the internet.

Clearly, furnaces and leaky pipes do not fit on this list. (In fact, trying to write about the furnace was such a terrible experience, I had to ask my husband to do it.)  Home maintenance and home repair belong on this blog, however, because they tie into the above idea of frugality buying artistic freedom.

Mostly, I’m forcing a lot of ideas to fit together because I consider all of this to be an experiment where I don’t know exactly what I’m doing but I’m having a good time doing it.

The Internet is The New Wild West

I studied the 1800s for quite a while in order to write my upcoming album.

Why? Because I love innovative characters of the past, wide-open possibilities, the mental toughness required to withstand extreme conditions, and human problem-solving at its best in a lawless land.

I’ve found the internet to be akin to the wild west because it acts as a modern creative frontier.  There are...

  • Unexpected boom towns
  • Strangers working together to build something new
  • Unknown creatures to discover
  • Around the clock work possibilities
  • Successful prospectors
  • Disappointed prospectors
  • Get rich quick schemes
  • Innocent people being pulverized  

And you can’t believe anyone who says they know the rules.

As a reformed private person (who once quit social media for several years), I am certainly out of my element writing a money blog and sharing cost breakdowns.  

What keeps me going is my belief no one I know in person will read this. (Howdy stranger.)

Immersed in the exciting and mind-blowing times we live in, I figure I might as well try to create my own boom town. If it doesn’t work, I’ll go die in a hole somewhere and no one will know the difference.

(Of course, I would just be quitting the blog and riding off into the sunset to happily live in my small town.)

But the internet is my wild west and I plan to stick around.  I have too many things I’m curious about, I’ve found a nice gang of societal outlaws, and nothing has scared me off yet except my own brain brewing nonsense out of shadows and unknown noises.

Lowpoints During the First 6 Months of Blogging

-I thought I had technical difficulties while scheduling a post, but it turned out I just forgot what day it was.

-My website crashed when I had my first Rockstar Finance feature.  (I suppose that’s what I get for going with the cheapest hosting plan. Wah wah.)

- I learned a lot of people in this community struggle with anxiety, depression, or eating disorders.  It’s sad to see these struggles worldwide (but it's helpful to watch people tackle such issues head-on in their writing). 

-I found out there is a difference between “http:” and “https:” and I am NOT on the right side of the fence.

-Spam is annoying.  In the near future, I will need to put more research and more money into the technical side of blogging.

-To make up for those costs, I may use some Amazon affiliate links.  We'll see how that goes.

-It was a low point when my one-year-old screamed at me while I stared at a screen.  I felt like a horrible mother and a horrible blogger. So now I’ve decided screens will only come out when he is asleep or when my husband is home to help.

-Formatting takes a lot longer than I thought it would.

-I think some content on my blog was criticized and the person was right.

Highlights From The First 6 Months of Blogging

-Even though I was criticized and the person was right, I didn’t take the post down, I trusted my original intentions, and I moved on.  

-When I shared a Google Doc with my husband (and he wrote eloquently about the furnace), it reminded me of when we first made music together.  Awwww…

Some posts don't involve money.  Long live the Beats!

-While talking with some coworkers at lunch (and learning about one coworker’s obsession with Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University), I received an email in my inbox about appearing on The Financial Diet.  I tried to keep my excitement to myself.  I looked up at everyone and said, “Concerning finances, I like The Financial Diet.”

-I now have some cool badges along the side of my blog.  Years ago, these badges were a source of “legitimizing mystery” when I first started traversing the financial blogosphere.

-I’ve interviewed some pretty humble and creative people who are full of interesting ideas.

-It has been energizing to wake up extra early on certain days and talk with people from all around the world (from Finland to Seattle).  This seems like an obvious modern phenomenon, but for someone from a small community, there’s something decidedly awesome about it.

-It was a recent honor to collaborate with Kristin Wong (one of my favorite bloggers tackling the intersection between creativity and finance).  I wrote some content for her quickly and without overthinking it.  Mostly, it felt great not to turn down the task because of perfectionism or a deadline and instead make it outside that night to still play in the yard with my child and husband.

- I’ve learned one of my favorite ways to interact on social media is to conduct surveys.  

-I’m scheduled to be a guest on one of my top five favorite financial podcasts! I’m excited to talk with such passionate, socially aware, and intelligent people.

Looking at this list, it’s clear the pros outweigh the cons. Having a constant project is my favorite way to live.

Going Forward

-Starting a Youtube channel - where I read and grade my own blog posts from six months back - sounds like a good idea (and hopefully not a time suck).  Eventually, I hope for this Youtube channel to house the history songs.

I don’t find Instagram (or at least the way I’m using it) to be effective for driving traffic to the blog.  However, it functions as a daily journal. I’ll experiment with spending less time on it and more time on Reddit.  Also, I’m going to start using fewer hashtags on Instagram and try out a “story” or two.

-Staying with one post per week on the blog and interviewing one stellar person each month seems sustainable.  

-I’ll continue to read five blog posts from other bloggers each day and comment on at least one.

Let’s Take Some Time to Thank the Wild West For its Lessons

At one point in American history, fur trapping was the most lucrative enterprise an industrious person could sign up for.  Can you imagine thinking such an activity was your best shot at making some money on the side?

Here in modern times, I’m comfortably writing online or writing music lyrics while my child sleeps. Concerning entrepreneurial pursuits, I think I’ve got it pretty good (whether I make money from this eventually or not).

As always, thanks for reading.  Now I’m heading back on the wider web to explore five posts today (and these posts have nothing to do with fur trading).  Lucky me!

How were your first six months of blogging?  Did you find it worth it? Were you able to learn a lot about finance or other interests?

20 Replies to “The Internet is the Wild West (And Other Thoughts After Six Months of Blogging)”

  1. Fantastic recap! And Congratulations on 6 months of blogging!! You made it farther than most 🙂 . I’m excited to see all the new projects you’re working on and am glad to see the pros have outweighed the cons!

    To answer your question, my 6 month milestone was in January and it was definitely worth it for me. I actually don’t think I had any cons. I had no idea how much joy and connection would come from making my blog public. It’s literally changed my life and made me a happier, more grounded person. Blogging hasn’t taught me about finance or a specific subject like that, but it has helped me better understand myself. Thanks so much for writing this 🙂 .

    1. Thanks for stopping by the blog Purple! I really enjoyed your post about your first six months of blogging (it kind of gave me the idea that people write such a recap). Like you, I think I’ve learned more about the psychology of other people and about myself than I’ve learned about finance. However, I’ve definitely learned a lot about managing money and I will stick around for the learning element as well:)

      I’m glad to hear you didn’t have any cons!

      For me, I’m so jealous of your ability to meet with certain bloggers in person (you Pacific Northwesterners have quite the tribe). I think such meetings must really contribute to your happiness and motivation! Keep up everything you are doing. Stay Purple!

      1. Anytime :). So glad you enjoyed and happy it helped with your idea! Totally stick around for the learning element – I’m learning things, but nothing I ever thought I would: like coding and the the heck a cache is…As for meeting with people IRL I know I am very lucky about that, but if it makes you feel better I didn’t do that until like 4 years into my journey. We do have a good gang going over here now though that I am very grateful for. More than those meet ups, the actual friendships that come out of them are what contribute to my happiness. Thank you – I will on both counts!!

  2. Loved reading this – like all your stuff. It’s been a pleasure to be in the early stages of blogging with you. I really enjoy the connections you make among diverse ideas.

    May the good continue to outweight the bad in the future. I hope you’re blogging for a long time to come!

    Congrats on 6 months.

    1. Right back at you PFI! You have certainly left a great impression on several people in this community. I’ve felt very encouraged and supported while trying out different ideas with open-minded people like you.

  3. Congrats on making it this far! My first six months blogging was so long ago (was p years or so) that I don’t remember what they were like. I think it was back when I was trying to post 5 days a week so I was probably mainly burned out.

    Here’s to many more months of blogging I hope!

  4. Thank you for sticking with it Abigail and still being active in the community! I have no idea what I will be like five years into this (or if I’ll make it)! I can’t imagine posting more than once a week btw! That sounds insane!

  5. As always, a pleasure to read your posts, Savvy!
    It seems like you have a lot going on, and that the next 6 months will be even greater than the first six ?

    1. Thanks for stopping by Route2FI. I hope I can keep up with myself! If I switch gears and try to record some music this summer, life is going to get really busy…

  6. Congrats with the anniversary, I enjoy reading your stuff! It’s exciting to see the projects you’re working on. I’m almost hitting the 6 month mark as well – in two weeks. I didn’t know that we were so close in blogging anniversary terms, awesome!

    Keep up the good work and I’m looking forward to reading more on your blog!

    1. I didn’t know we were so close either! Congrats to you on making it this far. As you know, it is a lot of work but highly enjoyable.

  7. Angela, you are so legit, you don’t even need the badges!!! Ha ha.

    Congrats on the two-year mark coming up!

  8. Love the analogy to the Wild West—how fitting! And congratulations on six months! In spite of the lows, sounds like it’s been quite fruitful, both personally and professionally. As a new blogger as well, I have to admit I’m a bit surprised by how much learning and introspection is involved in this journey.

    Looking forward to reading more and seeing the YouTube channel!

    1. Thank you for stopping by Joyce. I wish you the best on your blogging journey as well. There is so much to learn. I imagine as I get one thing tackled, another will come up. The level of stress will probably stay the same even as I learn new things.

      I hope to get started on that YouTube channel at some point this month!

  9. What is fur trapping and how do I get started? Hahaha!

    This is the first article of yours that I’ve read. Being just under 3 months ourselves, it’s great to read what the pioneers have done before us.

    What really got me was “What keeps me going is my belief no one I know in person will read this.” This is why we blog anonymously, but I still have difficulty removing that filter. But I will start chanting “nofilter!” when I write from now on. ?

    1. Thanks for stopping by the blog Piki Dad. Glad you understand my sense of humor. I see eBay tutorials are popular lately, so maybe I should do a listicle about fur trading tips? Ha ha:) Best wishes being who are (while anonymous and otherwise).

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