This blog introduces you to my special brand of BIKE. I show you how to find your Best self, access your Inner strength, tune in to your Killer instincts, and use your Expressive voice. It's inspiring, spiritual, quirky, and it's all in your head. It's about ATTITUDE, not exercise, though that might be a side benefit.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Five lessons from the WordCount Blogathon

Having just completed a Blogathon that was initiated by Michelle Rafter, I am reminded of the Blogathon I initiated last January with a group of speakers I associate with here in Phoenix. I've organized three such events in the past three years, and I'll do it again if they want to participate, as I highly value the experience. There are so many reasons why.

In January, I was asked to write a guest post for a friend related to the last event I'd planned. She wanted to know about guest posting. So I wrote about how you can do it successfully. After this latest event, I think it's time to consider how blogging relates to my BIKE philosophy and how a blogathon can help enhance your overall blogging efforts. So here are my blogging BIKE lessons, one letter at a time:

Best self
_When I'm at my best, I'm a helper--both to me and to others. That being said, I think blogging allows a person the opportunity to see first-hand what your best self looks like. Are you open to exploring other people's blogs and commenting on their individual posts? If so, they will generally return the favor. You can gain many new readers through this kind of exploration. Participating in a blogathon can help make it easier, as it brings the bloggers to you. You don't have to spend a lot of time doing long and drawn out Google searches. Even if these bloggers aren't in your target market, they may help you find others who are. It pays to be generous. That's who you are when you are at your best.

Inner strength

_Blogging requires a tenacity that may not be everyone's normal mode of operation. If it's not yours, a blogathon can help you develop that will power. It takes staying power to blog for 30 days straight, or more. You have to be willing to show up, even if you're tired or cranky or uninspired. If you can rely on your inner strength to guide you, blogging regularly can cure all of those ills. The more you blog, the more ideas you have, the more eager you are to post, the less bored you will be with your blog. Your audience will recognize that in the content you bring to them. When you see for yourself what you are capable of, you will want to repeat the success.

Killer instinct

_Honing in on what really matters to you as a writer of your own blog can be discovered much more easily when you blog regularly. Perhaps you can remember when you first started out. You had no clear understanding or vision of what you wanted to accomplish with your blog. Maybe you had an idea, but it wasn't fully fleshed out; you were just becoming aware of the possibility. As you added more posts to your online collection, you began to see a pattern. Your vision gained clarity, and your instincts kicked in. You could actually plan ahead and maybe even pre-write some posts. It makes sense that the more you pay attention to an activity, the more comfortable you'll feel with it, and the more you will want to participate in it. A blogathon can be the impetus you need to develop your finely tuned, or killer, instincts. Trust that they will help you hone your skills and develop the acute insight that makes you the writer you really are.

Expressive voice
_A blogathon is also the perfect method to develop your voice. Once you have your topic, realize you can show up regularly, and trust that what you have to say matters to someone, you'll begin to see your voice emerge. You now become willing to share your message. You can see it's a worthwhile endeavor, that someone beside yourself gets satisfaction from your words and might even want to participate in this endeavor with you. Your readers begin asking you to share posts or exchange dialogue. Ah-ha! You see? You are making a difference. It's time to reach out.

You can now see for yourself, blogging is a group effort. Hopefully, my BIKE philosophy has clarified this for you. We are in this together. Of all the lessons learned in a blogathon, I believe that is the one that will have the most impact.


Kristie Sloan said...

Jackie, that was great! I really like your BIKE philosophy as well. Thanks for all the great posts. Your blog has been one of my favorites!

BIKE LADY said...

Kristie, thank you so much! I hope I'll be seeing more of you in the blogosphere. Please sign up for my RSS feed or follow me, if you would like. I'll do the same.

Jan said...

Hey Jackie, Was that fun or what! Loved your post and will see you tomorrow at the party.(I just joined Twitter so I could join the party!)

BIKE LADY said...

Jan, I saw that. I followed you! Thanks.

Jen said...

Jackie, This list is great, but I especially like #2. I also found that I had more ideas and more energy for blogging during the Blogathon. I also just wanted to say that I really enjoyed the your inspiration theme this month, so much so that I've come back many times. I'm looking forward to reading more.

Anjuli said...

What a great 'round up' to the blogathon! I've said it before- but I think it is worth repeating- your blog is indeed inspiring!

Joy said...

Great post, Jackie. I especially liked the "B" in your BIKE acronym. Important to remember.

Babette said...

As ever, great points. You were an inspiration with your visiting...I couldnt keep UP! But one of the things I most enjoyed, too, was becoming part of a new community.

BIKE LADY said...

Thanks, Barb. And I couldn't keep up, either. I missed entirely the guy whose blog includes art work that his kids created. So cute. I'm really sorry I missed that one. I have no idea how. Have to visit it now. I just followed him on Twitter today, after the Party.

Kathleen Murray said...


Another terrific post! And so true about blogging being a group effort. It was so much fun to connect with all these new writers, I could just feel the energy and, as you pointed out, what you put out there, you really got back in spades. Thanks for all the visits and inspiration. Can't wait to see what this month's topic will be at BIKE:)


Joan Lambert Bailey said...

This was a great post. I really liked your point about honing your skills and focus. I feel that's something I need to do, and reading your post confirmed it. I also quite liked B. It's a good reminder. I've really enjoyed reading your blog, by the way! Thanks so much!

BIKE LADY said...

Thanks, everyone, for the kind remarks. Let's keep visiting eachother's blogs and sharing links on the social media networks. As you've learned from the Blogathon--it can really ramp up the readership, your credibility and your platform.