400: Lessons from 400 Blog Posts in a Row

Today is my 400th blog post in a row.

It was hard for me to grasp until I visualized it with star emojis:

⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

Pretty cool. Will this be my last daily post? H-to-the-ell no. Daddy can’t ruin his streak.

Not that having a streak is important, mind you. If all I wanted was to have a daily streak of something under my belt I would put 99% less time and effort into each post. No, the value is to create an outlet to practice writing and improve my ability to think, observe, write and tell a great story. That being said, there is power and motivation in having a daily practice. I don’t care if I’m sick, if it’s 3AM, if my house is blown away by a tornado, if I accidentally watch the entire series of chef’s table in one sitting — I’m still going to sit down and write and ship a blog. (If my house blows away, at the very least I have a story to tell and relate to others with.) That’s the power of a daily practice.

On blog 300, I wrote 3 lessons I’ve learned since starting writing everyday.

Here are 10 more Lessons I’ve learned from 400 blog posts (in no particular order):

1. Consistency is what matters the most. That and telling the truth.

As long as you are being consistent and giving as much time and energy you have to give, it doesn’t matter if every day is perfect or not. Consistently creates confidence and creativity. My best writing ideas just flow now. Because I’ve built up a track record for myself, I know I can come up with ideas when I need to.

2. Small actions lead to big change.

The smallest change can compound into monumental change, in your life and in others. Think of how many countless times someone performed a small act of kindness or help to someone in need and that completely altered that persons trajectory in life. And for habits and skills, small actions build momentum and get-up-and-go power to pursue the person you want to be.

3. People only remember the hits.

Drake has 10 albums, hundreds of released songs, but we only remember the best ones. (I listened to Drake today, can you tell?) Same goes for everything else. (Unless it’s so bad we enjoy it) Some days, you’re just going to create crappy work. Crappy work is part of the process. For every 3 crappy days of ideas, you might have 1 amazing idea day. That amazing, and hopefully impactful idea is worth going through 100’s of crappy ideas.

4. Daily habits are anchors to the person you want to be.

Life is always going to worm its way into taking priority over your dreams. Setbacks happen, shiny objects and opportunities distract us from our goals.

But a daily habit is an anchor. It’s a rock in the storm. It’s the foundation of what we are trying to build. Solid. Secure. Ever present.

Plus there’s only so many daily habits we can have, because there’s only so much time you we have to give. Too many habits and you end up with no habits, just lots of running around and being late to everything. Daily habits forces us to really sit with ourselves and figure out what’s most important to us, and highlights how important our time is.

5. No excuse is good enough to stop you from pursuing your dreams.

Excuses highlight one of two things:

Either fear or your mind is holding you back from doing something you love.

Or you don’t really want to do it.

If you’re making excuses because you don’t want to do it, its good to take sometime with yourself and figure out why. Are the reasons why I don’t want to do this sound? Meaning, do they actually makes since and align with my values and beliefs in who I am and who I want to be? Or are they misguided or misappropriated reasons? Often it’s the case that the reason I’m making excuse is because I’m making unrealistic expectations or assumptions about how I want something to go. But sometimes an excuse just highlights the fact that actually doing the thing you’re making excuses for isn’t for you. Which is perfectly fine. That just means you have to let it go and rediscover something else you are interested in doing.

Instead, If fear is holding you back from doing something you love, then that’s exactly what you need to do. Do whatever you need to do to convince, cajole or bribe your way into starting. Once you begin, the fear (or at least the looming monsters within the fear) fade away from the light of personal experience.

6. Therapy — be that with a professional, as a vlog or blog, a band, therapy in movement (like dance or yoga) — is always a good idea.

Self-care is essentially to anything you do. Without it, you’re about as useful as a one wooden shoe, or a shake-weight. An outlet to speak your ideas and soothe yourself from what’s going on in your life and in the world.

7. Success must be defined by you.

Left to its own devices, success is an bottomless pit of things you could and should be doing. If I defined success as making a million dollars writing, I would see my past 400 posts as a failure. Fortunately, that wasn’t my expectations. Success for writing everyday is to improve a little each day. Sure, I have lofty dreams in mind beyond that, but if I at least write and post a blog every day, I know I’ve succeeded.

8. No one cares more about you — your health, happiness, skills, etc — and what you do than YOU.

I think we all secretly wish someone would do the annoying stuff for us. If only we could clone ourselves and make our clone do all the hard stuff so we can spend the day reading and baking on the beach. (of course, our clone is US, so he or she will also want to spend the day reading on the beach, so they’ll want to have a clone of themselves. Clone of a clone of a clone etc)

I’m not the biggest fan of the phrase, ‘If you want something done, you better do it yourself’. It’s usually in response of someone not meeting their (unrealistic) expectations. But there is an alternative that’s true: If you want something done in your life, you better care enough to do it yourself. (It’s a bit more of a mouthful. I’ll work on it :). In other words, no is going to care more about yourself than you. Others can help or have sympathy, but you are ultimately the person who has to execute on your vision, or start taking steps towards overcoming your setbacks. You’ve got to care. You’ve got to care until the cows come home. You’ve got to care so much you bleed.

9. The more you learn, the more you have to learn.

A little naivety gives you the courage to start. Momentum gives you drive and confidence to keep going. And going deeper shows you how little you know and how much you need to learn and master. Curiosity and love pushes you past that realization and allows you to keep learning and trying new things anyway.

Mastery is a lifelong pursuit and once you being that path, you’ll begin to learn how much a privilege and honor it is to have that relentless and lifelong pursuit.

10. Sometimes the only way to start is to not think.

Sometimes we need to let our actions move faster than our thoughts.

No fear, no uncertainty, no excuses. Just pure movement and momentum. Most of the time we know what we want, we’re just not doing them. Acting without thinking gives you a starting off point to do that.

Here are some of the things I’m still learning:

Lead with personal stories and experience.

Authentic stories relate more than any headline or social media strategy. The greater the story, the more people listen and resonate to its frequency. Trying to teach without story is a lot like trying to give health advice to a family member — unless your a certified MD, they’re probably not going to listen to you. (And even then they are still probably not going to listen, they know to much about you before you studied medicine :)

If you’re trying to help others, writing by itself is not enough.

Nobody wants to read your sh*t. Not only do you have to have to tell a interesting and compelling story, you have to go and communicate where the people you are trying to help are.

Not everyone likes to read, and that’s okay.

Some people experience the world visually, others audibly. To reach different people, you have to practice and hone a variety of mediums.

Priority. Time invested. Organization. Scheduling.

I’m not writing full time right now. As much as I wanted to put out a blog post the same time every day, it didn’t always happen. Often I would write at the end of the day. Depending on how stuffed the day was, some blog ideas only got 20, maybe 30 minutes. I’m sure there are a few posts that were great ideas but poorly executed, and some that were terrible ideas but were all I had to give in the moment. I want to put more time into each post so I can up the quality.

I should probably actually learn grammar and stuff soon too 😅

Perhaps one day I’ll catch up to Seth Godin’s 7000+ daily blogs :) Not that it matters if I do.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh W.

IG: @Renaissance.Life

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Josh Waggoner