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3 Years of Blogging at Contentment Questing

Contentment Questing is officially 3 years old! That sounds unreal even as I type the words – 3 years of blogging. I type these blog posts up every year as a reminder to myself of how far I’ve come and that I actually am making headway. If you have ever attempted a blog, or if you are just starting one, you know that making it to year 3 is not as easy as it sounds. Many blogs do not make it past 6 months. I knew nothing when I started.

If you are struggling through starting a blog, take heart! I write these “progress reports” or blog reports yearly. Year 1 of Contentment Questing and Year 2 of Contentment Questing are on the blog, but since it’s not what I mainly write about, you will need to search for them or click the links above. Rest assured – it’s a long game, but a worthwhile one. If I can do it, anyone can do it and the benefits are much more than “I made X amount of money.”

(This post contains affiliate links. If you click on a link and make a purchase, I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for your support. For more information, please see my disclosure.)

Why I Started Contentment Questing in the First Place

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I started Contentment Questing because quite simply I needed a positive mental health outlet while taking care of an elderly loved one that has since passed on. I knew that I needed something positive to focus my mind on. If I was struggling so much with this seemingly simple concept of being happy, I reasoned that other people might be struggling with it as well. It was a way for me to help myself as well as possibly make a difference to someone else.

I started with the idea that it will all be worth it if I can make a difference to one person. Through these 3 years, I have grown, as has the blog, but I have tried to stay true to that philosophy.

Why is Contentment Questing Christian Based Personal Development instead of Just Plain Personal Development?

Simply stated, I could not talk about growing as a person and finding happiness without mentioning God. I still can’t. I have a post that talks about finding your priorities, and my first one is serving God. When you try to put God first in your daily life, everything else falls into place. (Amazing, isn’t it? That’s the kind of God we serve – Amazing!)

I never intend to come across as preachy, but I could not be sincere, honest, and authentic without occasionally talking about God.

The Best Blog Posts of 2020 on Contentment Questing after 3 Years of Blogging

I published 24 new posts to Contentment Questing this year in my 3rd year of blogging, including 2 guest posts written by contributors. I started off publishing one post a week, but there have been some things this year that have been – unusual to say the least. 24 posts is still more than twice a month on average. Since my last blog report, I have published 27 posts. Considering that I also published 2 books this year, that’s not bad. 🙂 Of the posts written in 2020 the top 3 are:

1. 10 Benefits of Self Awareness that Can Have a Huge Impact

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How self aware are you? Do you realize how you come across to others and how your own actions and thoughts affect you? Becoming more self aware is a starting point for almost any type of personal development. Find how it can help you in this post. This post was published April 21,2020 and has been viewed 2300 times, most of which have been in the past 2 months. I anticipate this post will continue to pick up steam in the months ahead.

2. 94 Thought-Provoking Journal Prompts for Self-Discovery

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Sometimes you need some questions in order to guide you on your journey of getting to know yourself better. This post has 94 of them divided into different categories. Since it’s publishing in May 2020, it has been viewed 707 times.

3. Journaling for Beginners – What You Need to Know

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I have enjoyed journaling a great deal, but sometimes getting started might feel intimidating. This post will walk you through everything you need to know to get started! Since publishing it in May, it has received 707 views

Most Popular Blog Posts on Contentment Questing

Contentment Questing’s Most Popular Blog Posts by page views are:

Follower Numbers for Year 3 of Contentment Questing

If you are coming thinking that I have it completely made, you have come to the wrong place. Even after 3 years, I still have a lot to figure out. If I had to guess, I’d say my numbers are average or a bit less for a blog of this age and for the work that I’ve put into it. I have been fairly consistent, and that helps the blog to grow quite a bit.

Facebook Page followers: 265

Twitter followers: 264

Instagram: 91

Pinterest Followers 1206

Email Subscribers: 559

Follower Total: 2385

I think I’m most proud of my email list growth, but I know that it could be better. My opt-ins are still not converting well. I need to find something that will give people more value. I’m just not quite sure what that is yet.

Traffic After 3 Years of Blogging on Contentment Questing

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2020 has broken all my page view records and unique visitor counts. If there is anything that I think is going very well, it’s the traffic that CQ is seeing. Keep in mind – I am typing this in mid-November, so we still have about 6-7 weeks left in the year. These stats are for so far in 2020.

Unique visitors to Contentment Questing in 2020 – 100,060

Pageviews for Contentment Questing in 2020 – 132,357 (Wowzers!!)

I do not have a monthly average because the traffic for November of last year (2019) was 6.847 page views. I was blown away by that. In 2020, I ended October with 18,168 page views. Trust me, no one is more stunned by that than I am, especially since when I started the blog I had serious doubts if anyone would ever see it or be interested.

These numbers seem high to me, but I know that they are much less than others who have been blogging the same length of time.

Other Accomplishments, Publilcations, and Launches in 2020 – 3 Years of Blogging at Contentment Questing

I started off the year by launching my first online course, then launched 2 books, and opened up an Etsy shop. Not exactly what I thought I would do in 2020, but it does help me get closer to my goals.

Questing for Self-Motivation to Achieve Your Personal Goals Course

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This is my first online course, launched in January of 2020. The course content is good, but the title is forever long and not very catchy. I may rename it. For the most part, it has fizzled, though I have sold a few. I still believe in the content of the course. I’m not sure exactly why it fizzled, but there will probably be a re-launch of the course at some future point in time. I loved making it. I felt energized, and enthusiastic, which shows in the videos. My best friend told me “I can’t believe you’re doing all this. You’re like really good at it!”

She is the type of best friend that tells me the blunt, honest truth, so that’s high praise. If you would like to snag it before I do a relaunch (possibly with a higher price) you can check it out here if you are struggling to motivate yourself to achieve your goals. It will give you the skills to keep going, avoid roadblocks, and go after the goals that you’ve always wanted to do.

Self-Discipline in 6 Weeks Book

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If you have ever struggled with self-discipline, this is the book for you. Self-Discipline in 6 Weeks launched March 10, 2020. This is my second book, and my first one to write with a publishing company. I wrote a 45,000-word rough draft in 5.5 weeks. It was trimmed quite a bit in getting to the final published copy, but I learned that I can do anything I set my mind to. The deadlines were tight, but it was enjoyable work. I am very proud of the final product. You can get it from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Books A Million, Target, and Walmart’s websites. (And wherever else books are sold)

(I jokingly commented in my Facebook group that “You know you have it made when you see your book on Walmart’s website!)

The 5 Minute Productivity Journal

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Who is NOT struggling with productivity right now? I have several posts on the blog that are focused on productivity, but The 5 Minute Productivity Journal is a practical means of taking control of your time in just a few minutes a day. This is my 3rd book and was written with the same publishing company as Self Discipline in 6 Weeks. It currently has 22 reviews and a rating of 4.8 stars. Over 400 copies have been sold from Amazon alone! If you want to see more about it, I dedicated one entire blog post to an in-depth Review of The 5 Minute Productivity Journal.

Writing a book while trying to do virtual school with the kids was challenging, but well worth the effort. Both of these books were an opportunity the Lord saw fit to drop in my lap. Sometimes God has plans for you that you never see coming. That as certainly the case for me with these books and I give Him full credit for that.

Contentment Questing Shop on Etsy

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Most recently, I started a shop for printables on Etsy. It’s a bit of a branch out from what I usually do, but so far I’ve made a few sales. (It comes out to just under $20, but you have to start somewhere.) Most of what is on there are journal prompts, calendars, habit trackers, and other instant download pdfs designed to help you improve your life. If you like printables, be sure that you are also signed up for the VIP Library. I have some free ones there for you and I also send some out to my email list from time to time.

Free Improve My Patience Email Course

Two of my top posts are about patience. So I created a free improve my patience email course. It’s currently available by subscribing to my mailing list only. Right now it’s all text, but it is scheduled for an upgrade soon. 🙂

Things I’m Currently Struggling With in 3 Years Of Blogging

There will always be things that you struggle with when blogging, or doing any big thing, for that matter. These are things that I am currently struggling with:

  • An opt-in that converts well. Currently, I’m looking at about a 0.3% conversion rate.
  • Making the shift to focus on product development – I’ve written blog posts for so long that it’s become comfortable. I’ve got traffic coming in but not making that much money per visitor. I have 135 posts on Contentment Questing. Each one represents about 4 hours’ worth of work. Now I need to shift gears and still keep true to the core values of Contentment Questing but develop products that will empower people to live their best life.
  • Direction – What products would help my audience the most? There are many directions that I could go I’m just not sure which is the right one.
  • Shiny Object Syndrome – I could write more books, I could do freelance writing, I could develop more courses, or how about a podcast, or coaching, or….. (You get the idea)

Wins for 3 Years of Blogging at Contentment Questing

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  • Most traffic EVER!!!
  • Made 4 figures from writing books, freelancing, sales of courses, books, and affiliate products in 2020. If you take into account December of last year, which was when I was paid for Self Discipline in 6 Weeks, it’s low 5-figures! This is a win for sure because when I started my goal was just to make enough money to cover hosting for the blog. My husband told me “Let’s see if it makes enough to buy a pizza first…”
  • My audience is talking back to me and I have friends and subscribers from all over the globe.
  • Established a relationship with a publishing company. I hope they ask me to do more books!
  • Greatly increased confidence.
  • Successfully kept everything going while doing virtual school with the kids March-May and during the summer until they went back to school in August.

Wanting to Start Your Own Blog?

First, I will give you the bad news, then the good. Blogging is a long term game. You can make money and it can be a good side hustle or full-time income. There is no income cap, but you will have to work for it. There is a LOT of time investment in the beginning.

Essentials for Starting Your Own Blog

You will need:

Some sort of hosting. This lets you have your own domain name (website name) and gives you more control over what goes into your blog. I started with Bluehost, but currently use Siteground. There are good things about both of them. Bluehost you get a free domain name with and it’s cheaper to start out. Siteground, in my opinion, has better customer service and tools to make speeding up your site easier. They also back up your site, but they are more expensive.

The Blog Plan – This is not absolutely essential, but it is free, which is always a good price.

A passion for writing and helping others – most blogs are geared towards helping a specific audience.

Hosting is really the only essential. The following things I have personally used and found very helpful, but in the very beginning, all I spent money on was hosting.

Helpful Blogging resources

Blog by Number

I started out trying to figure everything out myself. It was very frustrating. This is the course that I took that felt like I had a friend in the blogging world that sat down and took my hand and showed me how to do things I had been struggling with. Suzi has an incredible gift for teaching + it’s one of the courses that gives you the most bang for your buck. She updates it every year. I am STILL learning how to do things from this course that I bought 3 years ago

Post by Number

This mini course is among the best money that I ever spent. It walked me through how to write my posts so that Google found them. It is never a guarantee, but I do have several that rank on the first page of google search. That’s how the publishing company found me in the first place – the one I have now written two books with.

Tailwind

When you are first starting, getting found on Google is hard. You will get most of your traffic through social media at first. I did and still do a lot of pinning on Pinterest of my blog posts. However, pinning as much as you need to get tiring doing it day after day. Tailwind allows you to schedule it and automate it. When I started Tailwind, I got more traffic and my pin stats started going up as well. Use this link for a free trial of Tailwind. (It will give me a bit of credit as well – it’s a win for both of us)

Other courses by Suzi Whitford

Everyone needs someone to help them. Suzi has been that person for me. She’s the one that I look up to when it comes to blogging. I have been following her since a few months after I started Contentment Questing. I would not have made it this far without her. She’s has an amazing gift to teach and break things down into simple steps. She ‘s very relatable and from talking to her you would never guess that she has made over a million dollars with her blog and retired her husband at the age of 30. She knows her stuff and has things to help you every step of the way

The Real Benefits of Blogging for 3 Years

Most blog reports focus on how much money you can make blogging. Though that is part of it, for me it’s more about making a difference in the lives of others. In doing so, I have made a difference in my own life and that of my family. I cannot tell you how much happier I am now after 3 years of blogging than I was when I started. I do struggle sometimes, just like you. Life is not all roses all the time, nor will it ever be. But that’s just life.

I have gained a great deal of confidence and expertise in the personal development field. On a personal note, I’ve grown closer to God and my spiritual life is better than ever. That means a lot. I feel like I’m using my gifts and talents in a way that makes a difference and leaves the world just a little bit better than I found it. The real benefits of my blogging for 3 years are something that no amount of money could ever buy – more peace and contentment in my own life and endeavoring to share what I learn with others.

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One Last Bit Of Encouragement for You

No matter what your goal is, I encourage you to pursue it. It may seem like fantasy now, but take it and break it into smaller pieces. Think of those smaller pieces as bricks and your goal to build a brick wall. It’s built one brick at a time. I had no idea I would end up publishing 3 books when I started blogging 3 years ago. At the time, I barely knew what I was doing, but that’s ok. Allow yourself to be a beginner.

You can do anything, but not everything (especially not at once!) There is a German Proverbs that says “Begin to weave and God will give you the thread.” I have found that to be true with this blog. I have prayed over the blog and about the blog a lot and still do. I think that’s the reason that it’s done so well – because God has blessed the effort of my hands. Sometimes we don’t know where the Lord is leading us. You might only be able to see the next step in front of you, but take it anyway.

Don’t Quit!

If I had known all that this tiny blog would lead to 3 years ago, I might have turned tail and ran! But I continue because it’s something that I feel led to do and that it’s making a difference in the lives of others. Your dream project or goal can do that as well. In my opinion, persistence is the biggest determining factor of success. Don’t quit – You will get there!

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