Inside My Mind: Personal Goals v5

BANNERThe first week of August has ended, and as we inch closer to fall, I am dreaming of pumpkin spice lattes, cheering at football games and the click of my cognac heel boots as I walk down the street. I have “Fall Fever” for sure, and it’s a bad case. I don’t want to wish the summer away…but I cannot wait for those leaves to turn red, yellow and orange!

This past week, I made some headway on quite a few of my goals. After reading a ton of blog posts about boosting blog statistics, building a mailing list, and growing social media…I feel confident that I will get the hang of this as each week zooms by.

Last week, I set two goal for myself (in addition to 3 existing goals):

1. Begin my Thrifty Finds series – This has been a personal goal of mine for a few weeks now, and I am happy to announce that I have actually drafted a few posts for this series. There are a lot of different posts around the topic of “thrifting”, and because of that, I have been working extra hard to make my series stand out. It is nowhere near “finalized”, but in the next week, I am hoping to release a post on some thrifty finds that I have found in my travels…we’ll see how that goes!

2. Be more active on neglected social media platforms – I just cannot get the hang of Twitter. I do know how it’s supposed to be used. I follow a number of celebrities, actors, bloggers through my personal account…but cannot for the life of me figure out how to use it to better my blogging platform! I am just going to have to keep on reading!!

3. Learn Mail Chimp – Well I have actually signed up for Mail Chimp…that is a step in the right direction! I just need to learn how to use it for personal blogging newsletters. I pick things up quickly (with the exception of Twitter, of course), so I am confident that if I just dedicate an hour or so this week to actually learning, than I may be able to accomplish this goal!!

Reach 1000 Instagram followers – Hooray!! It finally happened!! Okay, well it did happen. The number has been fluctuating between 997-1001 throughout the week, but all that matters is that the count hit four digits on Wednesday (August 5).

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Plan, plan, plan! – So I have done a lot of planning this week. I have been writing like crazy so that all of my posts will be written before they get released. I have the whole month of August planned out (each day) and will be working towards getting all of the posts written over the next week (hopefully!!). Technically, this is an ongoing goal…but since last week I specifically wanted to pre-write and plan series…I can check that off as complete!!

This week, I have no goals to add to the list of outstanding goals. I really want to work on getting the three above goals that I have existing from previous weeks complete. Whether I will complete them or not, I think focusing in on these three goals are most important for Pearls and Polkadots right now!!

New goals will be up next Sunday, and I will update you on how I did this week! I think I am going to be using Twitter a lot more this week to update you on what I am up to!! Make sure you head over and follow me at @mystyyle.

That’s all for this week…see you next Sunday!

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Inside My Mind: Personal Goals v4

BLOGGER (2)It has been a lovely, hot, and sunny week, hasn’t it? Who doesn’t love a good summer weather week? I definitely cannot complain, as I know that what is ahead for me (weather-wise) is knee-deep amounts of snow (ick). Not only is the weather contributing to my oh-so-happy mood today, but my accomplishments, definitely has boosted my mood right up!!

Sunday for me, means looking back on the previous week, assessing my accomplishments, and determining what I need to work on in order to advance my blog! I’m going to start this off by saying, most of these goals are ongoing. If you haven’t tried doing a personal goals series, I strongly suggest it. By doing this, you get to focus on what you want to accomplish, and by attaching the timeline, it pushes you to actually make those accomplishments happen.

Last week, I set one goal for myself (in addition to 3 existing goals):

1. Reach 1000 Instagram followers – It is a slow and steady crawl, I must say. But this goal continues, week after week, to remain at the top of my list. Why? Because it the ultimate goal that I want to achieve right now. I put a heavy emphasis on growing social media, because that is a huge source that can direct people to this pretty little site right here! What’s the count at this very moment? 989 (so close!!!)

2. Begin my Thrifty Finds series – Thrift fashion is becoming super popular these days. Most people don’t know this about me, but I love to thrift (so much, I have made it into a verb…)! I don’t see thrift stores as a place of “used clothing”, I see it as a place of treasures that are waiting to make someone else happy (too cliche?). It is a fact that fashion gets recycled. This is the ultimate recycling bin, if you ask me!! I have been planning, planning, and more planning to launch this series soon!!

3. Be more active on neglected social media platforms – Okay, I completely failed at this one. I failed, massively hard. I mean, Twitter is there…I use it to share posts…but do I actually use it to it’s full extent? Nope, not even a little bit! I will say though, that I have been looking into options on how to use my neglected social media platforms (Twitter, Google+, Bloglovin’) more effectively…so I guess I kind of half-completed this one?? Maybe…

Finish the #30DayWriter challenge – Woo-hoo! I feel so refreshed knowing that I actually completed this successfully!! It was definitely hard, but I managed to release every post each day, with full confidence and assurance that I had given it my all. What did I see after that? Increased traffic, comments, and engagement!! So that’s a start. I highly recommend this type of challenge to any new and upcoming blogger. It certainly whips your writing butt into shape!!

This week, I have two goals to add to the list of outstanding goals.

Plan, plan, plan! I want to have more regular series (similar to #WishlistWednesday). I don’t want to put out there just yet, what I have in my head…and what I have brainstormed so far, but I do want to say that, come September…I think there will be some things to return for!!

Learn Mail ChimpI was using Ready Graph as a default RSS feed and newsletter provider. However, there have been some really weird and inconsistent things happening with it and I am not confident in it anymore. So that’s why, I want to look into Mail Chimp. I have heard people love it, it is free and super easy to use!! So that’s what I will be trying this week!! Cross your fingers!!

Two new goals is plenty enough to have on my plate for this week, so let’s see where we are in seven days!! That’s all for now…

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Inside my Mind: Personal Goals v2

BannerOh hey again! So I said that I was going to start challenging myself every week by listing out my goals and striving to reach those goals. Throughout the month of July, I have been partaking in the #30DayWriter challenge and it has really pushed me to work on my content and have something to show for it every single day. I never would have made it this far had it not been for all of the support that I have in family, friends and my fellow bloggers!! This past Thursday, I reached my 6-month blogiversary!! (Happy Birthday Pearls and Polkadots!!). It was such an exciting and important milestone to reach and it’s only going to get better from here!!

Last week, I set three goals for myself:

1. Reach 1000 Instagram followers – As of today, I have 963 followers (woohoo!!), so I am almost there. Still working on this goal, but that’s what goals are about!! I’d like to reach that in the next month for sure!

2. Finish the #30DayWriter challenge – this challenge began July 1 and it will end July 30 (obviously). So this is not a goal that has come to its end then, however, I have been doing very well at scheduling my posts, writing content in advance, and meeting the milestones each week!! Hooray!!

3. Begin my Thrifty Finds series – I love going to browse thrift shops on the weekends. You can find some pretty cool pieces from different eras! I always seem to find something that I can work into my wardrobe. I did not meet this goal. Although I have mapped out which pieces I am going to show you, I have not written the series yet. All in good time – so look forward to that, maybe later this month.

BONUS GOAL: Pre-write my blog posts a week in advance – I was pretty successful with this bonus goal, this week. I have gotten into the routine of writing my posts at least two days in advance and then editing a bit before they are published the next morning. It is super rewarding and has made this past week pretty simple!! I have to say, this is definitely a routine I want to keep at!

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Instagram: @mystyyle

Overall, I didn’t do amazing on my first week of personal goals. However, the first two are more month-long goals! Because it is a new week, I am going to add two more goals to the list:

Learn more about LinkShare and other affiliate programs. The long term goal for this blog is to monetize it. I want Pearls and Polkadots to represent brand names through affiliate programs, or maybe lead me to being a stylist of some sorts. I have been reading up on monetizing your blog, and affiliate programs are a great way to do this (so I’ve read)…but I want to learn more about them so I know exactly how they work. Hopefully, in the next week, I will be able to make some steps towards affiliating Pearls and Polkadots OR at least learn what I have to do in order to get there!!

Line up some guest posters. Guest posting is a great way to connect and network with other bloggers. I will be guest posting on a fellow blogger’s blog in a couple of months (I won’t reveal who just yet), and I am stoked about it!! Although, I love to guest post, I want to host a few guest posters on Pearls and Polkadots. That way, I can give and get the exposure that we all need as bloggers (if this is something you are interested in, leave a comment below).

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I am going to cap my personal goals at two this week. Only because I have some previous week’s goals that I still want to achieve. Four in total is plenty to keep me motivated!!

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Inside My Mind: Personal Goals

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About a month ago, I was introduced to a blogging community that has changed my outlook on blogging completely. As I am approaching my six month mark (just four more days!!), I think back to when I first began…how I was completely new and didn’t know anything about running a website. After much support, and encouragement from so many different bloggers, family and friends, I have truly blossomed and really gotten the hang of writing on things that are true to my heart.

Recently, I wrote a post, featuring 11 things you may not know about me, which you can read here. This was all attribute to this wonderful community that I have been active with lately. One of the things that I have been picking up on through this blogging community, is the theme of personal goals. I had never considered writing my goals…and even more so, I never considered to actually share them with everyone!! So, I am going to join the clan and share my goals with you today. I’m going to try and make this a weekly occurrence…but we’ll see what happens!

Reach 1000 Instagram followers. I began my journey on Instagram when I started up an account to showcase my daily outfits. Day by day, I passed each “100” milestone and watched as my followers rose and fell. It was completely surreal to see that 500 people were interested in what I posted, and then as it jumped to 600, 750, and now 946 (as of today). I really can’t believe how big my following has gotten, compared to six months ago.

When the day comes that I reach 1000 followers, I will be overjoyed. I’ve been so tempted to get some assistance from companies such as socialfollow to help reach this goal! It’s one of the major milestones I am looking forward to. I don’t know if that will happen in a week, or a month…or even in the next six months, but it is a long term goal to grow my following to 1000+ followers (on Instagram). Oh, and by the way, if you aren’t following me yet…follow me at @mystyyle.

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Finish the #30DayWriter Challenge. This month, I joined a challenge, hosted by Nisha over at Mag Pie Hut. One post per day, for 30 days. Seems easy, right? Well…that’s what I thought when I took the challenge on. I figured, “hey, I have so much to say…it will be a breeze getting it all down and posted!” WRONG. Very, very wrong. It is hard, but so far, I am doing very well (if I do say so myself). It’s Day 12 and I am staying strong.

So let’s just see if I can make it to Day 30…

Begin my Thrifty Finds Series. Awhile back when I was new to blogging, I read a lot of series posts that I found on Pinterest. Series posts (for those of you who do not know), are posts that are weekly, and continuous for a certain amount of time. You could have a series about one topic for three days in a row (Part 1, 2 and 3). Or you could do a weekly series that designates a certain day of the week to a topic of your choice. I do this already with #WishlistWednesday, but when planning in the early stages of Pearls and Polkadots, I came up with a really great idea to showcase the thrift finds that I find all the time (I find pretty great things…).

So let’s just look forward to that, because I am making it a summer goal to make it happen (when I have the time!). Thrifty Thursdays? Potential blog title possibly…

BONUS GOAL: Pre-write my blog posts a week in advance. I have done this in the past and it has been a life saver. Usually, if I know that I won’t have time to write posts the night before or if I don’t want to be up until the wee hours of the morning (like I am now, writing this post), I write my posts in advance. However, I have only ever successfully done that once. If I just allocated 2-3 hours to blogging on a Saturday or Sunday, I could write multiple posts that I could just release throughout the week!! Now, wouldn’t that be a stress saver? Well, I am going to try harder at that, I just have to get more organized!!

Well there you have it…I have shared with you, my goals. I don’t know if I will get all of these complete in a week (like some bloggers I know), but its a jump-off point.

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It’s Back to School I Go + New Year’s Resolution!

Today marks the end of my holiday. It is back to school for me and time to hit the books! After a three week long vacation, I packed up all of my clothing and headed back to school. I can’t say it was the happiest occasion in the world…I do enjoy my relaxation time at home and miss my family when I’m at school. However, it feels nice to be back in my own place, with my own space to do whatever I want. It is a different feel from home…can’t say that I don’t miss my puppy though (the photo bomber in the photo below…)

What do I miss most? 

I would have to say my closet is one of the things I miss. That sounds superficial, but it is so true! At school, I rent one of eight rooms in a studenet house and my room happens to be the converted dining room. Therefore, there is no closet. Which means no room for anything. Somehow, I manage to get everything stored away…while resorting to interesting ways to store clothing (drawers, shelves, under my bed, under my desk…everywhere).

It's Back to School I Go + New Year's Resolution - Pearls and Polkadots     It's Back to School I Go + New Year's Resolution - Pearls and Polkadots

Anyway, I am excited to get back into my routine and have a great semester!

NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION: 

Obviously, there are the classic New Year’s Resolutions like get good grades and try to maintain a healthier lifestyle, but I have one resolution that is more realistic for the place I am at in my life now. Here is my one resolution for 2-0-1-5:

1. Continue with Pearls and Polkadots.

Pearls and Polkadots hasn’t been launched at this point, but this is definitely something that I want to be successful with. I want to make this my space for expression and creativity! We will have to see where it goes!

It's Back to School I Go + New Year's Resolution - Pearls and Polkadots

I have a really great feeling about Pearls and Polkadots and I am so excited about this 2015 year! I am really hoping that this goes well and I can’t wait to launch in a few weeks! Check back in a year from now…and we’ll see where Pearls and Polkadots is…

Happy New  Year!