Looking Back on 5 Years of Blogging

This week is my 5-year anniversary of blogging! This milestone seems like a great time to reflect on my blogging journey.

I originally created a blog because I wanted a space where I could capture and share information, and perhaps discuss topics with others. I also wanted to practice and improve my writing.

I met those goals and many more! After a few years of blogging, I shared my continuing motivations in The Top  5 Reasons I Blog:

  • To learn
  • To share
  • To organize my thoughts
  • To help me remember
  • To get things off my chest

I also have FUN! I have always enjoyed writing. As a kid in the 1980’s, I was happy to receive a typewriter (along with Muppet dolls and a Speak-&-Spell) for my birthday. I used it thoroughly to write pretend-important documents until I got my hands on a computer.

Young girl with typewriter and muppets
Libby and her typewriter, early 80s

I also used to enjoy scrapbooking (journaling/telling my stories with words and pictures); since I became a minimalist, blogging fulfills that need too.

I originally named my blog “Plibby.com” because I didn’t want to use my real name (Libby), and I thought Plibby was fun to say. Silly, I know, but I was simply having fun.

My first blog post was I Don’t Want a House in February 2014. That post marked the beginning of my new ultra-minimalist lifestyle. I also dove deep into nutrition and plant-based eating, so my blog primarily focused on eating and cooking at the beginning.

I also researched and shared my thoughts about life. I reflected on how I’ve changed through the years and shared my thoughts about the meaning of life.

Reflecting in Alghero, Sardinia, Italy
Libby reflecting on life in Sardinia, Italy

However, my most popular blog in my first year was Why Continuum is Must-See TV. That article was shared by Continuum’s social media team and one of the actors, so it received lots of hits and comments. That was a fun experience!

Later, I realized the name Plibby was too meaningless; I decided to share my real name and self. I changed my domain to LibbyRome.com and updated the look-and-feel of the site. I then focused primarily on travelling and living in hotels. My post Top 10 Benefits of Living the Hotel Life gained positive attention of other bloggers and interested folks.

LibbyRome.com Traffic

2017 was the worst year of my life, but on the bright side, it was my most popular blogging year! I was misdiagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, and 6 months later correctly diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. During my misdiagnosis, I was focused on losing weight, and I shared How I Lost 25 Pounds in 2 Months. This post still has been the most popular of all; apparently lots of people are interested in weight loss success stories.

Last year, I changed my focus back to travelling and living in hotels. My blog is still a bit scattered – is it a Health blog, Travel blog, Type 1 Diabetes blog, or just a bunch of random thoughts? It’s all of the above, and I am fine with that for now.

Libby Rome woman with landscape
Libby on Vancouver Island for a Type 1 Diabetes camp, August 2018

Libbyrome.com currently has 105 blog posts. I have actually shared 120 posts, but I later removed 15 posts because they were preachy, controversial, or irrelevant. I want to keep my site relevant and make sure it accurately reflects who I am. I have averaged 2 posts per month, which is a maintainable pace that enables me to enjoy my hobby while working full-time.

Benefits of Blogging for 5 Years

  • My writing has improved. Through lots of practice, researching grammar rules, and learning from others, I am a faster and more skilled writer. I still have room to improve, but I am proud of my progress to create content that is succinct and easy-to-read.
  • My readers have supported me. For example, when I was misdiagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, the main reason I pushed my doctors to test for Type 1 was because of a caring reader on my blog. She suggested that I get tested because based on everything I was writing, I had probably been misdiagnosed. She was right, and I am so thankful for her reaching out and sharing that suggestion.
  • I learned about myself. I use my blog as a place for reflecting on my life and me. For example, I recently shared Why Am I Happy?, which was based on almost a year of seriously reflecting on that topic. Writing about my purpose and priorities in life has been therapeutic and has helped me reach goals.
  • I have helped others. Many people have thanked me because my story or information have inspired or helped them in their journeys. That makes me feel so great! A nice example is when My Lights Blink When My Blood Sugar is Too Low helped a man setup his Type 1 Diabetic nephew where his and his parents’ lights blinked off and on when his blood sugar became too low overnight.
  • I have a blog with lots of content! I am proud of my efforts. It is also very handy; I sometimes refer to my blog to help me remember things I researched or decided months or years ago.

I wonder what I will learn and how my blog will change in the next 5 years. We shall see!

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