6 Things I’ve Learned from Blogging

I can’t believe that I’ve been blogging for almost eight years! It has been an interesting journey that has taught me a lot about myself and places I’ve lived and experienced.

Naturally, I reflect on what the past year has been like to find ways that I can improve or things I can do differently. This year, I chose to share a handful of the things I’ve learned from the past seven years. I hope they inspire you to think about your blogging journey or to start a blog.

Try new things.

I’ve always been a selective eater. It hasn’t completely changed, but I’m more likely to try new things now than I was when I started my blog. Trying more things when it comes to food has helped make me more open to doing it in general. It’s a great way to open your eyes. If I hadn’t become more open to trying new food, I don’t think I would’ve ever tried a peanut butter bacon burger.

Also, COVID’s impact on the food and beverage industry forced me to try new content topics in the blogging space. I like sharing things I’ve learned with other people. If I can teach one person based on my experience or research, that truly feels amazing.

Don’t be super attached to your plans.

Things can change at a moment’s notice. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve visited a restaurant during a busy time and needed to find another place to eat because I’m super hungry. Or when a friend has to cancel last minute. You can only do but so much to prepare for unforeseen situations. To prepare myself as much as possible, I create a list of multiple restaurants in the area so I can go to a different restaurant if needed.

Food is a connector.

My closest friends are people who love food just as much–or more–than I do. It’s often incorporated somehow when we meet up. Experiencing new restaurants has helped me connect with people on a different level.

Keep learning.

If 2020 has taught me anything, it’s to keep learning even when things are uncertain. I’ve learned more since COVID-related changes were put in place than I did last year. YouTube videos, blog articles, food news…I read and viewed whatever I could to become a better blogger and content creator.

It’s okay to go solo.

When I started college, I wasn’t very comfortable going places by myself because I was in a new city. Luckily, by the time I started my blog, I knew the city a lot better and still and so much to see and learn. You can’t wait for people to do anything. It’s okay to enjoy your own company. I personally liked working that way a lot better. I loved hanging out with my big group of friends, but I loved being able to do whatever I wanted on a whim while I was by myself.

My favorite restaurant to frequent by myself was S’MAC. I remember when my suitemate was shocked that I was going to Manhattan by myself on a Tuesday evening. Here’s a post from that night.

Adapt.

You truly never know when things might change. Whether it’s a life shift or the Instagram algorithm, you have to be able to adapt to changes and try not to dwell on what things used to be. (I’m talking to myself, but raise your hand if you can relate.)

Change isn’t always easy to handle, so make sure you give yourself the space and grace to shift.

What is one thing you’ve learned in the past year? Share in the comments below.

Until next time.

Food Blogging During a Pandemic

It’s been weeks since I last posted. I hope you’ve been well and staying at home during this pandemic. I also hope that you’ve been getting your news from credible sources since misinformation spreads so fast.

I couldn’t just leave you hangin and not be transparent on my blog. If you follow me on Instagram (foodishways), I’ve shared bits of how I’m feeling. I’ve gone through waves of positivity and emptiness over the past month. Things shifted so drastically, and I couldn’t focus. I had content planned, which ultimately isn’t as important as everyone being safe and taking care of themselves. I had planned to continue to publish content regardless of what’s happening just so you, my audience, could have some regularity during this difficult time. I was more concerned with you all than I was with myself.

It’s been so difficult to change things. I have a hard time dealing with forced change. I never thought to plan for a time like this, in many aspects. Even if I did come up with a plan for a time like this, I don’t think I would’ve been as prepared as I’d like. People are concerned. People are scared. People feel stuck at home. Small businesses are suffering, especially restaurants. I know how it feels, and it’s affected the one regular thing I loved to do: blogging about restaurants and events to share with you.

Kelci Reedy - Foodish Ways

A throwback photo of me at Union Market in D.C. last year.

One of my favorite things to do in the D.C. Area is to see the cherry blossoms at peak bloom. I couldn’t share that post with you this year because I have a responsibility with this platform I have. I didn’t realize how important it was for me to use until recently. I just do it because I love it. But in recent months, I’ve realized how much people actually pay attention to the things I share. It’s wild. As a result, I couldn’t be tone deaf and share a cherry blossom season post. It would weigh too heavy on my heart to share that, even if I had disclaimers.

I urge you to stay home. I encourage you to use this time for you. If that means rest, do that. If that means learning something new, do that. If that means reconnecting with yourself or working on that thing you’ve been pushing back, do it. Don’t let LLC Twitter or Rise and Grind Twitter push you into thinking that you have to use this time to do something that you’re not ready for or want to do.

This time has made me look at communication, connection, and blogging differently. At this time, I’m not sure what that means for this blog. It may be months until we can go outside again. I want to think of valuable content to share during this time. If you have any ideas, please leave me a comment or email me at foodishways(at)gmail.com. I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

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Stay safe.

Be back soon.