My 3 Month Blogiversary

It’s claimed that most people who launch a blog, give up within the first three months. I published my first post on the 1st December 2017, so the fact that I am still here, lifestyle blogging the sh*t out of life, three months and one day later is a small reason to celebrate.

I can see why people don’t stick at it. Like almost everything I have ever done, blogging is harder than it looks. Far more time-consuming, bewildering and disheartening than I expected. There are moments most weeks when I think “Helen, what are you doing here apart from making an enormous fool of yourself?” But I was advised early on that patience is essential for growing a successful website, so I am hanging in there. And now seems like a good moment to reflect.

The Squash

Like most people who launch a blog, I am doing this alongside another job. Being a full-time mum. So now I’m experiencing the classic sense of doing neither job as well as I would like to. I can only describe it as feeling squashed. Having found something that I would like to commit all of my time and energy too, I often resent my other responsibilities at home. The hours in the day when kids are at school suddenly seem spectacularly short. And why are there so many holidays? The house has gone to hell at times, a low point was the night we had spaghetti hoops for tea.

Writer Helen Perry seated on sofa with coffee and digital radio

Nobody likes change. Certainly not people who are used to having me do everything for them! I need to check my expectations too. Who could describe themselves as truly free to pursue their interests? We’re all restricted, whether it be by time, finances, childcare or work commitments. I am grateful to have the hours I do to give this a shot.

The Instagram Problem

Instagram is a devil. I’ve focused on establishing it (in the short term) as a main source of traffic to my blog. I love the platform, always have, BUT it is a huge time thief. The effort involved with creating daily images, engaging followers, finding potential new ones and creating Stories several times a day, is exhausting.

Follow my Instagram efforts

My most popular Instagram post. Should I let the platform steal my time?

I wouldn’t even like to guess the number of hours I have given to it in the past 6 months. I worry that it’s a distraction and potential waste of energy. The aim is to create a solid business that exists in its own right (what happens when everyone moves on from Instagram?). Without love and attention, your Instagram following will not grow, but should I continue to allow it to dominate my time?

Go from Zero-1000 followers on Instagram

What’s in a name?

This is subject that is currently vexing me. I’m not sure how to describe myself and this site. For now, I’ve gone with blogger and blog, but have a niggling feeling that this isn’t quite the right fit for me. Perhaps writer is more accurate, and that this is simply my website? Or maybe I should revert to calling myself a journalist, which is what I’m qualified to do and have actually  (moons ago) been paid for? This is 2018 and there is so much crossover between roles in the media. Everyone turns their hand to writing, photography, video making, podcasting and more. Maybe I will invent a new job description. I would love your thoughts.

The numbers game

When you ask people what a meaningful blog readership is, they seem very reluctant to answer. All websites are different, but success can generally be measured in the number of unique users you get each month. It seems that a good number is definitely thousands. Maybe five, maybe fifteen thousand. Certainly the more the better. Currently, I’m on a little over 700 for the past month, so have a long way to go. Thank you to everyone who has clicked here already, I wish I could buy you all slice of cake.

Photograph by Helen Perry, cappucinno and cake at Velolife near Henley on Thames

The prospect of growing this significantly is daunting. I imagine it’s another reason why people throw the towel in. My strategy (perhaps a grand word for it) is to use social media posts and good SEO practice (trying to get my posts on the first page of a Google search) to help more people find my site. I’m trying to collaborate with other bloggers and Instagrammers too.

A little resolution. I am also going to post more often (upping my goal from two to three posts per week).

Come follow me on Pinterest, I have created a folder containing lots of interesting reads on social media

Business building

Partly because of The Squeeze and partly because of The Instagram Problem (and partly because this is real life) I feel I’m further than I would like to be from understanding what I can realistically achieve with this website. There is not a lot of positive talk about making money from blogging. There’s apparently not much cash in advertising, or even working with brands. So exactly what opportunities do I hope to create for myself, and am I on the right path towards achieving them? This is something I MUST focus on in the coming months.

Photography by Helen Perry, L'Occitane hand cream

It’ll be good to update this post on my 6 Month Blogiversary. With a bit of luck, I’ll still be here, and be more knowledgeable and able to answer some of the questions I have asked in above. Maybe I’ll even have a few more readers too.

The post where I admit ambitions

What do you think, are you blogging and have some advice? Or a reader? What kind of articles would you be interested to read more of…..personal thoughts, social media, interviews, beauty? I’d love to know what you enjoy. Helen x


  • Keep going Helen! I’m really enjoying your blog pieces ☺️ I think you should definitely refer to yourself as a blogger and journalist on your website and Insta profile. Might lead to other freelance writing pieces? 😘

    • Hello Jo, thank you for popping by! Great thoughts on ‘blogger & journalist’, that could really work for me. I might switch it all over today and see how it feels and looks. I’m wondering about your blogging plans now….. Hx

    • Hello Alison, it is on my list to start making some pitches. Just need to pluck up a bit more courage. Thank you for being so kind, I’m really enjoying the creative outlet (if that doesn’t sound too cheesy). Hx

  • Hey!!! I always enjoy reading your blogs, everything you say makes so much sense and lots of us can relate to it. Keep going with the hard work, you are doing an amazing job and you’ll see in three months time you’ll have at least double the amount of readers. You are an amazing journalist- blogger 😘😘😘

    • Hey Elena, I’m so glad that you find something worth reading here and that you can relate to some of my dilemmas! It has been so encouraging to have people like yourself read and leave me comments, so thank you very much. Helen xx

  • Definitely keep going! I love your photos and own unique take on things. I feel exactly the same way in terms of the Squash, loving blogging and concerns about the time suck and whether anyone’s interested in what I’m putting out there. You’re doing incredibly well! Keep going!

    • Ah thanks Andrea, I’m so glad it makes sense to you too! It’s a leap of faith everytime you publish something that you’ve written, especially when it is personal. So far people have been nothing but nice. No plans to stop yet. Helen xx

  • Hi Helen,
    Always enjoy reading your blogs and seeing your posts. I assumed you had been doing it for longer than 3 months, you seem very established!

    Definitely keep going 😀

    • Hi Jo, I’m not going anywhere yet, really enjoying myself. And the effort is made much easier when people read my posts and leave fab comments like this one. So thank you very much indeed. Lots of love, Hx

  • I really relate to your thoughts. I worry a lot! But 3 months is short time. I think you should give it at least a year. As with other start up business. So good to know you’re still here. And I think journalist is a good title. Why not? 😀🌺

    • Hello Anne-Sophie, so lovely to see your comment. Yes, I have told myself that you can’t expect too much within a year. There is still lots to learn, but it is very enjoyable to be writing again. Especially lovely when people read it, so thank you so much! Helen x

    • That made me smile Hannah, thank you. I’ll keep on rocking for a good while yet. Thanks so much for reading, H xx

  • Helen I too am a fan as you know and I think you are doing amazingly well!
    You do write brilliantly so do please put journalist (?) and blogger on your insta bio.
    You have so much to offer us all!
    I look forward to seeing where you will be in six months and feel part of your endeavours… cheers girl xxxx

    • Cheers Ashley, what a lovely comment thanks so much for taking the time to have a read :). I think I will add ‘journalist’, it feels a bit more true to what I hope to do in future. I sincerely appreciate your support over these past few months. Total admiration for how long you have been doing this!! It’s a labour of love for sure, Helen x

  • Yay! I finally committed to sitting down and reading your blog properly, which by the way, is bloody lovely and marvellous considering you’ve only been at it for 12 weeks!
    I totally get you about the numbers, its hard going sometimes but I try not to dwell too much. The likers/unlikers can take a hike as they’re not my audience anyway and the if it takes a bit longer to get likers/followers who actually engage, then I’d prefer that.
    And puuurlease don’t play down your journalism as something you did ‘moons ago’ – it’s a skill that many bloggers probably wish they had – I’d milk that if I were you, it’s part of what makes your writing brilliant!

    • Hello KellyAnn, firstly thank you SO much for taking the time to read my posts, it means the world to me. I wholeheartedly agree that we should seek quality over quantity in terms of social media engagement. I think I’m going to try changing my title to Journalist & Blogger for a while and see how it fits. I’m at the early stages of this project so think I have the luxury of playing around with a few things. Thanks for your encouragement. Helen x

    • Yes let’s Mackenzie, thanks for reading and commenting. It feels a little less overwhelming when people turn up to have a look at what you have written 🙂 H xxxx

  • I think you rock too. Out of all the blogs and insta out there I choose to read yours and follow you. I don’t know how you do it. But I like it. 🤗

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