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Diabetes Blogs

Tips for starting your own blog!

Many of us who live with diabetes (and even some who do not!) enjoy reading diabetes blogs and blogs about a host of other topics too. There is so much to learn! And it's fun to read about how other people live and think and feel in life and with this challenging condition. Hearing other people share their experiences enables us to feel less alone in this tireless journey with diabetes or with whatever else we might be experiencing! I love reading food blogs that share so much good information and healthy recipes--- they make this life with food sensitivities a heck of a lot easier and more fun (plus a whole lot more tasty!!).

There are so many different personalities and styles between the hundreds if not thousands of diabetes bloggers across the world. It's really incredible how many people are sharing their stories and writing to help others. There is bound to be a diabetes blog that just about every single person out there can connect with!

Individuals with diabetes sharing their voices is beautiful! The ability bloggers have to not only support but lift up others in their management and care is very powerful. Especially since most of our diabetes care is provided outside the doors of our endocrinology clinic and in our own homes.

Prerequisites to blog?

Many of us have stories to tell about this life with diabetes and things we have figured out to help us live well despite the nuisances of living with a chronic health condition. A blog is a great way to share these stories and assist others living with the same condition. There are no prerequisites to becoming a blogger. Anyone who has a passion to share what they know and wants to help others can write a blog! I've even met several individuals who write blogs because it helps them feel better about their own diabetes. Their public journal becomes something interesting and informative for others to read.

You can be any age, have any type of diabetes, have lived with diabetes for 6 months or as long as 25 or more years! It doesn't matter! You can manage your diabetes in your own unique way and share about what works for you. You do not need to be a medical doctor or nurse or have any kind of medical training. You do not have to have a degree in writing or even a college degree or a high school diploma for that matter! (Wait a sec... I feel like I'm writing a Dr. Seuss story about blogging here.. lol).

I guarantee that what you write will resonate with at least one person and quite surely many more. It is your words and the way you convey them that will reach out to someone who needs to hear just what you have to say. Your personal blog will be what any number of individuals around the globe resonate with. Cool, huh?

A little bit of my blogging background..

I started writing a holistic diabetes blog two years ago after living with Type 1 diabetes for 24 years. Although I had considered blogging about being gluten free for a few years before that, I did not have the confidence to share my experience with others. Finally the call became too great to hold inside.. the beauty and truth I had come to know had to be shared---about how I make peace, joy and wellness a part of my daily life even living with chronic health conditions like Type 1 diabetes, multiple food sensitivities and hypothyroidism.

God spoke loud and clear and Diabetes Light: My holistic journey to health came into fruition in December of 2011! First with a Facebook page and a few days later my first blog post about the benefits of coconut oil! I write and share to my heart's content about the many things that make me smile while bringing me joy and health---both in blog posts and our wonderful Facebook community! (Please join us here if you are not in our community already!).

A year and a half later I took a writing position with OnTrack Diabetes and now write this weekly column at Finding Peace Between the Pokes! Blogging has been amazing on so many levels and truly life changing for me. I love blogging!!! I have friends around the country and world and get to help make others lives more meaningful by sharing my stories---my joys as well as some of the battles too. There is nothing more rewarding than feedback I receive from others letting me know my blog has touched them and inspires them to live healthier, more vibrant lives.

Awesome folks I met through blogging at the recent JDRF conference.
How does one gain a blog following?

A friend interested in entering the exciting world of diabetes blogging asked me a few days ago how one starts out... how to get your name out there and gain a following. I'm no expert, but I responded that I think it just takes a lot of hard work and time. That it's important to genuinely write and share what you like and believe in and to trust that what you write about and bring to the table will be liked.

Some will not like who they think you are nor will they like what you share and write about. And that is okay---it is not possible to please everyone or for everyone to like you. Sometimes people may be moved by what you write and share it with others. Eventually through hard work and sustained efforts and good ol' time, your writing will evolve* and your blog will reach a wider audience. (*Please don't go back and read old blog posts of mine. Like the one where I discovered Wordpress gives us multiple colors of font...).

I was also asked what I thought about Facebook advertising to promote a diabetes blog. Over the last two years and especially the last few months, Facebook has become an ever-present and hovering sales person---all the more persuasive in it's solicitations to convince me to promote my blog on each and every post. I even get notifications when Facebook feels a post is a good one to advertise as it has "performed well." It's pathetic!

I personally have made the choice never to pay for ads or sponsor posts to promote my blog. Is this a good move? I am not sure. It does not mean one way is right or wrong but I want my writing and work to speak for itself. This question did get me thinking though.. Is advertising on Facebook such a bad thing if one truly believes in their message and just wants it to reach more people? What do you think?!

A few more things...

  1. If time allows, consider writing several times per month. It will help you grow as a writer and your audience likes hearing from you! It keeps you connected.
  2. Create a Facebook page for your blog. It is a place you can share your newly written articles you've worked so hard on and form a community with people who share similar interests.
  3. Write when you feel moved or excited about something and let the words flow from you. There is nothing worse than forcing out an article---for the writer or the reader. Feels like the old days back in school when a paper was due! No good..
  4. Read lots. Books, blogs, etc. Reading helps you become a better writer.
  5. Do not compare your writing or blog to others! People will like your blog because you are being yourself. If you try to be someone else it just doesn't work. People want authenticity. People want you!
  6. Do not write to be noticed, just share from your heart---your vulnerabilities, your hopes, what you believe in. It may feel scary to click publish but I guarantee people will love to read what you shared. I wrote about the extreme vulnerabilities of a low blood sugar this summer including an unattractive  picture of myself in the middle of the low, and had an amazing outpouring of support and readership.
  7. Not everything you write has to be published. Sometimes it just feels good to get it off your chest. I cannot tell you how many articles and poems I've written that have never been read by anyone! Someday when I'm not around, you'll all be clamoring to read them, I just know it. Haha. Kidding..
  8. Don't write to gain followers or find an audience. Just be you. Share your truth and let your audience find you.
  9. You will be unable to determine what blog posts people will like. I've spent hours on articles that aren't well regarded then put out another article on a whim that I am so unsure if I should even click publish on and people love it. You just never know what people will like so don't try to guess. Just write as you wish and roll with the punches. Some articles won't be as well-liked even if it's your pride and joy. Crazy, I know! :)
  10. Your feelings will get hurt sometimes. It's not easy putting your innermost thoughts out on the front lines! And sometimes you will want people in your life to read your blog and care but they just don't. People that want to read it will, let the rest go.
  11. Sometimes you don't want to keep sharing your most personal feelings and thoughts for the world to see. Respect that and write about less private stuff during that time. When you really have something to share it will just pour out off your fingertips onto the keyboard.
  12. This may sound harsh but read what you write before you publish. Would you want to read this during your few spare moments of time today? Like I said before, not everything you write has to be published. If it's a post about how everything is so rotten in your life, send it to your mom or friend in an email instead. Sometimes just let those ramblings go. Your audience will thank you for it.
  13. Think long and hard about a good blog name before choosing one. Let your blog title speak to who you are and your message.
  14. Have fun!


How many of you have thought about blogging? What is holding you back?? Now is your chance! You've got nothing to lose by giving it a try---it doesn't have to be a lifelong commitment if it isn't a good fit. I truly believe you will love the moments you spend creating (this is very healthy!) and forget about time for a while you write... And that is something extremely good for us as moments we forget about time promotes happiness!



In Peace & Wellness,

Cynthia

 

Please join my Facebook blog community where I share inspiration for the body, mind and spirit daily! You can also connect with me on Twitter or sign up below to receive an email in your inbox when I post a new article. Thanks for reading and hope to see you around soon!

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