You’ve been wanting to start a lifestyle blog for months — maybe even years. But you’re overwhelmed and don’t know where to start, or you’re unsure you have the time to commit. And then there’s that nagging feeling in the back of your mind…. what if no one wants to read your blog?
I totally get it, and I’ve been there, too. I read lifestyle blogs for years and often thought of starting my own blog before I actually committed to making it happen. When I finally decided to start a lifestyle blog, all I knew is that I was ready to create something for myself instead of just consuming what other people were creating.
I spent countless hours brainstorming the perfect name, before settling on something I changed a few months later. I spent countless hours trying out a variety of WordPress themes, getting frustrated because I couldn’t find the perfect fit, then coding my own from scratch. (Spoiler alert: I changed my blog design a few months later.)
After all of that, I realized if I wanted to start a lifestyle blog, I had to actually publish posts. I had spent so much time worrying about details that didn’t matter in the long run, that I completely missed the point.
In this post, we’ll go over what actually matters when starting your blog, as well as how to start your lifestyle blog in 6 steps.
Click a link below to jump to that section:
- Why you should start your lifestyle blog now
- How to start your lifestyle blog in 6 steps
- So, what are you waiting for?! Start your lifestyle blog TODAY.
Why you should start your lifestyle blog now
What I didn’t know in the beginning is the beauty of blogging is that it constantly changes and evolves. It’s not meant to be perfect — it’s always a work in progress.
We treat starting a blog as the end destination, when it’s really just the start of the journey. How you get started matters less than actually getting started, as soon as possible.
When you put off starting your lifestyle blog, here’s what happens:
- You waste time and energy trying to figure out all the answers, when those answers become clear in the process of publishing regularly.
- You miss opportunities to connect with your community, who can inspire ideas and blog post topics you may not have thought of otherwise.
- You’ll always wish you had started sooner, because those who have been blogging longer will always have an advantage.
In other words, the sooner you start your lifestyle blog, the sooner you can reap the benefits.
How to start your lifestyle blog in 6 steps
Let’s go over how to start your lifestyle blog, including the essential steps you need to take and what to focus on to set yourself up for success. Let’s get started!
Step 1: Define your blog vision
The biggest mistake I see people make when starting a lifestyle blog is they skip right to the tech part. They install WordPress, choose a theme, then get frustrated when their blog doesn’t look as expected… because they don’t actually have any content to fill it!
Your blog starts with your content. But if you don’t have a vision and plan for your blog, it’s much harder to get past that blank page and blinking cursor. Blogging doesn’t have an end date and requires motivation. Your motivation comes from why you want to blog in the first place.
When you define your blog vision, don’t overthink it. Remember that the blogging process is a cycle — the more you publish, the more you’ll refine your blog vision over time. You just need a starting point.
Here are a few questions to get you started:
- Why do you want to start a blog?
- What are your goals for your blog?
- What, generally, is your blog about?
- What specific topics do you want to cover on your blog?
If you get stuck, pretend you’re catching up with a friend. What are you most excited to share? What kind of advice do they ask you for?
Step 2: Create a content plan
Do you know why most lifestyle blogs don’t make it past the first year? It’s not because the blogger chose the wrong blog name or WordPress theme.
It’s because they simply stopped publishing blog posts.
Your motivation is at its highest when you first start your lifestyle blog. After all, it’s exciting to accomplish a goal you set for yourself, especially one that’s tied to your passions and things you enjoy in life.
But the number one problem I see with new bloggers is that they use up all of their time and energy focused on the logistics of getting their lifestyle blog up and running. And then they realize that publishing blog posts regularly is another huge, overwhelming task they hadn’t anticipated.
So their motivation fizzles out, and they stop publishing blog posts.
Instead, focus most of your time and energy on creating a content plan that you can stick with. You can tweak your blog design later (our themes make it easy!).
Creating a content plan probably seems like a huge task in and of itself. But, as with all things in blogging, you just need to start somewhere. Your content planning process will improve over time.
At minimum, your content plan should include these four things:
- How often you want to post.
- A short list of topics or categories you want to focus on.
- An ongoing list of blog post ideas.
- A schedule for brainstorming blog post ideas.
That’s it! And remember: You are allowed to change your mind. If you decide to publish three posts per week, and that starts to feel overwhelming, you can scale it back to one post per week. The key here is to commit to a schedule that works for you.
Blogging is like any other skill that you learn — you have to make time to practice if you want to improve.
And to make the most of your practice, you have to set yourself up for success. When you’re learning piano, for example, you have a series of exercises or a specific piece of music you’re working on when you sit down at the bench.
Similarly, when you’re blogging, you want to be prepared with blog post ideas. You may end up writing something that’s not on your idea list, and that’s ok. But those ideas will be there when you’re staring at a blinking cursor with nothing on your mind.
If you need help getting started, check out our guide Start Your Lifestyle Blog in 7 Days, which includes worksheets to help you create your content plan and write your first blog posts.
Step 3: Develop your blog brand
If you’ve made it this far in this post, you should notice a theme: You have to start somewhere and allow things to evolve over time. This is especially true with your blog brand.
Your blog brand consists of your blog vision and the aesthetics that communicate it visually to your readers.
It’s what makes your blog memorable and helps readers connect with your content.
Of course, a huge part of your blog brand is your blog name and logo, and the fonts and colors you use in your blog design. Naturally, it’s what new bloggers tend to focus on the most — after all, it’s the first thing you notice with established blogs!
But here’s the thing: Brand decisions are especially difficult to make in the beginning. Your brand naturally becomes more clear over time.
That’s why it’s important to keep your blog brand simple to start — you’ll inevitably want to make changes, and your time now is better spent focused on your content. Fonts, colors, and even your blog name can change later.
To develop your blog brand, take inspiration from the work you’ve already done defining your blog vision and creating a content plan. You should start noticing trends, which will help you in naming your blog and determining how you want your brand to look and feel.
In other words, what overall themes and adjectives come to mind when you think about your blog vision and what you want to accomplish? What do those adjectives look like to you?
Step 4: Write your first posts
While you can use demo content to set up your blog, you still have to fill it with your own content before you launch.
So why not use your own content to start?
When you set up your blog with your own content, you can set up your WordPress theme to work with your content, rather than trying to fit your content into the theme. You can launch with a more classic layout that still looks full and established, rather than trying to fill content areas with content you don’t have yet.
You can start your blog with as little as 3 posts, but 5-6 will give you a little more to work with in terms of creating a blog design that makes your blog look polished and established.
That may seem like a lot of posts to create, but you can break up the creation process into these manageable steps:
- Set a timer for 20 minutes, and brainstorm as many blog post ideas as you can.
- When the timer goes off, put a star next to the top 6 ideas you are most excited to write.
- For each idea, set a timer for 5 minutes, and write as much as you can. You can outline the post, write an intro, or whatever comes to mind.
You can do these steps all at once, or at different times to give your mind a rest. Once you’ve completed these 3 steps, you’ll have a rough draft for your 6 blog posts, so when you sit down to write you aren’t starting with a blank page.
Be sure to download our free guide Start Your Lifestyle Blog in 7 Days, which includes worksheets to walk you through this exercise, plus tips for getting in the writing mindset.
Step 5: Set up your blog
Setting up your blog is the step people usually spend most of their time and energy on. And I totally get it — you want your blog to represent you well!
But if you’ve been paying attention in this post, you know that this step should be what you spend the least amount of time and energy on.
That’s exactly why EmPress Themes exists.
Our themes are beautifully designed and thoughtfully coded to help you get back to blogging. And, most importantly, they are flexible to grow and evolve with your blogging journey.
You can always adjust your blog design later as you create more content and get clear on what readers are looking for when they visit your site.
Our free guide Start Your Lifestyle Blog in 7 days includes a step-by-step checklist to set up WordPress, choose your theme, and launch your blog. You can also check out our blog post on everything you need to get started on WordPress.
Step 6: Start blogging!
Once you launch your lifestyle blog, your blogging journey truly begins! It’s exciting to see your blog come to life, so be sure to keep the momentum going by continuing to publish posts.
With your motivation still high, now’s the time to commit to a blogging schedule and create a plan for your lifestyle blog moving forward.
Here are your next steps:
- Set yourself up for success by creating a schedule to work on your content calendar and blog posts. You should always have ideas at hand when you sit down to create blog posts, so make sure you’re scheduling a separate time for brainstorming ideas and making a rough plan for writing them.
- Create a running list of blog projects and a schedule for tackling them on an ongoing basis. Your blog may not look exactly as you want when you start because you don’t have a lot of content to work with. That’s totally natural and ok! Plan to revisit your blog design on a monthly or quarterly basis so you can make any tweaks as your content grows.
- Review your blog vision often. Your blog vision will help you remember why you wanted to start a blog in the first place, which will keep you motivated in the long run. Keeping tabs on your blog vision can also help you evaluate changes you need to make to your content and blog design as you get a clearer idea of what you want out of blogging and what your readers want from you.
And above all, remember that it’s never too late to recommit to your blog.
Life happens, and you will get off track with your publishing schedule — it happens to everyone. Revisit your blog vision and content plan (or create a new one!), and keep moving forward.
So, what are you waiting for?! Start your lifestyle blog TODAY.
If you take one thing away from this blog post, let it be this:
The sooner you start your lifestyle blog, the sooner you can reap the benefits.
You can’t grow your audience, connect with your community, and improve your blogging skills if you aren’t actually blogging. You just have to start, and the rest will fall into place over time.
And to start, you have to commit to a timeline. Sign up below for our guide Start Your Lifestyle Blog in 7 Days, and you’ll get a step-by-step daily plan with daily emails to keep you motivated and moving forward.
Don’t miss Your Blogging Roadmap, our free step-by-step daily roadmap to start your lifestyle blog in 7 days or less. We’ll help you easily build your new lifestyle blog, so you can start creating and sharing the content that matters most.