Saturday Shout Out – Australian Beautiful Disaster

Australian Beautiful Disaster

Today’s Saturday Shout Out goes to Australian Beautiful Disaster, a relatively new blog that has been going for the past 4 months!

Australian Beautiful Disaster is a personal blog about surviving and recovery: abuse and mental health and covering topics regarding the same.

Favorite posts written by Australian Beautiful Disaster are

I covered my story and know that so many people can relate to and can now write stories that spread awareness in the same area.

You can also find Australian Beautiful Disaster over on Instagram and Facebook.

Please pop over and say hi!

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How do You Feel About Re-Blogs?

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I’ve been fairly lucky with the blog in the past year, I have not had any negative or hateful comments left for me and when the Tygpress blog skim thing happened I seemed to escape that where many other bloggers had work of theirs taken and shared on that site without their knowledge.  But today I am asking how you feel about re-blogs?

Re-blogging is a way for bloggers to share great content that they have read, written by another blogger, that is shared to the re-blogger’s audience.  Usually, there is a comment by the re-blogger about the post they are sharing and could be about how great the post was, or how it is relevant to something that has been raised on their own blog, or something about how the post resonated with them.  I have occasionally re-blogged others posts if I think it will help them (for example, I have shared a blog post where someone was looking for people to answer a Survey Monkey questionnaire to help with their dissertation), or because I really loved what they had written and thought other readers may like it and other work that the original writer had written.

I don’t usually mind my posts being re-blogged, I have always either been asked if I minded someone sharing my posts or they have re-blogged with a lovely comment about my writing.

Since Tygpress happened I have always checked out the blog that has re-shared my posts, and mostly it has been people that I follow, regular commenters or genuine blogs that I have then taken a look at and started to follow as they put out their own work which is brilliant.

Yesterday though, I had to disable my re-blog button.  I had a blog share a few posts of mine a short while ago but forgot to check out the blog to see what the blog my work was being shared to was like and the sort of content they were putting out.  I had 2 notifications in quick succession of each other yesterday to say that 2 of my posts had been shared by this blogger.  Having recognised the name of the blogger it jolted my memory and I set about checking this site out.

A couple of things have got me suspicious of the site that re-blogged my work.  Scrolling through their site it seems that all they have ever done is re-blog other peoples posts, never leave a comment why they were re-blogging it, all of the posts are different to each other that have been re-blogged – there is no overarching theme to any of them, the reblogged posts all seem to be on certain days and within minutes of each other, there is no “About” page for the author of the site just a generic contact form, there don’t seem to be any comments on the posts shared but a few likes here and there, and the comments that I left on my re-blogged content asking for my posts to be removed seem to have been deleted.

Something doesn’t feel right to me about this, so what should I do?  Any advice would be greaty appreciated.

Top 10 Blogging Tips

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Today I am sharing my Top 10 Blogging Tips which I have learned in my (almost) year of running this blog!

  • Consistency.

Whether you blog once a day, week or month or any other timeframe it is worth being consistent with your publishing calendar.  If readers know when you post then they will keep coming back for more and know when to expect a post from you.  As a reader of many blogs, it can be frustrating to think you may have missed a post from someone, only to check and find that there isn’t a new post for you to read.

  • Schedule.

Writing posts in advance is a great way to ensure that you post consistently, the scheduler on WordPress is brilliant for writing posts and then being able to set when the post goes live on your blog.

The other type of schedule that is also important is a posting schedule which can be as simple or complex as you like.  Once you know when you want to post items, grab a calendar and make note of all the days you want the content to go out then start assigning blog titles or ideas to those days.  This can help you to stay focused and can help you to avoid bloggers block.

  • Spellings and Grammar.

Always check your work for spelling and grammar mistakes!  I use Grammarly to check my blog posts before hitting the publish button.  Sometimes the wrong word may be used but in all, I find this program to be a really useful tool.  It can also be used to check for any grammar mistakes too such as missing commas or full stops.

  • Links.

I find it really useful to add links when I am talking about products, and I really love it when other bloggers include links as it gives me the chance to check out the products they are talking about.  I have read about how adding links can increase your SEO and website ranking, but, for me as a blogger, I am more interested in giving my reader a link so they can view what I am talking about.  Remember, if you are using affiliate links to let people know.  I was using affiliate links but don’t anymore as I only want to link to things I have used or believe in (and Amazon kicked me off of their Affiliates program as I never got a sale through it…).

  • Tags and Categories.

Always make sure you utilize the categories and tags function!  Categories help your reader to find other posts that are similar in nature or theme on your blog and tags help new readers to find your blog posts.  For best visibility in the Reader section, I tend to use between 3 and 10 tags for my post to show up in WordPress searches.

  • Font and Layout.

Choose a layout that is easy to navigate.  I read once that you should think of an older relative visiting your site and trying to navigate around it, you want to make it simple for them to use and find what they are looking for.  Choose a font that is easy to read and not to light in a tone that it starts to disappear into the background.  You want your readers to easily be able to read what you have written and stay on your site reading other posts, not struggle to read one line of text and then leave!

  • Concise.

Think about what you want to say and stick to the point.  People have clicked onto your blog post to read something but they don’t want to have to read all of your thoughts that you have had in the day to get there.  This tip ties in really well with the Schedule tip, as with the right schedule and a little pre-planning you will know what it is that you want to say before you even write it thus eliminating the dreaded waffle!

  • Social Media.

It is ok not to have social media for your blog, and it is ok if you do but don’t use it regularly, and it’s equally as ok if you use social media constantly when it comes to your blog.  I have had facebook then came off of it at the beginning of the year, I have a Twitter account for the blog and Instagram, and while I tried for a while with Instagram I just found it hard work to keep sharing on there, and I’ve never really understood Twitter, and that is ok.  I have a few ideas planned for those channels but I’m not that bothered.  Don’t feel that you have to be on every social media platform available and don’t put pressure on yourself to post to those accounts if you do.

  • Read, Comment and Follow.

I have a wonderful group of friends on here that I have made over time, most of them I have found when searching for interesting posts to read.  I always look forward to reading their posts.  Find blogs that are in a similar niche to you and follow them, comment on their blogs from time to time and get to know them, blogging can be tough if you don’t have friends to support.

  • Blog what you Love.

Writing a blog post about something that interests you, that you are passionate about, love or know about is a whole lot easier than forcing yourself to write about something you dislike or have no idea about, this is why you will never find a post about quantum physics on this blog!  If you love or enjoy something it is much easier to write about and I have found that reading a post that someone has written with a genuine passion for the subject is a joy to read and I can feel how much they enjoy that subject.  Readers can always tell if a post has been forced or if it comes from enjoyment!

What blogging tips do you have?  I’d really love to know in the comments!

Words on Wednesday

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I’ve had the tv on for a fair amount of time over the past few weeks, partly as background noise and partly to fill my time when I have been unable to do tasks I want to because of my injured shoulder.  In that time I have seen a large number of adverts, which is what I want to talk about today.

Does sexism still exist, especially in advertising?  From all of the adverts I have seen I am pretty sure that the answer is yes.  I’ve seen adverts for weight loss aids, healthy eating plans, skincare in the form of facial treatments to shower gels and moisturisers, haircare, clothing, shoes and accessories, these adverts have predominantly featured women and been aimed at women.

Advertising seems to be one market that, should an alien being watch, they may come to the conclusion that women are obsessed with their looks and not much else.  All of the women I know or have met, at any stage in their life, are a lot less superficial than the adverts will have you believe.  Women have hobbies and interests, some like to go running, camping, to gigs, motorbiking, gardening, others may be the main fixer of things, researcher, reader, gamer, so why do these kinds of advert still exist?

From my general experience, men have skincare concerns and may want to take better care of their skin (shaving aside), men shower and use shampoo, some even use conditioner, men may want to lose weight or eat more healthy, men buy clothes, shoes and accessories so why are we not seeing an equal amount of this kind of advert being targeted at men?

It’s no wonder that women feel under pressure to look a certain way, buy into the latest fashion fads and spend so much time in the bathroom either getting rid of hair or covering up the ones they do have with another colour.  And it is no surprise that so many women have body hangups when we see this kind of advertising day in day out.

Are we ever able to escape this nonsense without having to get rid of our televisions, avoid magazines and cancel our internet subscriptions?

If you have any thoughts on anything raised here, let me know in the comments!  I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on this!

I wrote a similar post a while ago about targeted advertising which you can read here.

Diary, Planner and Journal Update

Diary

It doesn’t seem that long ago that I last wrote my Diary, Planner and Journal Review, and given that it was just 3 months ago not much time has really passed.  The last time I wrote about my planner, journal and diary I wrote about how I was still using my Filofax Malden and had also been using a bullet journal for all my blogging and life needs and not much has changed in that time.

I am still loving using my bullet journal which has become my main planner for all things blog and life related and my Filofax seems to be getting used a little less than before, its main use now is to accompany me to doctors appointments and when I go shopping.

I am really liking my bullet journal more and more every day and think I may have found the best thing for me to use for all of my needs, aside from my blog schedule, blog notes and other social media ideas I don’t have much that I need to keep track of day to day.

I really like that I can change around the layout from one month to the next, I have trackers to help me manage everything blog related, from writing a post, creating an image and even keeping track of when it has been scheduled which is a great help.

I have enough space in it to write down any thoughts and ideas that I have, space to write down reminders of things I need to do and a place to keep a list of things that I would like to do.

I know which layout I prefer and what sort of things I like to have on hand, which pages and layouts I use the most and the ones which don’t work for me.  And, I am fairly sure this is the type of planner I will be using next year too…in fact, I am so sure that I have already got my 2020 Bullet Journal 80% set up already!  The only thing I am not too sure about is whether I am able to resist buying any other planners for next year…only time will tell I guess?

What planners, journal or diary have you been using this year?  Has it suited all of your needs?  Let me know in the comments!

Blog Post Inspiration

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In my (nearly) one year of running this blog I have learned that inspiration is a funny thing.  Sitting and waiting for inspiration to hit never really seems to work, in fact, it never really comes if you sit and wait for it, in order to find the inspiration you need to go and seek it out.

I find inspiration in everyday things, things that I do, see, hear or read.  My phone holds a ton of images, whether they are ones I have actively taken myself or things that I have saved, screenshots of information and even a whole lot of notes made in my “Notes” app.

Whenever I see something that makes me think I like to write it down and refer back to it later.  I always ask myself “How many words could I write about this?” and “Is the subject interesting?” before turning it into a blog post.

I like working to a schedule and having tried and tested posts that I can fall back on in case I’m not particularly inspired, though most posts are inspired by something – book reviews, product reviews, outfits, the change in the seasons, things I have been up to, things I am looking forward to, what has been on my mind.  And a lot of these posts become monthly features that get incorporated into my schedule time and time again.

If you are lacking in inspiration, look around you, really take time to look and note the things that catch your eye, the sights, the smells, the thoughts you have, start reading – any book, blog or newspaper will do, take yourself somewhere – real or imaginary, and write about that.

Inspiration is always around, you just need to know where to look for it.

What things inspire you?  I know that different things inspire each and every one of us and I’d really love to hear what inspires you in the comments!

Saturday Shout Out

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Saturday Shout Out gives you all a chance to meet some new bloggers, find new blogs to read or get your blog noticed a bit more. It is my way of thanking the blogging community for being so supportive of me and my little blog and introducing new blogs that you may not have seen or read before.

What this means…

Every Saturday I will choose one blog, share a bit about it along with your blog link. I will also share your blog to my Instagram account and my Twitter account.

If you are interested in taking part then drop me an email to my.colourful.life@outlook.com with Saturday Shout Out as the subject line and I will send you a form to fill out!

Weekly Roundup 01/09/19 – 07/09/19

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  • Reading

I’ve been slowly making my way through my October issue of Blogosphere magazine.  There is so much contained in this magazine which is really useful, interesting and well written that I really love to take my time reading it.  I sit with a coffee, snuggled up with Roxy and have a read of a few pages at a time, devouring it slowly like it is fine chocolate!

  • Watching

Man Vs Food has been on my tv a lot this week along with Rachel Khoo’s Swedish Kitchen, both are on Food Network (Channel 41 on Freeview!).  I’ve found that the Food Network is the perfect thing to have on when I’m working on my blog and business, it’s interesting but not overly distracting, plus the food is amazing!

  • Listening to

This week I have listened to another audiobook from Audible, The Dark Side of the Mind by Kerry Daynes, narrated by Sara Poyzer.  I really enjoyed listening to this, it was really interesting to hear about the mind and the stories about patients with mental health issues from a psychologist’s perspective.  What was really nice was that Kerry Daynes didn’t at all seem judgemental of her clients and there was an understanding of her client’s health and a look into what the causes behind the motives of her clients were.  It was really refreshing to listen to someone that had a full understanding of mental health and how different circumstances can exasperate behaviours.

  • Eating

I’ve really not been eating very well this week, in part due to the pain in my shoulder.  I find that when I am in pain I don’t think about eating so much, I get put off from eating by the pain if that makes sense?  I have been eating chips rather a lot, more out of necessity to eat something than anything else.  I have also had beans on toast which I rather enjoyed, especially as it is getting colder.  There is something emotional about beans on toast as my Mum used to either give us soup and toast or beans on toast when we were not feeling well as kids, so I suppose there is an element of comfort eating involved this week.

  • Drinking

Rose tea!  I love Yogi brand Rose Tea which is sold in Holland and Barrett.  I had run out a while ago and my local store hasn’t had any in stock for the past few weeks so when I saw they had it back in I grabbed 2 boxes of it and have been drinking it most days this week.  Sadly, I have half a box left but am thinking of placing a (large) order online so I don’t run out again!

  • Doing

I’ve spent much of this week getting my business ready to launch, doing checks on my website and tweaking a few things that I wasn’t fully happy with.  I have had a trip to the Dr’s because my shoulder was really painful and was given some super strong painkillers.  I have to take one 3x a day and was taking them first thing in the morning, lunchtime and just before bed.  They work but the bedtime one meant that I was not feeling anything when I was asleep which then led to me being in even more pain in the morning as I had slept awkwardly or something.  Thursday and Friday were spent at home not really doing much.

  • Feeling

My feelings have been up and down this week, I’ve been excited, nervous, anxious, and worried that I am not prepared for my business launch.  I have also been in pain and not able to wash or brush my hair or do much housework which has led to me feeling a bit sorry for myself.  On the flip side, I have been really proud of myself in what I have been able to achieve with some of the smaller things being abe to get done and ticked off of my to-do list.

How has your week been?  What have you been up to?  I’d love to hear in the comments!