Last week I ventured down to Surfers Paradise to attend my first ever blogging conference, Problogger.
For those of you not in the know, Problogger is the mother of all blogging conferences. Actually, it’s like the mother, the father, the godfather, and the whole family. As far as blogging conferences go, this one is epic.
Despite all of this, I’m sad to say that a week out from the conference, I was about an 80 per cent chance of pulling out.
I had worked myself into a nervous frenzy worried about missing the kids, worried about whether people would like me in real life as much as they do online, worried about how my introverted self would cope with two days of networking and worried about spending so much money on my hobby. You name it, I was worried about it.
The afternoon I left for Problogger, I was about a 50 per cent chance of vomiting.
I managed to pull myself together though and man, am I glad I did.
I can only describe sitting in a room among 500 or so bloggers, writers and dreamers as awe-inspiring.
Scanning the room, I could see I was surrounded with people just like me who have a passion, a dream and a desire. People who are hungry for knowledge and eager to challenge themselves. Ordinary people doing extraordinary things.
I went to this event not knowing if I should be there and left knowing that I was meant to be there.
The experience was inspirational, motivational, educational and exhausting. I even cried when I arrived home.
Anyway, today I want to share with you five things I loved about Problogger, five things I learned about blogging and five things I learned about myself.
Five things I loved about Problogger
I loved that Problogger extraordinaire Darren Rowse is a super cool, down-to-earth dude. He was relatable, generous and very, very inspiring at the conference.
I loved that you can meet someone for the first time in real life and feel like you’ve known them forever.
I loved that when You learn something new every day and I returned to the hotel from our cocktail party and heard Funky Town playing, that all we had to was look at each other and know that another drink was in order.
Bonus point: I loved that when I forgot my toothbrush the hotel concierge disappeared into a secret cupboard and gave me a brand new one.
Five things I learned about blogging (For the bloggers out there)
Put your readers first. Find out their needs, their problems, desires, challenges, fears etc.
Give back to your readers.
Rhythm is good for you and your readers.
Put some YOU into your blog.
Surround yourself with the right crowd. Find your blog tribe.
Bonus point: Give up ironing.
Five things I learned about myself
I am braver and stronger than I thought I was.
Time out from the crowds can work wonders for my introverted self.
I am surrounded with love from the blogging community.
My blogging addiction is worse than I expected.
I have a lot of hard work – and lots of fun – ahead of me.
In the coming weeks when I have a chance to digest everything I have learned in the last few days, I would love to share more of this event with you, if you’re keen.
Have you been to a blogging conference before? What was your experience?
Linking up today with Jess for IBOT.