Tag Archives: Wanderlust

Blog Mechanics: Give me your secrets!

Hey you– person scrolling through your reader, I need you to click and comment on this one, even if you usually scroll right past me. According to WordPress there are 160 of you who “follow” this blog. In reality, most of my clicks come from reposting on my personal or writing Facebook, (thank goodness for stats), so I realize followers don’t automatically mean clicks.

This morning I filled out an application to blog for Wanderlust Festival this summer in exchange for free admission. As I described my writing attributes, I realized my blog is no longer growing at the same pace it was a year ago, which is why I need your help. At some point, I stopped caring so much about building a platform and started writing just to write. I hit that sweet spot of enough regular readers to be happy with my little blog community.

However, the more I put myself out there in other writing forums, the more I realize the numbers matter to someone– you know, the people deciding who to blog on their behalf, the people willing to give me cool stuff and help me get out there on other platforms. While I may not need droves of readers for my own validation, I apparently could use them to help launch myself as a writer in other forums.

So, I want your insight–

What types of posts are you most likely to click on when I blog? (Teaching, writing, yoga, life…)

Have you noticed any similar patterns for your blog in terms of larger numbers of new followers in the beginning and then fewer as time goes on? Last summer I would get 1-2+ followers per day, now I’m lucky to get a couple in a month. I pick up more when I like/comment on new blogs, but I used to have people find me regularly on their own. Does WordPress expose you more in the beginning? It is possible my writing has changed over the course of a year, but in general I feel my content is pretty similar.

These questions may sound silly, I just want to understand what I am working with here. I notice frequently that other blogs don’t show up in my reader until much later, often causing me to miss posts, which makes me wonder whether the same thing happens to my blogs. Likewise, I notice many bloggers come and go, so I assume some of my followers are now abandoned blogs. At the end of the day, all that really matters is that I like doing this, but I would also like to better understand the dynamics of platform building.

Happy blogging and thanks for your thoughts!

Blogging for Wanderlust would be pretty amazing...

Blogging for Wanderlust would be pretty amazing…

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19 Days of Yoga Rambling

I know today is the 17th, but I gave myself two days of a head start in April. I have practiced yoga daily for the last 19 days, which is probably my longest stretch ever. Here are a few of my latest take aways:

1. Some days lying on the floor counts as yoga, (especially if you focus on breath and meditation and throw in a few lazy poses…). I am grateful to a lovely yoga teacher who told me this would be true. Without her permission, I might have pushed my body harder than would be beneficial.

2. Surfing the internet and reading can be happily accomplished in many yoga poses with a mat on the floor, resulting in far less neck and back tension than the couch or a computer chair. Bonus, the dogs think it’s fun to join me.

3. Yoga makes you look healthier. I have never been told so frequently that I look really healthy. That’s not a statement of vanity but instead of true gratitude. Health is a mission. True health radiates. I’ve eaten really well for years, but adding consistent yoga to the mix makes a real difference.

4. I’m less tired. Earlier in the month I was in this weird pattern of needing a nap every day after work. Now I do yoga instead and it achieves pretty much the same goal of relaxation with the added benefit of endorphins.

5. Yoga is kind of a religion. The more I practice, the more I’m interested in the spiritual aspects, and the more I feel like the mind, body, and spirit are all really connected when it comes to the health of each. I feel more emotionally constant with yoga as part of my daily routine, which spills over to the classroom and all aspects of my life.

6. Real physical strength can be built through yoga. Upper body strength has never been easy for me and I hate push-ups/weights. However, the balancing challenges of poses like crow make building upper body strength fun– I can now hold crow about three seconds, which is pretty amazing considering I was down to zero on April 29. Three seconds may not sound like much, but it feels like an accomplishment when you’re balancing all of your body weight on your spread hands and elbows. Just don’t try crow next to my brother. He doesn’t frequently practice but he’s strong enough to extend his legs to the side in advanced variations. Show off.

7. Yoga brings amazing people into your life. Yesterday an instructor I love shared the idea that when you’re brave enough to be your authentic self, you attract people with similar levels of authenticity. What started as a whim to do yoga every day in May has brought people in my distant sphere closer– so much gratitude for this. More friends with shared interests and values is a good thing indeed.

8. I’m now obsessed with Wanderlust. The posters are at all three of the studios I’ve visited this month, calling to me, “YOGA! YOGA! YOGA!” However, I don’t camp and the idea of camping alone at a festival is intimidating. I need to recruit someone to go with me. I also need to learn how to camp. It is a life skill I really should acquire… Maybe Wanderlust will convince me to give it a go.

If you’ve made it this far, bravo. I leave you with my favorite cover of “Forever Young”– discovered during a yin yoga class yesterday, (motorcycles be darned).

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Did someone say yoga?

I’m sitting on the couch, watching the rain. Spring rain, brief and warm, my favorite. The windows are open and the smell of wet earth and concrete makes me happy. I just finished home yoga and a meditation. I feel relaxed. It has been one week of yoga every day. The evenings last longer. I am more patient, at home and at work. Everything is less urgent. So far, so good.

A few quick thoughts:

1. Kundalini yoga is weird. Please feel free to correct me on that statement. I did a program on Hulu that involved lifting and dropping my body on the ground. Oh yes, and lots of chanting and breath of fire. Not my thing, but I’d try it again to be proven wrong. Still not going to buy an all-white outfit, however.

2. Yoga with a View is a better Hulu alternative. Gets straight to the point and pairs nicely with other workouts, (like walking the dogs to the park).

3. Yoga instructors make all the difference. Over the last couple weeks, I’ve discovered some really wonderful yoga instructors who actually make me want to go to class. I had been going to a yoga class that was convenient for my schedule, but with an instructor I dreaded. Now I’ve befriended a couple instructors (one who is moving to Germany, boo!) and feel much more encouraged/likely to maintain a regular studio routine.

4. Yoga buddies also make a difference. Knowing that others have joined me for daily yoga in May is keeping me true, (ahem, Friday night was definitely a challenge, but I did it!). Likewise, having people who expect you to show up to class also helps to stop the urge to just stay home and practice from the comfort of my living room.

5. Restorative yoga is amazing. I attended a free class for teacher appreciation week on Saturday that not only left me feeling deeply relaxed but also prompted me to take the most restful nap of my life. Thanks Tami! (You can check out Tami’s awesome blog here…)

6. Daily yoga is life-changing. Okay, I know I’m only a week in, but I dabbled with it in December, and I’m getting back into that groove. Not only does a daily practice inspire me to eat cleaner, but it also leaves me feeling much more centered, especially while I teach. And, speaking of teaching, I think I might want to take classes to become a yoga instructor. Not right this moment, but if I can sustain a regular practice, I would love to be able to integrate it into my work with kids (and maybe eventually adults too).

Alright, I think that’s enough thoughts on yoga for tonight, but I promise there are more to come. Perhaps you’ll join me for a daily practice and share your thoughts too?

My current obsession-- whether or not to volunteer to work at Wanderlust this summer for a free pass... Any yoga besties want in?

My current obsession– whether or not to volunteer to work at Wanderlust this summer for a free pass… Any yoga besties want in?

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