An Optimistic Blogger Tells Us About Her Corner of the Internet
Katie Hoffman is one of many bloggers out there who have claimed a corner of the internet to share with the world. Brave, deeply spiritual and beautiful from the inside out, Katie has embarked upon a journey from within; to fulfil her life’s purpose, her dreams, and accept herself by looking back on who she once was.
Katie centers her experiences in her blog entitled ‘Getting There’ around self acceptance equipped with realizations about the meaning of life and how to work on achieving her dreams. Katie’s intention is to inspire individuals to get up and follow their own dreams and ambitions.
Reasons to Be Beautiful: What encouraged you to create “Getting There”?
Katie Hoffman: Friends always come to me for advice – I have a lot to say and have a lot of opinions. It’s not that I have all the answers; however through my experiences I find I am able to help others. I started a blog so that I could share my experiences and my opinions and through that help people in similar situations.
RTBB: Was it difficult to create a blog from scratch?
KH – It was easy to start because you have things like Blogspot and WordPress. I find it hard to be consistent in terms of how often I post and having things to say. I’m also learning to be more open based on constructive criticism from friends and my writing teacher. I recognize that being more open will help readers if they are going through similar things.
RTBB: You write about the life lessons that you have experienced; why this particular base?
KH: Well having to balance dating, careers, spirituality and life in general is not unique to me! My friends, peers and people of our generation are all going through the same thing. I feel that writing about my life experiences and things I have learned can act as a support system to readers and because it’s personal I feel it is something they can relate to.
RTBB: What do you admire most about blogging?
KH – What I like the most is getting the message out there and when people leave comments saying that what I have written inspires them. It’s the fact that what I have to say can make a difference in someone’s life.
What I find difficult is getting people to know the blog is there and to check in and read it regularly. Also as much as I love to blog and use Twitter and Facebook, I feel that the personal connection with people can be lost so I try and be as personal as possible when I write.
I feel inspired anytime anybody says my post has touched them or they let me know they feel inspired by what I’ve written. It’s great knowing that I’ve helped someone work through something or have helped them feel connected with what I’ve said.
Also my blog is quite girly right?! So I love when random 50 year old women or men contact me and say that what I have written is true based on their experiences! Or when my guy friends message me and say they like what I have written and agree with it. I always thought it was just my girlfriends reading my blog – it’s great to know that older people and men are connecting with what I’ve written.
RTBB: What are your top 5 tips for individuals starting their own blog similar to yours?
KH: Just do it! Get it up there! It may be that you don’t know too much about the design of the web page or the technicalities but just start with what you have or know. You’ve heard the saying you can’t learn to drive a parked car right? Well get started and learn as you go along.
Tell your friends about it. Get them to share your blog; use Twitter, Facebook. Also get your friends to provide you feedback on your blog.
Create your niche – choose what it is you want to talk about i.e. self help, fashion, beauty. Not that you need to stick with it but it’s good to choose your niche so you can get keywords on to Google which will help people find you.
Whatever you’re blogging about become the expert. Your readers will expect you to be practicing what you preach.
And be patient. I wondered why I didn’t have 95 million viewers but you have to remind yourself why you started in the first place.
RTBB: You have entitled your corner of the Internet ‘Getting There’. Where is ‘there’?
KH: (laughs) As you may have read I’m an achieve-aholic! It’s typical of my generation, you always feel like you’ll be happy when you get that job or whatever. You always want more. My whole life has constantly been in a rush but after talking with friends about life in general I realised; life is not about the destination or the goal, but the process and the whole journey. So when I say getting there, it’s kinda sarcastic as my blog is not about getting there, it’s about the journey. I realise that if you don’t enjoy the journey when you get to the goal it sucks as it doesn’t feel rewarding. It’s as if getting there isn’t worth it.
For me though the ‘there’ is being internationally known as a speaker, author – I want to communicate and help people through that. When I was younger friends would come to me for advice and I always loved performing. I now realise how I can use those talents as an adult. I do have a disclaimer though! I’m learning that I must remember that whilst I have a destination I must leave the rest up to God. Allow things to unfold naturally…!
RTBB: The ‘My Greener Grass Syndrome’ post is insightful and reflective; how did you feel once you’d made it public?
KH: It was very healing for me to get it out there and comments made me realise that the readers identified with me. I did become vulnerable through that post but from feedback from my writing teacher I have learnt that I must be more open and specific. People don’t read a blog to read generalisations, they want to know the details and they want to know exactly what’s making life hard, what happened with that relationship, what dreams I’m pursuing and how. How did I learn the lessons that I learned…They want to be able to identify with what they’re reading – that’s why I’m open.
I always put on a happy face even when things aren’t that great inside. But I am not always happy and that post was about being real and authentic. I will definitely do that more often.
RTBB: Learning to love and accept yourself is prevalent theme through many of your posts – what discourages you from doing this?
KF - It’s the stuff that I wrote about in ‘Greener Grass…’- I’m always looking outside of me for happiness. It’s also the influence and conditioning from culture and society around what normal is and what it is to be beautiful, successful and healthy. You then end up comparing yourself to other people for example to actresses and finding you’re a dress size bigger. I compare myself to others and if I feel I’m not doing well then I feel unhappy about myself. I also find that I look for self validation outside of myself. I know that what I need to do is accept that I’m fine just as I am and just check my relationship with myself and with God.
To get over it I read books and I’m currently reading a book called ‘Return to Love’ by Marianne Williamson. Books like this help remind me what it is that really matters: love, family, friends and spirituality. Ultimately I want to get back to myself. As children, before we learnt our ABC and stuff, we loved ourselves. Kids just live their lives and I want to return to that childlike state whilst holding onto my adult wisdom.
RTBB: We absolutely resonate with your post ‘Fear and the Status Quo’. How do you recognize when fear is trying to sabotage you and how do you overcome it?
KH – I guess I recognise it when I’m following my dreams or my heart and it gets in the way by saying ‘I don’t really want to do this’ or ‘I won’t be good at that’. It’s like in the beginning I really wanted it, but when I go for it all of a sudden I don’t anymore, and there are all of these excuses as to why I shouldn’t. It always comes up when you want to follow your dream or your heart…
I’ve learned that it’s fine to be scared and so I just do it anyway. It’s OK to take risks, I mean don’t be stupid about it, but when you feel the fear do it anyway. There’s a quote that I love by Zig Ziglar: “You don’t have to be great to start; you have to start to be great’. And it’s true! Of course at the start I won’t be good enough or know enough but we will never be where we want to be if we don’t have the courage to start.
If you would like to get to know Katie better please check out her blog:
Photo by Vlad.