“If you can’t figure out your purpose, figure out your passion. For your passion will lead you right into your purpose.”
I can’t make those words big enough.
This topic is debatable, and I’ve seen many arguments that say “following your passion” is not exactly a healthy and sound advice. Still, I believe that when it comes to blogging, the most successful and authentic bloggers are those who dared to follow their passion and live it out.
That said, passion is not going to be enough to sustain a blog but it sure is one of the best ways to start.
Purpose and passion go together,
even especially in blogging. And we’ll get to the “following your passion” part later, but I want to talk about purpose first.
One thing I observed about what sets successful bloggers apart from the ones who eventually quit is their clear grasp of what their purpose is for their life and how that purpose translates to their blog.
You’ll see me reiterate this over and over on this blog simply because I believe that it’s true: If your life’s purpose is closely intertwined with your blog’s purpose, you’ll see a blog that grows with you through time.
Purpose keeps you going even when passion is running low or profit is fluctuating or algorithms are constantly shifting.
Purpose brings meaning to your craft and gives you a conviction that’s bigger than yourself.
It gives you clarity and direction, and therefore a more intentional approach to creating content and monetizing. It fires up something inside of you and fills your heart, making you inspired to create more meaningful content.
It makes you show up every day, excited to get things done.
And all of these naturally results to consistently creating content that resonates with your target readers and makes a lasting impact.Following your PASSION is one of the best ways to start a blog, but following through with PURPOSE keeps you going even when passions are shifting, profit is fluctuating, and algorithms are constantly changing. Click To Tweet
Knowing your purpose is an ongoing pursuit, a continuous process of discovery, and definitely one that can’t be confined in a single step. In fact, every step hinges on purpose.
I came up with a simple formula to help you get started.
Our Purpose Formula for Blogging
As shown above, identifying your purpose for blogging lies in the intersection of passion, profession, and people.
Other bloggers make a living blogging about topics they’re not necessarily passionate about but for us, missional and creative bloggers, it’s more than just making money.
We care about artistry and a higher calling. We want a blog that could potentially become our life’s work (or the foundation of our life’s work). We want our blog to answer someone’s biggest questions and deepest needs.
These 3 elements above are important if you want a blog that matters to you and to the world.
Let’s discuss the first one.
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What makes your heart soar?
Passion, like purpose, is a curious thing. It IS a big word. There are too many layers surrounding this topic and a broad spectrum of opinions and debates when it comes to pursuing passions.
In the case of blogging, others will argue that a profitable blog doesn’t have to be about your passions. And that’s partly true. You can definitely blog about just any trending topic you can think of and make a lot of money.
If you’re a businessman, this is likely what you would do: Create a blog about, say, keto diet just because it’s a hot topic these days, even when you don’t practice keto yourself. You research the heck out of the topic, hire ghostwriters to create keyword-rich content about everything keto, fill up half the blog’s pages with ads. Done.
But if you’re a passionate creative blogger, you know that there’s more to creating content than generating cash. You care about artistry and a higher calling.
You want to invest your life into something that pays the bills AND fulfills you creatively at the same time.
You want to tell stories and lessons from your journey with a deep desire to inspire others in their own journey.
You want to have your name on the byline of a piece of content you’re actually proud of.
And isn’t this our ultimate dream as creatives? To have the freedom to write what we’re passionate about and afford to do it every day, full-time?
This is why you begin brainstorming your blog’s purpose with a list of your creative passions.
Take note that passions may change through seasons, so you’ll have to learn to pivot later on. But for now, focus on what’s in your heart today.
I reckon you don’t have to look far and wide to know what these are, because, hint, these are the things that make you daydream in the morning and sleepless at night.
Passion is something that runs deep inside of you. Relentlessly. You feel it in your bones, you know you’re good at it for a reason, and you know you can inspire others through it.
Earlier I mentioned that my passion for blogging and designing websites started as early as when I was 15 years old. Many 15-year olds wouldn’t have the patience to study html outside of school, but somehow my desire to master the craft burned deep inside of me through the years. I didn’t know it at that time but my livelihood basically sprung up from this “passion”.
Now, more than 20 years have passed and I still find myself awake at night thinking about all the things I can still do with my blog, and how to help others find their own calling and tell their own story also.
Ergo, The Purpose Blog. (This blog you’re reading right now.)
How about you? What are you passionate about? Do you suddenly feel excited and scared and overwhelmed just thinking about it, all at the same time? Then you’re on the right track.
Think of your blog as something that could potentially be the foundation of your life’s work. Write down the topics that give you joy and won’t get tired talking about for years to come. Answer the following:
- What are your creative passions? Books? Travel? Music? Interior Design? Crafting? Scrapbooking? Makeup Artistry? Fashion? Food? Culture? Film?
- What are your unique giftings or God-given skills? Writing? Blogging? Cooking? Lettering? Photography? Entrepreneurship? Graphic or Web Design?
- Is there a specific worldview or lifestyle you’re passionate about? Living a creative life? Slow living? Simple living? Minimalism? Healthy living? Homeschooling? Exploring cultures and the world?
- Extra question: What is your current season in life? Are you a student? A fresh graduate? A person at the height of your career? A wife or a husband? A mom or a dad?
When you’re done, group similar ideas together and see if you can come up with unique combinations.
Your season in life may also be a factor in identifying your passions. Mothers may naturally be passionate about parenting or homeschooling. Students may be interested to talk about careers or travel. Future brides may be naturally inclined to talk about weddings, etc. Which brings me to my next topic.
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Consider seasonal shifts when identifying your passions
Let me segue for a moment and talk about seasons.
You see, our favorite excuse for not being able to blog passionately and consistently is the lack of time.
But here’s what I found out in my recent battle with blogging burnout. It wasn’t that I didn’t have the time, it was mostly that something—in my life, in my interests—shifted somewhere.
What I used to love blogging about didn’t any more fit into the direction I want to take moving forward.
Looking back, there were obvious shifts in my blog content when I became a bride, a wife, and then a mother. For the past five years, I couldn’t stop blogging about weddings, and then being newly married, and then getting pregnant, and then raising our twin daughters.
There was a natural progression in there, and I allowed myself to blog about topics that matter to me in those specific seasons of my life.
This is where I hit crossroads. I could still choose to blog about motherhood or weddings, but I realized that even though there’s no “career” I love more than being a wife and a mother, those are not exactly the topics I could keep on talking about in a blog format. I’m not the type to give “motherhood tips” or “relational tips” and I certainly didn’t want to keep blogging about weddings.
What this made me realize is that, throughout all these seasons of my life, my passion for blogging and helping creative businesses chase their dreams and do work that matters, has remained the same and most likely will remain the same for years to come.
More importantly, these topics are relevant to my career and my business. I’ve gained enough technical knowledge and professional experience about these topics, and I just couldn’t keep these things to myself. And for me, that’s where passion intersects profession. Which is what we’re going to dive into next.
Pro Tip: Be mindful of the “seasonal shifts”. You can be passionate about something right now, but you don’t necessarily see yourself making an impact on those topics for years to come.