Blogging Goals? How to create a better blog?

So do you guys have any blogging goals? I mean do you set goals for yourself as a blogger and then try to reach them?  Do you just blog for fun, or to relieve stress? Do you blog for work, are you a career blogger? Is that the real term?

I was just talking with my husband last night about how much this blog means to me and goals that I want to achieve.  F.Y.I. I have a lot of them.  I'll share a few of the "blog" ones with you.

I would love to get a sponsor, any takers?
I would love to reach 200 followers by June. Refer your friends.
I would love to have a professional design my blog. Someday when I can afford it.
I would love to find my niche. Sometimes I feel like my blog doesn't fit in with all the other blogs.  Too mommy-ish, not mommy-ish enough. Too crafty, not crafty enough. Too nerdy, way too nerdy.
I would love to host a giveaway.  I've had giveaways sure, but hosting one is different.  They aren't self-funded ;)
I would love for this blog to encourage others, brighten their day, or be a place they look forward to visiting.

It might sound silly, but I love this blog.  I love you guys for reading this blog of mine.  I love when I get feedback from you, and I love giving feedback to you guys.  And because I love this blog and you guys, I work my butt off to make this blog better each day. 

No, really I do.  I don't know how the bigger blogs do it. Can I get me a blog mentor please?

These are just a few of the tips I've learned about blogging in the past few months.

1. Put yourself out there. Comment on others blogs, comment on others facebook pages, link up to different linky parties. If someone leaves you a comment respond.
I really try to comment back to everyone. I read somewhere that you should comment on your blog, and in a direct message to that person, but I usually only do one.  I will first try to go to their blog and leave a comment (everyone loves comments and blog traffic), if they don't have a blog or it's not listed in their profile/comment I will then try to email them. If their email and their blog aren't listed on their profile or in their comment I will then comment back to them on my post.

2. Join different social media networks, twitter, facebook, stumble upon, pinterest, networking groups for moms/women/crafters (see the buttons on my sidebar?)....

3. Be consistent with your postings.
I sometimes have a hard time with this one, sometimes I'll post 3 times in a day, and then go a few days without posting. I obviously don't get a gold star in this area.

4. Try to connect with your readers on a personal level. 
I think I try to do this...I mean I blog for me, but I also blog keeping in mind that someone is reading what I am writing, and whoever that person is doesn't want to read a boring word for word recap of how I nursed my baby for the 1,000th time while I was watching General Hospital. They want to read about how she had a blowout while I was holding her in Target and didn't have a diaper bag with me, and a lady next to me swore she would never have kids after seeing all that poop dripping down my hand.

5. Go to your blog without signing in.  Browse through it.  Is it easy to read?  Does it load quickly?  Does your blinding background distract readers from your posts?  Is it easy for readers to leave comments? Take elements that you like from other blogs and incorporate them into your blog, but make them your own, don't copy that persons exact theme/colors/design.

And for me, it's hard work tweeting, facebooking, and staying up to date with all of your guys' wonderful posts, comments, and ideas.  There are so many amazing posts I want to share, projects I want to do, and people I want to befriend.  I feel like I can't keep up sometimes, and it gives me a major case of the worries.  And when I do manage to stay on top of things during the day I feel like everything else in my little world is being neglected.  My littles, my husband, my housecleaning...

Do you guys feel the same way?  Do you get just as overwhelmed as I do? Are there any apps to help with these issues?

I really want to know how you all manage to keep everything balanced, so any tips or suggestions would be great. Or if you're like me and things are always unbalanced, share and unload some of your stress in the comment area.

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