This post is the third in the Benefits of Blogging series, where I will cover the many benefits of blogging, for bloggers and readers.
One of the most satisfying benefits for those who create blogs is the ability to use them to enhance your learning and to strengthen your interests. Readers of blogs are also able to enjoy this benefit simply by searching for blogs on any topic throughout the world.
What do I mean by enhance learning? Everyone has a certain method that helps them learn about a new subject. For most, if you simply learn something but never use it, there is less retention of the things that you learn.
Blogging can help you retain the things that you learn. For example, if you were learning a new language, as a blogger you could start writing a blog in that language, and as a blog reader you could visit blogs in that language and interact with them through the comments. If you are studying a particular subject, you could create or find a blog on that topic and network with others interested in the same subject to discuss it.
Blogging can also help you learn to become a better writer, which is can be a personal and professional benefit. They say practice makes perfect, and so the more you practice your writing, the better you will become at it. You may find that writing comes much more easily when you blog, or even simply regularly respond to blogs via the comments.
And what about research? If there is something that you want to learn more about, but have not found the right places to research it, why not blog about it? You can essentially reach a worldwide audience and build a community of others interested in researching the same thing.
As an example of using blogs for research, I have wanted to know more about my grandmother’s side of the family in Japan, but all I have to work with is an old family registry and one or two photos. So I have created a blog, Sarukura, containing the information I know about her family. I hope to build a community interested in Genealogy (Japanese in particular) that may lead to finding out more about the family I have never known. In addition, I hope that readers who visit the blog find useful resources in their own quest to learning more about their family history.
Blogging is also a powerful way to strengthen your interests and hobbies. If you enjoy photography, why not share your photography and some tips in a blog? Others interested in photography can be inspired by you, and in turn, you will be inspired to take more photos. Professional photographers may be able to offer some advice that can lead to better photo taking techniques. You may even be able to take your hobby of photography to the next level and turn it into a freelance career opportunity, using your photo blog as your portfolio.
What about physical hobbies, such as a sport? I was surprised to learn that creating a blog about a sport that you play, in my case tennis, could actually benefit my mental game. On Tennisopolis and Hawaii Tennis (free membership required to view profile), I occasionally blog about league matches and other tennis related thoughts and personal discoveries. Knowing that a community of people would be reading this, I found myself thinking more positively about my game, which has in turn helped my mental game out on the court. I plan on doing something similar for my ballroom dancing as well.
So Many Interests, Too Many Blogs?
What you may find yourself wondering at this point is if it is possible to have a blog for all of your interests? What would it cost to have so many domains, and how much time would it take to customize them all? Is that even possible?
I say yes! I was able to create my blogs for tennis and ballroom dancing quickly and free on pre-existing communities, which comes with the bonus of already having a target audience built right into the network. For my genealogy research blog, I was able to secure the .info domain for Sarukura for $1.02, and I added it to a deluxe hosting plan that I’m already using for this domain. So the total setup cost for that site was just the $1.02! And if I didn’t want to pay anything, I could still have just gone to WordPress or Blogger for a fully free, no hosting needed blog.
Blogging Your Interests
So now it’s your turn. Do you blog about a particular subject to enhance your learning? Do you blog, or read blogs about about a particular interest or hobby? Have you found it helps strengthen it? What topics can you think of that blogging would be particularly helpful in learning and strengthening?