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Why motivation is overrated in history blogging

Have you ever said this about your history blogging?

“I just haven’t got motivated today” or “I’m just not feeling in the mood, I’ll catch up tomorrow.”   

In practice, what you’re searching for is something that gives you the little spark or push to start history blogging when you’ve had a tough work or study day and you’re feeling a bit meh!

Now, don’t get me wrong, motivation is not a bad thing to get you moving.

For example, here are some of the ways I find a spark of motivation:

  • Opening up a new funky notepad
  • Listening to an inspiring or funny podcast
  • Watching a YouTuber
  • Reading someones fab history blog post
  • Starting to edit a draft post I abandoned.

But, a deeper look at motivation shows a) it’s overrated in our minds and b) it’s not enough.

What you need is drive.

How is being driven different to getting motivated?

So, what does drive, sometimes referred to as ‘purpose’ or ‘your why’ feel like? How do you know when you’ve got it?

The answer. You don’t have to reach for energy. It’s effortless.

I’m hoping you just read that and thought “hey, you know what, I do love what I do. My blog gives me energy a buzz and it feels effortless.”  

But, don’t worry if you didn’t think that. It’s perfectly fine to not know what your purpose or drive is but do you know what’s not fine? You must not stop looking for it.

Take that history blogging journey

After too much X-Factor, I detest the word ‘journey’ but that is in fact what you need to put yourself on. 

Here’s mine (so far : )

My first blogging niche was British politics and history. With two politics degrees, I thought this was a no-brainer decision. But, when I finally got motivated to write about politics, there was ZERO drive behind it. In fact, I hated it and it exhausted me. The opposite was true for writing about history. My journey (sorry) saw a new passion emerge. I began to devour everything I could about effective blogging techniques, which I hugely enjoy sharing with you here.

So, although there will be tricky or frustrating times, your history blog should not exhaust you. It should not sap your energy. It should not leave you unfulfilled, be a negative part of your life or feel like work. If you’re struggling to find your drive try these three steps.

Three Steps to Help Discover Your Drive

One: Find your happy place

A good place to start is to list anything you like or makes you happy about history and blogging:

  • What do I like about history blogging or being a history blogger?
  • What am I good at?
  • What content, features or ideas do I like within other people’s history blogs?
  • What would I do if I wasn’t afraid or if there were no limitations?

Related Post: How to start history blogging again when you feel stuck.

Two: Try new things

You will not find drive doing the same thing you did last time that left you flat.

I encourage you to film that quirky reel dressed in a suit of armour, do that live video at the exhibition, message that history podcast host for a guest spot. And, after you’ve done it reflect on how it felt. Did it exhaust you or did it give you energy?

Three: Know the bigger picture

Sometimes we get lost in processes, features and activities and drift away from the purpose of what we’re doing. The deeper source of your drive will be personal but here are some possibilities:

  • “I want to be able to quit my day-job and work for myself”
  • “I want to be a full-time writer”
  • “I want to be able to quit my job and be at home more with my kids”
  • “I want to be an influencer”
  • “I want to build my CV to get my dream job in the Victoria & Albert Museum.”

I hope you can see motivation is nothing compared to drive.

Motivation gets you off the couch when you’re tempted to watch The Other Boleyn Girl again.

Drive is something so deep, so personal, so strong that it pulls you off the couch to edge you closer to achieving what you want.

If you’re looking for drive, I want to end with you thinking about this statement:

If the ‘why’ is strong enough the ‘how’ will reveal itself

Steven Covey

So, make it personal and I wish you luck as you discover your drive or purpose for your history blog.

If you would like to learn even more ways to grow your history blog please check out my course Time-Smart History Blogging. It’s six modules packed with strategies and actionable tips to help you build your dream history blog with minimal stress and time-wasting.

Elizabeth Hill-Scott

Elizabeth Hill-Scott teaches entrepreneurs and bloggers who want to start, grow and monetise a successful niche blog in the fascinating field of history. She is also a post-graduate and communications expert who spent over 15 years advising senior UK politicians and public figures.