Darren Hickling

Starting Strong

Published onReading time2 minutes

You might have have noticed that the new home of my blog looks very different, and hopefully agree it's a big improvement. That's because I made a big mistake last time: I didn't start strong. New projects are always undertaken with the best of intentions. With my blog, the idea was, and still is, to share updates with friends and family, and increasingly showcase personal work. One of my initial plans was to create a theme for the site, and blog its progress through to completion. The trouble is, I didn't! Work stopped abruptly, and by the time I got around to allocating time to finishing it, I decided otherwise.

That meant I'd hosted a blog of less than ten posts with a bare theme for around two years. It's difficult enough to find the time to spend with friends and family, so when they do decide to invest time reading my updates, I couldn't help wondering if they felt short-changed. I did adopt the new, stock WordPress theme last year, but was left wanting a little more, so purchased an annual subscription to Elegant Themes. I'm keen to get this new site off to a strong start, you to enjoy the content, engage with it where possible, and come away with the feeling that I care about your time.

[Interestingly, another way of starting strong is reeling in readers with a great opening sentence or two. As my blog starts to swell, I'll dedicate more effort to improving those, and the headlines, especially as they are the only content shown in shared links on social networks!]

Using the work of others in this context isn't cheating, it's a happy compromise. I need to focus my efforts elsewhere, my subscription will help a (clearly) talented team, and you, the reader, benefit. Time is a precious commodity, and knowing where and when to use it is a skill I'm trying to improve, such as increasingly practising techniques from Getting Things Done.

Thoughts and advice are very welcome, thanks for reading.