How One Couple Drastically Changed Their Life by Blogging

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How blogging changed one average American couple's life / problogger.net.This is a guest contribution from Gina Horkey.

Two years ago, my husband and I were just like any other American couple.

We were both working in Corporate America, had a one and a half year old and another on the way. Our work schedules and commutes weren’t bad, we just weren’t doing work that we were passionate about.

Someone else was also raising our child. It could have been much worse – our son was maybe in daycare for 30 hours per week. And the provider was great! It just wasn’t what we wanted. Plus, with another on the way, daycare was about to get real expensive!

Since I’m not one to sit back and accept less-than-ideal circumstances, we decided to make some changes. Here’s our story of going from a dual income, Corporate America household, to a single earning one dependent on just my freelancing income. Buckle up!

Finding a Better Solution

Even though I was a financial advisor, we never thought it’d be possible for one of us to quit work and stay at home with our growing family. After a couple failed nanny attempts and the end of my pregnancy looming, we got desperate and finally entertained the idea.

My husband had always expressed interest in becoming a SAHD and my career was more promising at the time, so we set out to see if it was possible for him, the carrier of all benefits to quit.

By significantly cutting our expenses (cutting cable, reducing our dining out, raising our insurance deductibles, stopping our retirement savings, etc) we were just able to make it work!

Thank goodness we had the good sense to pay-off most of our debt the year or two before.

Fast Forward a Year

Our second child was going on a year old and Wade was enjoying staying at home. All should be well then, right?

Wrong. It should have been.

But I couldn’t help to acknowledge the growing discontent I was experiencing with my work. My clients were great and so were my colleagues. I just didn’t really enjoy talking and reading about investing, tax law or compliance all day long.

I tried to throw myself further into my career by enrolling in an accredited program and pitching a plan to buy into the larger practice. I began studying and we began talks to make it happen.

But then I realized it wasn’t what I really wanted. And I actually listened to myself for once.

Starting a Freelance Writing Side Hustle

So, I did what any other “normal” person did and turned to the world wide internet!

I explored my passions, my available options and started freelance writing on the side a little over a year ago. I secured an unpaid contributorship with The Huffington Post, got some samples by guest posting elsewhere and started my own blog.

I would get up every weekday morning at 4:30 and write for an hour or two before my family woke up and I had to get ready for work. I also had a four-day workweek at the time, so I used Fridays to work on my writing business as well.

I even hired a babysitter from time to time on the weekend to give Wade a break and get some time-sensitive client work done. It was fun, I saw the potential and I was committed to taking charge of my own career future.

All of my hard work and perseverance started to pay off. My income grew month-over-month and I figured out I really enjoyed this world of freelance. I had blogged socially for years, but this was the first time I was treating blogging like a business and reaping the financial rewards.

Putting In My Notice

Eventually things came to a head at work. I opened up about my freelance success and that I had changed my mind about what I wanted for my career future.

I was super nervous about it, but the conversation went better than I had expected. I had been an advisor for almost a decade at this point and with this particular practice for six years. We had a great relationship and I considered them almost like family. But it was hard to disappoint a father-figure!

Due to our great mutual respect, we worked out a plan for them to buy my small practice, for us to find my replacement (for the support duties I performed for the office) and that I’d have a long transition schedule to both train in said replacement and continue to build up my freelance career into a viable business that would support my family.

Becoming a Full-time Freelancer

Right around Christmas, 2014 I had my last day of work. I was now officially a full-time freelancer!

It was exhilarating and a bit frightening all at once. But now, six months later, I can happily say that I made the right decision.

I may work more than ever, but it’s work that I’m passionate about (I write, am a virtual assistant, coach newbie freelance writers and have a course to help aspiring writers for the web launch their own business in as little as 30 days). We also own our schedule, our time and choose how we get to spend it.

Better yet, we choose WHO we get to spend it with.

In Conclusion

Blogging changed our life.

We now decide our schedule, rather than our Corporate America jobs dictating it.

For us, it’s not about being rich or continuing to earn more money – it’s about defining and living out our own priorities, which just so happens to include spending as much time as we can raising our own children.

Want to know my favorite part of each workday now? Coming in for lunch with my family and laying my two toddlers down for their naps. I never would have been able to do that a year ago!

How would your life look different if you felt empowered to make big changes?
Gina Horkey is a writer for hire, with a background in personal finance. She also offers coaching services and really enjoys helping other freelancers gear up to quit their day jobs and take their side hustles full-time. Please stop by Horkey HandBook and say hello and download a free copy of 8 Tips to Start Your Freelance Career off on the Right Foot!

Originally at: Blog Tips at ProBlogger
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How One Couple Drastically Changed Their Life by Blogging

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The Story of an Unlikely Couple – SEO and Translation

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The Story of an Unlikely Couple – SEO and Translation

An Unlikely CoupleThis is the story of two individuals, who are very important and are very successful on their own. They are quite happy to work independently, produce some great results and for a long time have struggled to see why they should have any interest in each other. However, one day they were brought together and a new, prosperous relationship was born. So let me introduce them to you.

First, meet translation. He has been on the scene for a long time and is very versatile. He works with any type of sector and any type of content, traditionally with offline content but he has embraced the web and helped many a business expand their web pages to multiple languages.

Then we have SEO. She is a bit younger than translation and is all about online. Her focus is helping businesses all over the world get their content found by a relevant audience.

Translation and SEO have worked with many of the same people over the years, one after the other and their combined efforts have resulted in increased revenues and profits for those connections.

Then one day…..

Upon walking into meet with a client, both SEO and Translation were surprised to see each other. Have I got the time wrong, they both wondered, as surely we shouldn’t both be here, together!

It became apparent that the meeting was intentional and both tried to hide their bemusement of why this would be, as the client began to explain…… “We have customers all over the world and we want to reach them in their language, through the internet, as we know that’s the way they are most likely to try and find our type of product and where they want to buy it. So we need to have it translated into our target languages and optimised for SEO”.

“Great”, said Translation. “I’ll get working on the language content and then you can let SEO do her bit once they are done”. He assumed the client must be busy, so couldn’t spare the time for two meetings and started to get ready to leave.

“Actually”, interrupted the client, “I was hoping we could do it a bit differently this time. While you are both very efficient and I’ve heard you do a great job, I want to get these websites up and running soon. And while I can launch them as soon as I have the translation, without SEO people won’t find it when they search and I won’t get the traffic I need to make sales.”

He continued, “As well as costing me time, it will also cost me more money. SEO will end up making changes to the pages, so we’re almost doing the same work twice.”

But this is how it works!

Translation and SEO looked at each other now, not really sure what to say. SEO piped up, “But this is how it works –we translate and then optimise. How else should we do it?” “You’ll find a way”, said the client, before he promptly left. Translation and SEO were left wondering what had just happened, and if the old chap had lost his mind.

They left together, thinking that this had been a wasted journey but as they walked, they began chatting – at first almost laughing at the suggestion but as the conversation continued, it turned to possible solutions for the apparently impossible task……

SEO and Translation - FriendsWeeks later….

Translation and SEO no longer work at home alone. They sit together; to enable them to work together on projects to create quality multilingual content that ranks high in global search engines and appeals to a relevant online audience. Combining the expertise of SEO in understanding keywords and online behaviour and Translation in writing accurate, high-quality content that flows and projects the appropriate message, the resultant SEO Friendly Translation or SEO-Localisation is more cost and time efficient for the client and a great experience for the user.

The Moral of the Story

Any good story should have a moral, and in this case, it’s a simple one. It’s like Peanut Butter and Jam (or Jelly). It doesn’t sound like it should go together and many of us would not even consider even trying it, but there are many who will tell you after eating it that it’s a perfect combination. Don’t just assume that two different elements, like SEO and Translation, must stay siloed and that each works better on its own. You may be surprised by the results, and efficiencies mixing the two can bring.

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Gemma Birch has been working in international search since 2007 and leads WebCertain’s marketing team. She is responsible for managing WebCertain’s online marketing activities around the world as well as organising and programming the International Search Summit.

State of Digital

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