Chatterbox: 2015 Commitments

January 9, 2015 by Jeann @ Happy Indulgence | Chatterbox, Features


In 2014, I strived to be a better blogger, grow my blog following, receive ARCs and be more active in the blogging community. I really pushed myself in 2014 for all of these things which far exceeded my expectations, and I’m so proud of what Happy Indulgence has become today.

Although I did manage to achieve a lot last year, it wasn’t without a lot of stress and pressure I put on myself to succeed. There were times I almost reached some blogging slumps, by pressuring myself to respond to comments and visit blogs every day and I even searched for a co-blogger to cope with the expectations. That didn’t pan out too well for me, but I’ve since learnt that I can only do as much as I can and it seems like I still have readers, and I’m still blogging but with a lot less stress, so something must be working.

Now that I’ve built a foundation which I’m happy with, I want to maintain it but also try not to be everything at the same time. While 2014 was a year of growth, 2015 is a year of balance.

I’ll maintain my love of blogging and reading by:

  • giving myself a break from review copies every once in a while and reading what I enjoy
  • writing strong and considered reviews for the books that I read, even the ones that I find difficult
  • maintaining the strong blogger friendships that I’ve made, and also seeking new blogs to love
  • reading more from my most loved genres, including YA fantasy and urban fantasy, instead of current trends
  • finding more opportunities for article contribution and continuing my articles for Brisbane Libraries
  • only purchasing books I will read
  • only requesting review copies that I will read
  • clearing my review pile and hopefully tackling Netgalley

All of these aim to maintain my love for reading and blogging, moving away from the high pressure of constantly churning out content and being 5 bloggers when I’m only 1.

What are your 2015 blogging and reading goals?

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Jeann is an Aussie YA blogger and mum who loves to read and recommend books! You can usually find me fangirling about books on my various social media channels including Twitter @happyindulgence, Instagram and Youtube.

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73 responses to “Chatterbox: 2015 Commitments

  1. These are amazing goals and definitely ones that I have as well! This year, I'm really hoping to build on the relationships I have and to create new ones. I know I don't put enough time into them. >< I also have to cut down on my buying and requesting because I have more books than I can read in a year. D: Best of luck with all your goals Jeann!

  2. I love your goals! I think they are awesome. You have worked hard in 2014 and from the likes of things, it really did pay off. I would like to work harder to make my blog more popular and also change up the design this year. But I have settled a few blogger connections and friends last year that I am very happy with ^.^
    My recent post Gift Guide Tag!

    • Thank you Olivia, making blogger friends and connections will get you far! Good luck with the design and your goals for this year, too.

  3. Those are all marvelous commitments to make to yourself. I struggle with that too. Trying to do what it would take several bloggers to do. I do have occasional reviews contributed by my friends Maggie and Kat but really I'm the blogger obsessed one. I think it works out well that way tho. I don't know about you but seriously ever since I instituted more strict request standards on myself I've been enjoying books and blogging again a woke lot more. Less pressure equals more enjoyment for us !!
    My recent post Review: Firefight by Brandon Sanderson

  4. millicentnankivell

    Hi Jeann! These are good goals you've set yourself for this year 🙂 I think in general, bloggers put way too much pressure on themselves – especially when they're trying to grow their blog and meet the crazy goals they seem to set for themselves. Also, you're not the only one who struggles with keeping up with others blog posts… *flails* Haha! Just quickly trying to catch up on my bloglovin' backlog at the moment, but I thought I'd stop to congratulate you on your achievements and to wish you the best of luck with your new goals! 🙂 xx
    My recent post Help! I Don’t Have an Art Portfolio!

  5. Happy Indulgence is an amazing blog and you are an amazing blogger, so you should be very proud of yourself, Jeann! <3

    As for your goals, I think they are great and if I did have goals (I am bad at expecting things of myself, haha), they would pretty much be the same! I get really stressed if I don't keep up with all the aspects of blogging, but that's not what it should be about. Blogging should happen when AND make you happy – I think that's the most important part.

    I've been working on getting my NG ratio back up this year, and It's nearly at 80% Hopefully it will be 100% by the end of the year 😀 I hope we can both do it!

    Good luck with your goals, lovely ;D
    My recent post No More Books (kind of)

  6. Faye M.

    I agree with you, 2015 should be a year of balance. I noticed that everyone is so burned out by blogging and I'm seeing more and more and more blogs quit because of the stress. Both of us have a "foundation" already and I think it's high time for us to finally enjoy the fruits of our success! <3 <3 Love you, Jeann, you did great in 2014 and I'm sure you'll so even better this year!
    My recent post Potato Prints #5: Harry Potter, Throne of Glass

    • I\’ve seen so many bloggers quit and it\’s just a shame, because I could fully emphasise with them and I understand that it can get too much. I love blogging and you guys too much to quit, so the only way to cope is to make it work with balance. I totally agree Faye, I\’m so thankful to have a blogging friend like you <3 love you too hun, let\'s have an awesome 2015 together.

  7. Good for you! I'm happy that your blogging experience has bettered after some stressful times last year. I've been pretty good lately about not being too stressed about posting and book reviews but it's taken forever to do so.
    I really like your list of how you'll maintain your love of blogging and reading. It's a good reminder to me too that I need to take certain steps or precautions to enjoy reading and blogging more. I hope 2015 is a great bookish and bloggish year for you.
    My recent post Bout of Books #12: Wrap-Up

    • Thank you Adriana, I\’m glad it\’s gotten off to a good start to and I hope this will remind others to do the same!

  8. Yeah, reading more of the books I own and have bought rather than mostly ARCs is on my list of things I want to be able to do in 2015, too, Jeann! I am very bad at requesting books, though, even when I only request those I really want to read – but I have a good percentage at Netgalley, so I'm not going to feel bad about it.
    I think it's really important to take breaks every now and then, and I also think that the strong friendships we forge in the blogging community helps us to continue being passionate about books and our blogs.
    Great post, Jeann. Have a fantastic week and happy reading.

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews
    My recent post Blogtour Review: The Body Electric – Beth Revis

  9. Good goals Jeann! I think you already work hard enough (especially in 2014), so definitely don't overdo it! YOU CAN DO IT. Commenting back is really hard, I don't even have as many comments as you do but I still wait a week or so before tackling them. I can't imagine how you do it!

    I wish you the best of luck for 2015!
    My recent post Review: Blue Lily, Lily Blue

  10. I agree with your goals, Jeann, especially "maintaining the strong blogger friendships that I’ve made, and also seeking new blogs to love." This year I hope to chat more with the bloggers I already know (like you!), and to go snooping around for new bloggers to stalk. ^_^

    I do hope 2015's going to be a less stressful year for you. Good luck! <33
    My recent post Review: Perfect Couple by Jennifer Echols

    • Thank you Aimee, as bloggers it's important to socialise with each other and I hope we can continue to do that this year <3

  11. Yay for new commitments! You have a lovely blog, and I can tell you pub lots of time and effort into building it to be as wonderful as it is. Great commitments, I need to request less arcs too, and only buying what you will read is always a good goal 🙂 I've reached 100% ratio on NG this week, I feel so empowered right now xD Reading more fantasy is always fun. Good luck, you've got this hon <33
    My recent post Stacking the Shelves (11) ~ I Won, Received, And Was Gifted Stuff!

    • Thank you Rachel, I really appreciate your lovely words. WOW you got to 100%, that is a celebration in itself! Thank you lovely <3

  12. JEANNNNN!!!! Wonderful commitments list I must say. I think I will be doing a lot of the same things, especially clearing up my netgalley list ha! Seeing my ratio compared to everyone elses during the Secret Santa blog hop made me cringe. A lot. I must catch up!!! 😛

  13. It's amazing the pressure we put on ourselves when it comes to blogging. I used to be the same, then in the second half of 2014, I thought eff it and starting doing my own thing. The one thing that made a difference with me was to not read unsolicited review copies that I wouldn't have purchased myself. I found some just weren't my thing and dragged me into book slumps. And requesting no more than 2 books per month. I only request ARC's mainly when I do request, if it's something that's already out, I buy it. Then I can review it whenever I want to and not have that added pressure. Just learning to take mini breaks when it gets all too much works wonders too.

    With comments, I'm not only returning comments left on posts on my front page otherwise it gets tedious. Brilliant goals and super achievable too Jeann. good luck, I'll be cheering you on from the sidelines with my whip at the read.

    *Whickchoo* yeah, that was supposed to be a whip being cracked.
    I know, I know, it was shithouse. I'll work on it 😀
    My recent post The Vanishing by Kate Kae Myers

    • I know right, I think we both went through it at a similar time. A good idea about those unsolicited review copies, I was always focused on reading the ones I requested but then it would all get muddled with the ones I got. That's a good idea to limit how much we can handle as well because less obligations, less stress. Good idea with the comments as well Kelly, it seems like we've both learnt a few tactics to cope and we're already starting off to a great start. Let's support each other in 2015! I'll be here with my own whip 😉

  14. Bec

    You are a blogging machine, Jeann! A lot of your goals are things I do to help maintain my love for blogging. Stick to the things you like and love and it will all work out fine! And take breaks. Little breaks are necessary to stay sane.

    I hope you achieve all your goals! And even if you're taking a more relaxed approach I bet you'll still churn out a crazy (and awe inspiring) amount of content and I look forward to reading it all!
    My recent post Review: Of Scars and Stardust – Andrea Hannah

    • Thank you so much Bec for your supportive words! Definitely stick to the things I love and not pressure myself so much.

  15. It's SO HARD to maintain a balance with blogging! From real life to ARCs to visiting and commenting, it takes up so much time. And it's a huge commitment. I hope your 2015 is better than last year! And I hope you're able to find that balance, because blogging should be fun and wonderful, not stressful. 🙂
    My recent post Review: Damsel Distressed by Kelsey Macke

  16. karawrites15

    These are all such fantastic goals, Jeann! Good luck with them all. 🙂 I really need to tackle my Netgalley review copies! At the moment I am quite pleased with my 81% feedback ratio, however there are some books I've read but haven't had the time to review just yet! Hope you have a wonderful 2015. 🙂 🙂
    My recent post Friday Photography (7)

    • I'd love to see you talk about other stuff as well Braine! I mean it's your blog, you should do whatever you want with it.

    • Thank you Cyn, it is really hard to stop the book hoarding isn't it? I definitely want to read more of my most loved genres. I can't wait to see your diversity in your reading too! Good luck to you!

  17. These are great goals, Jeann. I love the buying books that you only meant to read. I think I've started on the wrong foot this year, but I'm making the same commitment from here on. I would also like to be a bit more noticeable to publishers, but I haven't quite figured out how to do that.

    Good luck, hun!

    • Thank you Joy, I have SO many books on my shelf that I've forgotten about and need to rediscover! You really do have to email the publishers in your local area to request to be on their review lists I think.

  18. Great goals! I'm also working to improve on my blog this year, so good luck to us both!

    If you don't mind me asking, how do you get so many ARC's? I've been trying to get more involved in the book blogging community but I feel like I just have one foot in the door, hahah! I've requested books from LibraryThing many times but since it's random I'm never picked. I also keep an eye on book publisher blogs which helps sometimes 🙂

    My recent post If My Blog Was an Outfit

    • Thank you lovely, definitely shouldn't be feeling that way! Oh man, I've found the best way is just not to go on NG or EW lol

  19. Maintaining my blogger friendships and strengthen the ones I have is something I'm planning to do. It's the reason why I love blogging so much. I'm also cutting down on requesting/downloading, because it was too much last year. Great resolutions and good luck :)!

    • Glad to hear Mel, I love blogging for that reason as well! And yes, definitely staying off NG and EW for now. Thank you!

  20. booksbonesbuffy

    I've noticed a lot of bloggers are in the same boat this year, and have hit slumps and just over extended themselves in general, and of course I'm including myself in that! I've also become overwhelmed with review commitments, and sometimes I forget what it's like to just read a book for pleasure. Here's hoping we can all achieve balance this year, good luck Jeann!
    My recent post Waiting on Wednesday [132] THE EXILE by C.T. Adams

    • I think so, it's easy to get caught up and overwhelmed in it all isn't it? We have to remember that we're just one person! Thank you Tammy, good luck to you as well!

  21. "only requesting review copies that I will read" Yes to this. 😛

    Well, I've listed a few "resolutions" on my blog as well, but I think my number one goal would be to widen my genres. I am a contemporary romance type of gal and I started with fantasy, with romance of course. 🙂 I will also try on posting again, monthly, so that my blog won't look like a deserted house. :p
    My recent post Hello 2015!

  22. I think as goals go, all I really want is to be more social in the community. Sometimes I become a bit of a lurker and read and then leave and that sucks, because how can anyone know that I really care about they're doing that way? So I'm trying to be more social that way, and I'm trying to just be more planned, I have spreadsheets and an order of things and when I need to, I can go by feel in there, so it's not too bad. Great plans Jeann, hopefully they turn out well 😀
    My recent post Bookish Musings – Amanda's Reading Challenges (2015)

    • Being social is the best fun Amanda, I think you'll have a blast meeting new bloggers and having discussions with them! Glad to hear you're getting organised with your planning too. Thank you!

  23. These are fantastic goals, Jeann! I feel like I'm doing pretty decently at keeping balance but I need to find the time to bring back Ink & Batter more regularly to the blog, and finally deal with the Netgalley backlog!
    My recent post Waiting On Wednesday #76!!

  24. I think 2014 was a balance year for me because I had just started blogging and I was trying to figure out how to balance blogging with everything else. I'm still trying to figure it all out, but I think this year I'm striving more towards growth. I would like to request a review copy, interview some authors, and blog more consistently. That means scheduling posts, which I'm doing pretty good at so far.
    My recent post Beautiful People: In Which You Get to Hear All About My Writerly Habits

    • I can see what you mean Ana, starting blogging is very exciting and it's easy to get consumed by it all at the start. Glad to hear you are getting off to a good start! The scheduling is a must.

  25. YES 2015 IS A YEAR OF BALANCE. I AM WITH YOU, JEANN. I need to learn how to do that asap. No negotiations.

    Definitely read more of what you enjoy Jeann! In fact, I'm just saying that because all of Jan and the end of Dec, I've just been letting myself enjoy what I want to read mwahaha But eh, it's all biting me in the arse now LOL And only purchasing books that I'll actually read. Yes. I need to learn that.

    My recent post Are We Reviewers Just Bad At Maths?

    • I'm so glad you're on board with it Jess! Let us help each other together! I have blasted the review reads and sometimes it's easy to get into a slump or annoyed at reading the same things all the time, so it'd definitely be healthier for reviewing too!

  26. Cynthia

    Great goals! I am trying to complete some challenges and read 100 books this year. I would also like to just read what I enjoy and mark more books (even review copies) as DNF if I am just not feeling them.
    My recent post BOOK REVIEW: You: A Novel

  27. These are some fantastic goals, Jeann. You surely have accomplished a lot over the past year and I do hope you have a less stressful year this year in terms of blogging. I used to have those moments but I think it's sometimes good to just remind yourself to never make blogging a chore xD

    Here's to an amazing 2015! <33

  28. Bec Graham

    Now that is a great New Year's Resolution! Definitely do what makes you happy when it comes to your blog! That's what makes it fun 🙂
    Hope your 2015 is off to a good start!

  29. These are exceptionally wise goals Jeann! *nods* I approve. I would like to think 2015 would be a calmer year for me….I'm already behind on comments and visiting blogs and gah. That's not an okay way to start the year! I'm not really sure how to tackle that problem though (besides from actually blogging less so I have more time to network, but I love writing posts, so I don't want to cave to that quite yet. BUT WE SHALL SEE.) I aim to read ALL the books I own! Hehe. And also read older books…I get all caught up with the newbies and forget there are older gems out there too!
    My recent post Doesn’t Everyone Love Magnus Bane?

    • Thank you Cait! I totally know what you mean about being calm lol, it's easy to get excited and wanting to do everything at once, but alas, we are only one person! I LOVE writing posts as well and reviews, so if we focus on that then we have to accept that we can't comment on ALL THE BLOGS and everything.
      My recent post Chatterbox: 2015 Commitments