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Three Words that are Killing Your Blog


A few months ago, my mother started blogging.

To put things in context, until this point, my parents still had dial-up Internet, and my mom would log on once or twice a week, tops, to check her email, print coupons, or look for a recipe. She doesn’t have a smart phone. She doesn’t have an e-reader or tablet. My mom’s interests in life have very little to do with the Internet.

So, asking her to start blogging with me and my sister wasn’t an easy sell. But she’s doing it, and I think she’s rocking as a beginner. It’s all because we encouraged her to banish three words from her vocabulary.

Although no study has been done (that I know of at least), I suspect that these three words account for more blogging failure than just about anything else. You can overcome a lot of blogging problems, but not if you allow these three words to rule you. Even if you’re finding success as a blogger, these three words can hold you back from being even more successful.

These three words are: I. Don’t. Know.

When you’re faced with a challenge, you have two options: you can face the challenge or you can quit. Way too often we use the excuse, “But I don’t know how to do that…” as a reason to justify giving up. The truth is, you can learn how to do just about anything if you really want to.

Sometimes, you’ll need help, Googling the problem. But in both cases, success starts with believing that you can solve the problem.

Think about any skill you have, anything you know how to do. At some point in your life, you were a beginner. You aren’t anymore, simply because you didn’t let “I don’t know…” be an excuse.

When you own your own blog, you have to wear many hats. You have to be a writer and a marketer and a community manager. You have to deal with tech problems and customer problems. You have to care about your blog more than anyone else, and you have to be willing to learn. It’s hard work, but the only way you’ll be successful is if you are willing to take on every challenge that comes your way.

So resist the urge to say, “I don’t know…” the next time a problem arises on your blog. Unless, of course, it’s followed by “…but I’m going to find out.”


  • constance khu

    I Recently used those three words today in fact when my hosting company somehow expected me to be too technical for my blog when they should had been the ones solving my problem and yes ‘I did not know’
    But I do agree sometimes we use words as an excuse to get something done

    • Allison

      Yes, I think sometimes we legitimately do not know something – but in this case, even though you didn’t know the answer yourself, you took steps to correct it by finding someone who does know – your hosting company. So I count that as a win! 🙂

  • Michael

    Hi Allison,

    Great post.

    When I saw your title, I was expecting something technical but instead it was these 3 simple words. These 3 words don’t stop us from being successful in blogging but in life as well.

    It was easy way out to say I don’t know and I was used to that until I finally understand nothing will move until I go and find out how to know. So now, when I face with any problem, I often ask myself “how can I do it” and of course, Google help a lot. 🙂

    By the way, kudos to your mom for joining the blogging sphere. 🙂

    • Allison

      I think you’re right about “I don’t know” stopping people in other areas of life as well, not just blogging. It’s definitely a problem I’ve had in the past, but I’ve found that if I kick my own butt, I can usually find a solution. I just have to push myself instead of taking the *tempting* easy route.

      What did people do before Google? Seriously!

      My mom is certainly a trooper. I don’t think she’s 100% sold on blogging yet because she hates doing the typing part, but she’s learning more every day and is doing a fantastic job.

  • DjRelAt7

    It is so easy now a days to look up what you don’t know that there isn’t any reason to give up for not knowing something 🙂

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