Starting a Blog in a Recession: How to Do it and What you Need to Know

I first published the below article five years ago – back then it was titled How I Quit My Job to Become a Blogger.

Every word of it is as true now in 2022 (and going into 2023) as it was in 2018.

Working from home is perhaps MORE possible than ever now, one of the few positive changes to come out of the “pandemic era” – in my opinion.

There is still SO much potential for those want to create their own job freedom, and as we hear more and more rumors of massive recession… maybe there is more NEED than ever, also.

One of my good friends in this blogging space has been making money online as a blogger since 2009 (wayyyy before me!) – and she told me once she started because of recession. 

I can imagine a lot more people starting blogs this coming year for the same reason.

And it still works – it’s still a real way to create your own job. (Not overnight, no, but over time. It takes around a year for most blogs to find their legs.)

Starting a blog in a recession is the same as starting a blog any other time – it has the same requirements, the same steps… and the same potential, which is perhaps the most amazing part of all this.

So to answer the question – “should you start a blog in a recession?” – the easy answer is “YES”… but the longer answer is that you need to know that blogging won’t be immediate income, so you should start your blog with plans for it to become an income over the course of a year or so.

(THIS POST PROBABLY CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. OUR FULL DISCLOSURE POLICY IS REALLY BORING, BUT YOU CAN FIND IT HERE.)

Now, on with the important stuff, this is the story of how I quit my job to be a blogger:

Ever think about quitting your day job?

I’m almost sure you do!

Never waking up again at 6 am to commute, never again worrying more about someone else’s bottom line, never missing another one of your baby’s firsts… never (ever) smiling like you mean it (but really, really, not meaning it) – when you’d rather just flat out punch the guy in the throat? (I worked in customer service. Can you tell?)

Or maybe your dream is throwing your laptop in a bag and getting on the next plane – working from the beach with a margarita in hand…

I’d be willing to bet MOST of us have at least thought about it.

But you’re a responsible person. You have bills to pay, and you’re smarter than to think you can chase some pipe dream all the way to the bank. You’re gonna put in your time and do what needs to be done to make sure you’re making a decent enough living.

That’s what grown-ups do.

I get it… ‘cus I’m that way too.

No really, I really am that way – when it comes to living the dream, I am a hard sell; I am a skeptic.

But I am also a success story.

Six years ago, I was in a very different place in my life.

Here’s the abbreviated version:

I was settling in as a receptionist (at a job I loved, but didn’t make a killing at), after 10 years of terrible customer service work (at a job I hated, but made decent money at).

I was ready to accept the pay decrease to finally be happy.

About three months in, we found out I was pregnant. (Not unplanned, but still unexpected. We had been trying for a long time, and I was giving up on the idea of becoming a mom. Praise God for His many blessings ♥.)

It didn’t take me more than 5 minutes to decided that if we were finally going to have a baby, then I was going to raise the baby – not pay some strangers to do it for me. (This is not a slight against working moms – this is what I wanted for me and my family.  I want to be the one there with my baby, day in and day out.)

But, I had no idea how I was going to do that. (Like none. It was blank inside my head.)

I had tried and tried over the years to figure out how to quit my job and work from home – as a travel agent, as a photographer, as a “crafter” (yes that’s a real thing). I had started a blog on a whim once… and given it about two weeks of “effort” before I abandoned it. I had considered transcription. But none of those things were working for me. They all felt a little like wading through waist deep mud – maybe this is why I am a skeptic?

Maybe these experiences had “proven” to me that working from home is a pipe dream? (Baffling, because both my parents work from home. I’ve seen it done!)

But this time, there was a reason bigger than just me not wanting to go to work

This time, I wanted to make working from home real for myself more than I wanted anything else in the world. 

I had no idea where to start, what steps to take, how to make it happen.

Then a little voice inside my head said  “You love to write – there has to be a way you can write”!

That first “start my blog” experience I had was pretty scarring.

I wasted 70 bucks and WordPress had made me feel about 103 years old. (Am I the only 30 year old woman in the western world who never took a single computer class in high school?) So you wouldn’t think blogging would be the thing I would choose to do.

(I honestly can not even tell you why I chose blogging… except that God must have directed me here.)

But this time there was a big glaring difference in how I approached it.

This time, I decided that I would not fail. I decided to be all in.

I did a.l.o.t. of research. I realized that if you want to do make money at something, you need to LEARN to do it RIGHT.

There are no practicing Doctors out there who didn’t graduate from medical school, no lawyers who haven’t passed the bar. Getting an education in what you want to do is usually necessary. So I invested a decent chunk of change into a blogging course.

And then I worked.

I quit watching TV, quit surfing Facebook, quit shopping and cooking and showering and sleeping. I worked 50+ hours per week on the blog, while still working my desk job 4 days per week. (I was on a baby imposed deadline. It probably doesn’t have to be quite this intense – HA.)

I put in the time. (And the tears, and more money. Yes, it cost me money.) And it just started to come together.

One year later, I was making a full time income from blogging. (You can read my income reports here.) I will not be returning to a desk job (or any job). I am raising my baby and working for myself from home.

(If I didn’t have kids, I could be working for myself from anywhere.)

It’s not a pipe dream at all.

Six years in, and blogging is better than ever. The longer I do this, the more I love it. There are ups and downs with my income, sure – but it still beats a “real” job.

And going into a recession, I’m not as concerned about my job as many others are. Will my income go down a but? Almost inevitably, as advertisers pull back their spending.

But will it go away entirely?

Wildly unlikely.

How to quit your job and work from home as a blogger:

First of all, start now.

Just do it. (It really is cheap to get started. Follow this easy, step by step tutorial here.)

There is no time like now. If I hadn’t started six years ago, the time would still have passed. 

Whatever reason you have for not starting, it’s probably not good enough. You are capable – if you decide to be.

I am nothing special.

No, really. That’s not a self-esteem “issue” statement – I’m a pretty confident lady – it’s just a fact. I have no education, no special talents, no anything about me that sets me apart from you or from anyone else. I am not more qualified than you. (Maybe I am more determined, but that’s something that you have complete control over!) I just decided to do it, and then I did it. 

As far as the secret to making a full time living BLOGGING in a year or so, I believe it really does come down to a few key things.

I go over HOW to do all these things in more detail in this free course, but in a nutshell:

I’ve put together a FREE course on how to start a blog (and make money) to help you get going in the right direction for profitability. Starting a blog for profit is different than just “starting a blog”, and there are things – important things – that you need to understand to make money blogging. ESPECIALLY if you want to make money quickly. The free course will help you get a solid foundation set up. 

I’m not saying that blogging has to be the thing for you, however.

There are lots of work from home jobs that you can approach the same way I approached blogging – and be just as successful at.

Find your thing and DO YOUR THING.

Choose to make the change. Stop whining about your job and fix your life.

If you’re looking for other work at home suggestions, consider becoming a virtual assistant, or try freelance writing.

I’ve always thought that transcription or proofreading looked like awesome options – more about both of those work from home ideas here.

Just start. And then don’t stop until you succeeded.

Related: Stay at home mom jobs: the ultimate guide to earning an income from home

Does this apply to everyone? Does this apply to you?

Fact of the matter is, if you don’t think it DOES apply to you, then it won’t.

This only applies to you if you let it.

If you are ready to work for yourself, then do it.

Let’s be real. (There’s an awful lot of not real on the internet, and I hope you know you won’t find that stuff here.)

I am not (even though I do joke about it) working from my couch in my jammies. I am putting on pants, and choosing to work when I would rather not. I am spending every free moment I have learning more to improve the way I do what I am doing.

It is hard to work for yourself. It is hard to make something – with your bare hands – that amounts to anything.

If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. 

But here’s the thing. It’s also hard to hate what you do, hate paying some else to raise your kids, hate that you’re trading two hours of sleep every day for two hours on the train.

It might be the path of least resistance, but it’s still hard.

So choose your hard. 

Related: How to Start a Blog and Make Money From Home
Related: 4 Secrets of People Who Successfully Work From Home#blogging #workfromhome #blogger #blog #startablog

HOW TO QUIT YOUR JOB AND WORK FROM HOME AS A BLOGGER

 

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140 thoughts on “Starting a Blog in a Recession: How to Do it and What you Need to Know”

  1. Thanks for the encouragement. When I reach a 1000 page views I will be ecstatic!! I just lost my job this past month, its the kick in the but I need to blog full time. I absolutely love it. Looking forward to when I earn a few dollars from it. Thanks for the tips.

    Reply
    • Amy,
      Remember, it’s a slooooow burn – but you can get there! Good luck!

      Reply
  2. this was such an inspiring post! Thanks for sharing your journey – it’s encouraging and REAL! and that’s much appreciated!
    all the blog love, xo Sara

    Reply
    • Aww thank you for the kind words! I am glad you enjoyed the post.

      Reply
  3. Hi Carly,
    I discovered your blog on Pinterest and have been following your blog posts ever since. Yours is one of the blogs I keep coming back to, whenever I find myself struggling to find inspiration to write.
    It’s really impressive and inspiring how much hard work you have put into building your business.

    This time I’m really determined to make it work and have been working on creating content and increasing my follower base on Pinterest. Your dedication and success inspires me.
    Thank you and god bless!

    Reply
  4. Thank you for your motivating post. I am still working my full time job and trying to blog on the side. The biggest problem for me is overwhelm at everything that needs to be done. I want to help empower women to make a positive change to live up to their potential – which is funny because I am trying to do that myself so I am not there yet. I figure I must start somewhere and if I can bring some people along to take the journey as well, then I have accomplished my mission. So I am trying to learn from other successful bloggers.
    I would love to find a guide that says first do this then this, then this, but not this until later etc. because I end up scattered with my efforts and don’t end up writing new content which I know is key. Keep up the good work Carly

    Reply
    • Joy – I am soooo glad you found my article helpful! It’s okay – we are always a work in progress. As long as you are moving forward you can help others move forward in their journey! Good luck with the blog girl. <3

      Reply
  5. Awesome!! I feel like I was reading about myself! I also tried transcription for about a day. I do it at work so I thought I could do it from home but you literally make $2/hr! 😂 I started my blog 2 months ago and am hoping to make it a full time job because I’d like to be a stay at home mom and want to have a second child semi soon. It killed me going back to work after the first!I have a two year old and work still so it’s really tough trying to put the hours in because I feel like I’m not giving her all the attention she needs. I’m not sure if you’ve had your baby yet, but if you have, I’m wondering if you have any tips on how to work on your blog with a child? My daughter doesnt nap and I work evenings! 😭

    Thanks,
    Jen

    Reply
    • Jen,
      I get it – it is SO hard! There is no easy way to try and blog with babies at home..I just took time during nap and sleep times (when I could) or while my hubby was watching the little ones. The blog was certainly on the back-burner. It also helps to make sure that you remove ALL distractions during your “work time”. Once we open something like FB, getting other things done becomes a lot more difficult LOL.

      Reply
  6. Hi Carly,
    I am also a blogger and while reading your story and how you started your blogging with lots of hurdles, no doubt it has boosted all of us and its really inspiring to all those the great ladies thinking to bring change in their life.
    Blogging is indeed great and interesting platform where one can find lots of opportunity to earn.

    Loved your details that you have shared one after another and believe it your entire story is creating impact.

    Reply
    • Manoj,

      Thank you for taking the time to respond. It’s very encouraging to get comments like this. Good luck with the blog!!!

      Reply
      • Thank you so much for this post! This is super helpful in realizing that it takes time and consistent effort to see true results. The times my blogging efforts were slow-going is when I didn’t devote time to blogging. I love posts like this- examples that it is possible to reach our online business goals.

      • Demetria – yes it IS possible! The most important thing is to keep on going! I wish you the best with everything.

  7. I love your honesty and ‘realness’. Like you I am a skeptic and I also do things “the right way” and as we know it’s the harder way, but too, the best way.
    I have been researching for a few weeks (got on the wait list for eba), but had kinda thought tonight “maybe this isn’t what I’m supposed to be doing”. I just wanted to know you have just reminded me again that this can be possible, but it’s just going to take the work with this article.
    Thank you for being REAL. 🙂

    Reply
    • Jenna – It will take a LOT of work, but you can definitely be successful with blogging. EBA is a fantastic investment and I don’t think you’ll regret it if you go through with it. Good luck with everything!

      Reply
  8. Very inspiring. Thank you so much for sharing. I have signed up for your course and I look forward to learning more. I think blogging is definitely for me!

    Reply
  9. Awesome! This post has been very motivational. Thank you!

    Reply
  10. Thanks Carly. You’ve been such an inspiration. I’m also a part of your Facebook group. I have a blog, it’s a little over a year old now and I am making some money from it. My problem is, I work full-time as a writer for other clients. So, I’m finding it very difficult to make time to actually write for my own blog.

    I’d love nothing more than to just quit my writing job and go ALL IN on my blog full time. That’s my dream. But, of course I’m scared and I’m loyal to my client and don’t want to let her down.

    I know in my heart that if I were to go ALL IN and really make my blog top priority, things would start happening a lot quicker. I just need to make that decision and that leap forward. What do you think? Should I continue spinning my wheels trying to make time to do what I truly love and want to do or do I continue working and building my blog very slowly until I get to a point where I think I can make it without my full-time job?

    Did things happen quickly for you on your blog when you finally just did it exclusively? I know it’s a personal decision and one that I need to weigh out carefully, I just think that I’m letting myself down and letting a great opportunity to better my life slip away because of my loyalty to my client and my fear. I know you can’t give me the answers, but maybe some insight if possible. 🙂

    Thanks!

    Wendy

    Reply
  11. I am so happy I came across this post again. This is the post that got me to start my blog and I can’t thank you enough for writing it. “This time, I decided that I would not fail. I decided to be all in.“ That line stuck with me and I don’t know if I would still be blogging without it. My blog is almost two years old now and it pays my bills. Thank you for this inspiration. It literally changed my life.

    Reply
  12. Hi, Carly same as you I also got the idea of writing a blog because I want to be with my baby. And also I am looking forward to make some money out of it. Your blog is very helpful and informative. Thanks for sharing the ideas.

    Reply
  13. Hey Carly,

    I know you mentioned that blogging is hard. Is the hard part mainly driving traffic? Or is it writing the content?

    Reply
    • It really depends! most people find driving traffic hard, but some people find creating quality content hard as well! It ALL gets easier with time:)

      Reply
  14. Hey Carly,

    Is it even possible to make an income within 3 months of blogging? Or should I just get rid of that mentality?

    Reply
  15. Honestly, I have been really struggling with my blog lately and this post has helped open my eyes so much! I need that mindset of “This time, I will not fail.” It can get discouraging to put so much work and effort (and $$) into something without yielding results. But I know God has called me to help other moms with my blog so that’s what I am trying to focus on. Thank you! 🙂

    Reply
  16. I was the same way! I started a blog last year and quickly abandoned it as well because it was just so dang hard to get through that learning curve! But when we found ourselves in a hard spot financially, God reminded me that He wanted me to use my talent of writing to bless other people. So I purchased a course and started again! I related to this story so much. Thank you for telling it. 🙂

    Reply

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