I wrote the first draft of this post at the beginning of 2012 as an experiment - to see if I could keep my blog active long enough to actually warrant posting this.

I started blogging about professional topics mostly for selfish reasons. My goals were primarily to improve my creating writing skills and develop a public professional profile. This is actually my fourth attempt at a blog. The previous three attempts failed as I couldn’t think of topics to write about. This blog is my most successful measured by the number of posts. (Coincidentally, it is also by far the most successful in terms of number of visitors.) So what gave me ideas for topics that I didn’t have before?

Early on, I read two pieces of advice, and these generated the majority of the topics on this blog.

The first piece of advice should be obvious, but it is worth repeating. We are all constant learners in life. Whether a beginner or expert, that learning is a vast source of topics. The struggles (and mistakes) you have as a beginner are valuable to another beginner, perhaps even more so than to an expert. Indeed, when I am learning a new topic, I often find information from experts incomprehensible. Besides teaching other people, writing what I am learning improves my understanding, as I have to figure out how to explain what I have learned.

The second one is somewhat more cryptic, but perhaps even more useful. Start listening to every question you get, whether by phone, email, or in person, use those questions as the source of topics. It’s as simple as that.

The results of following this advice are astounding. Over the past year, I’ve written about 50 public blog posts, and a further 70 posts internally at my workplace. That’s a grand total of 120 posts this year. With some big changes coming in my life, next year should be a fruitful learning experience full of blog ideas.