Blogging Lesson Hatched While Playing Angry Birds

October 30, 2015
 / 45 comments

blogging lesson

Recently, while playing a video game with my two kids…a blogging lesson hatched.

My son wanted me to start on level 4 of the Easter Eggs Angry Birds game, which turned out to be a particularly tough level to beat (at least for someone like me who doesn’t play much.)

I tried to destroy those piggies 12 to 15 times, without success. Several times I only had one piggy left–yet I couldn’t finish the job.

This level seemed tougher than usual.

Finally, an idea came to me that quickly turned into “a teachable moment” for my two tykes.

Here’s the blogging breakthrough I learned from Angry Birds!

This Blogging Lesson Turned Those Piggies Into Bacon

“Let me ask you a question”, I said in a fatherly tone, “When you do the same thing over and over again and you don’t get the results you want, what should you do?”

My six-year-old boy quickly responded, “You don’t give up, you keep going.”

“That’s a good answer, but not what I’m looking for.”

My four-year-old daughter chimed in next, basically echoing the perseverance answer (I was proud my little ones answered this way.)

“Here’s what I’m thinking,” I said. “When you keep doing the same thing over and over but never get the results you want, you need to do something different.”

Focusing their attention back on the television screen, I held up the remote, considered my game strategy with the first bird waiting in the sling shot, aimed at a completely different location of the piggy fortress, then released the blue jay.

Destruction ensued!

You see, I had been sending the first bird sailing into the same target area time and time again. This go around, I did something different and launched it into a completely different spot.

This provided a breakthrough that opened up a whole new strategy in the game. Red, Chuck and Bomb (Angry Bird characters) followed, and they were thrown differently as well.

Low and behold, I conquered this level on the first try.

My kids squealed!

Daddy is victorious!

I couldn’t help but smile at how smooth this teachable moment worked out. They aren’t blogging just yet, but this little lesson works for anything in life.

I hope they got the message.

What About You?

Perhaps you are frustrated about the level you’re at now in your blogging…if so, when was the last time you did something different?

Consider your routine, your common practices (or lack of them). Take an honest look at what you’ve been doing…why are you blogging that way?

You know that meme about insanity, right? “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”

How I Stopped the Insanity

One personal example I can share involves the content I was producing here early on.

Awhile back (a year or so), when I was creating blog posts, I would choose topics and craft the posts in ways that did not have the actual Build Your Own Blog audience in mind.

I was blogging to impress two audiences that were not my actual customers…My first intent back then was to impress my peers in the digital marketing field. People who already knew a lot about blogging, copywriting and marketing.

The other “person” I was trying to seduce was the Google algorithm. She turned out to be a cruel and fickle fan, indeed.

Neither of these two audiences were interested in buying what I offered, so I was wasting my time trying to keep up with the Jones’s when I should have been serving my true audience.

That’s an easy trap to fall into.

Once I figured this out, I did something different. I started writing posts and producing videos that YOU wanted.

Heck, you NEEDED them.

Early on, I wasn’t listening close enough to the feedback you were giving me because I was focused on impressing the wrong people (and bots).

Making the change to blogging for YOU has made a huge difference.

(For those who have followed me awhile and stuck around, thank you.)

Things You Can Change to Help Your Blog

Maybe you’re not sure right now what you can or should change to improve your blogging results?

Here’s a list of changes to consider that might provide a huge breakthrough for you…

13 Changes a New Blogger Can Make to Gain More Readers

•A new Logo (or maybe you need one to begin with)
Your Branding in general
Your website Design
Discovering new features to utilize with WordPress
Paying attention to Analytics
Starting an email list
Choosing a better Host or Domain
Start using Video
Make better use of your Time
Start using Keywords
Network with other bloggers
Use better Photos on your blog
Write more clearly, concisely and more compellingly

Time to Do Something Different

Doing something different can apply to anything. Sometimes a more subtle change will do the trick. Like,

•writing longer (or shorter) posts
•Sharing other bloggers content and leaving comments on other blogs
•Telling more stories, fewer statistics
•Using humor in your writing
•Asking people to share your posts
•Finding time to write every day (or cut down your frequency)

What Changes Do You Need to Make? Did this post bring any ideas to mind? If you know you need to do something different to take your blog to a new level, let’s talk about it in the comments. I’ll be around to answer any questions you have.

 

Photo Credit: Angry Birds Space 15 by Themeplus  CC BY-SA 2.0 

Author Bio:

Matthew Kaboomis Loomis is the owner of Build Your Own Blog. Connect with him on Google+ and Twitter

45 comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Rebel Without A Pause says:    •   4 years

    Well done, dad. It’s not often I am smarter than the united force of my six-year-old son and five-year-old daughter – I know those moments are to be cherished. Huzzah!

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Ha ha, that’s so true! Definitely cherish those moments. 🙂

  2. Tiffany says:    •   4 years

    *Taps on shoulder*

    Hey, Matt and fellow bloggers,

    I also play games like Angry Birds or The Simpsons: Tapped Out game when I’m not blogging or working on my various writing projects. It helps relax my mind when I am hit with a case of writers block. I find the Angry Birds/doing things differently makes sense in a way. I changed the appearance of my blog so that it can attract more visitors and I’m working on changing my writing style a little bit so that readers won’t grow tired of me. 🙂

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Tiffany,

      There’s something cathartic about Angry Birds…sounds like the “doing something different” principle is working for you! That’s great!

      Two good examples there–website design and writing style. Boom! Those two changes can be quite powerful!

      Keep me posted.

      Matthew

  3. Tiffany says:    •   4 years

    Hi, Matt,
    I agree that there’s something cathartic about Angry Birds and it’s quite refreshing to do something different haha. I will definitely keep you posted on the whole writing style change that I’m trying to work out. 🙂

  4. Eric Black says:    •   4 years

    Good stuff!! I’ve been in that exact position too many times. (Both with Angry Birds and Writing)
    Change is a good thing!

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Eric,

      Thanks for the feedback. Good to hear you enjoyed this.
      We can so easily get stuck in a rut doing the same thing again and again. Even if it worked for awhile, sometimes it stops working and we must do something different.

      Great to see you here,

      Matthew

  5. Rita Lorraine says:    •   4 years

    *Tap, tap, tap!*

    Hi Matthew and Everyone,
    When I need to escape from writing for a while, I go to a duck pond very near me and watch the ducks play in the water, line up to cross the street, and chase the little dogs that people bring with them to the pond. This eases my mind and actually helps me get back into the writing mood.

    I changed the style of one of my blogs from the standard post display to a pinterest display. It jazzed things up a lot by making more posts available at the same time. I also have a second blog that I was sick of looking at so I completely changed the theme. Took me a week but it looks great now and I’m happy to say that it has actually earned a teeny tiny bit of revenue.

    Thanks for this post and this blog! We appreciate you.

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Oh, hey Rita, glad you tapped me on the shoulder. 😉

      Don’t you love those personal places out in nature? I’ve always had those wherever I’ve lived. They sure do make a difference in keep our sanity. 🙂 Ducks are entertaining, aren’t they?

      You are another example of how changing up the website design can make a difference.
      Congrats on the revenue. It sounds like Pinterest has helped to bring you some traffic?

      Thank you for sharing your experiences. I appreciate you, too!

      Matthew

  6. Farah says:    •   4 years

    Taps on shoulder!

    Hi Matthew,

    That’s a wonderful lesson. I believe i have also gone through similar experiences in my writing and in life in general. Doing something the same way and expecting different results. Usher the rnb singer talks about this in his 2012 song NUMB. I listen to it every time I need inspiration to get myself together!

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Farah,

      Glad you like this. 🙂
      I’ll have to check out that Usher song.

      Thanks again for checking in.

      Matthew

  7. ladybird says:    •   4 years

    Thnx for the insight tho im way too clumsy for video games. If I get tired of writing then I’d try to finish some of my school assignments which would be such a bore and soon I’ll be grateful for simply having the chance to write whatever I like. This is the theory of relativity in life, lol…:)

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hey Ladybird,

      Ha ha, I like that….you have a “different” perspective on school assignments that helps gratitude to grow. Pretty cool outlook, and your future writing filled with topics you choose will keep you motivated.
      Ladybird’s theory of relativity in life…could make a good blog post. 😉

      Great to see you here in the comments. Drop back by soon, okay?

      Matthew

      1. ladybird says:    •   4 years

        Sure! if only my dear professors would gimme a break from their endless torture. Cheers!

        1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

          Ha ha Ladybird,

          Ask those professors to play a round of Angry Birds with ya. 😉

          Matthew

  8. JASBIR CHATTERJEE says:    •   4 years

    Thanks for sharing this piece. Indeed, doing something different when nothing seems to be working is a time-tested thing and works like magic. I am also curious to know whether that $4000 contest that you announced on your blog is genuine or just a gimmick to attract more visitors to your blog. Please forgive me for sounding so blunt.

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Jasbir,

      Yes, the scholarship is genuine. Dec. 23, somebody will vouch for that.

      Stay tuned.

      Thanks for dropping by.

  9. Joan says:    •   4 years

    *taps on shoulder*

    Hey Matt,

    So I’ve never been good at video games (I have terrible hand eye coordination……and the bright colours are also very distracting) but my go to for a breather, to relax is music (classical, rock, mostly indie pop) but the all time best is Billy Joel.

    Billy Joel is LIFE. (I’ve always been a fan of voices like his…not so much a fan as obsessed.)

    And if, a very strong IF, that doesn’t work it has to be meeting new people. Starting a random conversation with a random person helps clear up my mind, and helps decrease the speed of the wheels turning in my head.

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Joan,

      You sound like a really self aware person.
      Did you see Billy Joel at the World Series?

      Matthew

      1. Joan says:    •   4 years

        Thank you!

        Unfortunately I didn’t. I’m not a baseball fan (if I’m correct and that’s what the world series is about), the only sports I actively watch and obsess over are Rugby, I was raised in South Africa so I didn’t really have a choice, and Football (or Soccer as the Americans call it).

        Hopefully I’ll get to see him perform. And I’ll die peacefully afterwards 🙂

        Jo

  10. Yatin Khulbe says:    •   4 years

    Hi Matthew

    There is so much to learn from everything around us. With the help of the game, you have told the wonderful lesson of life to your kids and readers. I am going through tough phase in my professional career. But, I am confident enough to break all the barriers. I will not lose hope. I will keep working hard. Doing something productive is always better than sitting idle and cursing things.

    These days, I am focusing on building my online presence. Recently, I hired a designer for my blog logo. Now, I use that logo for branding my featured images. I am visiting networking events in the nearby places.
    The best part: I have realized my passion. Now, I just have to work out on different areas to overcome all the fluctuations in life.

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Yatin,

      Keep doing what you’re doing. I’m seeing you in the comments all over the web. I’m sure your robust commenting is helping build your online presence.

      Matthew

  11. dark stranger says:    •   4 years

    Ahhh. I learnt this with candy crush. It’s funny when these realisations hit you in small ways but you realise, what a big deal it is

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Glad you liked this, Dark Stranger.

  12. Joy says:    •   4 years

    Hi Matt, thank your for this wonderful Piece!

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hey Joy, good to hear you liked this one. Cheers

  13. Odiah Azu. says:    •   4 years

    Hey everyone!
    Matthew, i’ll have to try out Angry Birds for inspiration.
    Although, mine has been either from watching a horror movie or listening to rock or jazz or blues, or just reading a novel out of the 19th or 20th century. But, frankly, they kinda barely work. They’re more of placebos for me.
    I’ve also found that playing my favourite games won’t do much on inspiration for me either, for the same reason that Joan wrote.
    My major problem, as well as many other writers’, is shortage of personal space. Or maybe its lack of enthusiasm for the inspiration around me. I’m not sure.
    But as a saying goes, an open mind is a filter for unconventional ideas. I’m learning to do just that so I can do really fun things and still be able to have my mind ‘click’.
    Thanks.

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Odiah,

      Interesting how different each person is…for example, the only thing that horror movies do for me is inspire me to run! 🙂
      Seriously, I agree, we need our space and should make some time alone once in awhile. I prefer walks, hikes or just sitting out in nature.

      “An open mind is a filter for unconventional ideas.” Did you come up with that? That’s profound.

      Matthew

      1. Odiah says:    •   4 years

        Hahaha!
        You caught me. I did just come up with that one. But its a mantra that I only recently formed.
        It encourages me when I attempt to adopt other people’s opinions on life and reshape it into one people like me can relate with.
        And I’ll start with sitting with nature while playing Angry Birds. Sounds refreshing.
        I did try playing it the other day, and this time, with only one goal. To use only one bird per level. I was mostly unsuccessful, but I found that it made me focus on one thing. My mind felt lighter. That’s pretty hard for me on
        a normal day. It felt so good, like there was more to life than just walking through life.
        Then life walked in, and I had to give the phone back.

        But, altogether, i’ve got to do it again. And, Matthew, if horror movies inspire you to run, I would say you’re not mistaken.

  14. Alexis Daughtery says:    •   4 years

    Hey Matt,

    Unfortunately I don’t blog for I don’t have the time to do so. But I strongly enjoy writing. When I come across writers block or am just tired of being cooped up in the house, my boyfriend and I always find something to do. We go to the beach, go to amusements parks (that won’t empty out your pockets), we go on hikes, we go to springs and rivers and water parks. When all of our friend are together it’s a big group and it makes things a lot more fun. Almost always, doing activities with all of my friends cures my writers block. Plus its a nice way to get some sun and clear my head.
    Alexis

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Alexis,

      No wonder you don’t have time to blog, you are always doing something! Ha ha, I’m kidding. All those things you listed really do clear the head.
      I wish you success with your writing.

      Matthew

  15. Fiifi Cromwell says:    •   4 years

    This is great Matt. I am inspired to try out something new. Your lesson is synonymous to “If you do what you always do, you get what you always get”.
    Thanks for sharing

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Fiifi,

      That’s awesome how you’re inspired to try something new…only I didn’t say “try.” I said, “do.”
      I guess I’m going all Yoda on ya here…”There is no try. Only do.” 😉

      Thanks for dropping in.

  16. Kohylah Piper says:    •   4 years

    When I saw the email, I initially thought, no! <<<(Facebook and the unwanted candy crush invites had me going off on games for a while)
    I've never played angry birds, and even though you may or may not have piqued my interest, the lesson here was well received. They say insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result…timely piece, great message.

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      *Chuckling* How funny, Kohylah. I didn’t notice that. Wow. I had a good response to the email, so I’m thinking it didn’t negatively affect many people.

      Thanks for letting me know you liked this one. That’s helpful.

      Cheers

  17. KARLENE says:    •   4 years

    IN THIS WORLD TODAY,ITS NICE TO BE A KID INSIDE EVERY KNOW AND THEN,THAT MAKES YOUR KIDS HAPPY.GREAT JOB…

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Awe, thank you, Karlene.

      Being a dad is fun. I appreciate that.

      Thanks for the reminder to stay young inside.

  18. Temwa says:    •   4 years

    Yeah, I am a GTA fan.

  19. Sonu says:    •   4 years

    Tap on the shoulder!!!

    I really loved the way you aquired two important life lessons from your angry birds experience; 1. Don’t give up & 2. Try something new. It shows how sensitive you’re towards the experieces of life; small or big. It’s truely a sign of a creative mind always at work. I loved your write-up and will surely apply the tips for my upcoming blogs.

    btw I used to be an angry-bird-addict and can related to everything you’ve written!! 😀

    Thanks for sharing!

    Sonu

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Sonu,

      I appreciate that. And I’m glad you related so well with this post.
      I’m not a gamer, although this is one game I do enjoy with my kids now and then. Not every day. They don’t play every day. But when you need something relaxing to do, AG produces relaxation almost as well as a workout.:)
      We all need to “launch our birds” differently sometimes.

      Talk again soon,

      Matthew

  20. Kownt Akrilowz says:    •   4 years

    I haven’t played Angry Birds since the Galaxy S1 days. Now days I play much more sophisticated games, Goat Simulator being my favorite. It’s a game which has a different philosophy compared to Angry Birds. The game is designed to allow the player to do as they please with the reward being the experience of discovery. Angry Birds is a very confined game in which the player must figure out how to beat the developer’s pigs, with the developer predetermining how simple or complicated it is to beat a level by limiting the amount of birds a player gets. The reward isn’t an experience as much as it is winning. Sure, there might be a mental benefit from figuring out how to kill pigs with limited resources including a possible IQ point boost (though unlikely). However, the game is designed to be beat and the only thing accomplished while playing is the idea that, well… you might beat a game. If you disagree, I wont get upset.

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hi Kownt,

      I don’t disagree at all…that’s a sophisticated way to look at different games….Blogging should be viewed the same way–experience of discovery. Not something to “win.”
      If you approach your writing career that way, you will succeed.

      Awesome comment. Thanks for joining in.

      Matthew

  21. oscar says:    •   4 years

    Sitting quietly and trying to digest every word that fell from a presenter at a church service,I heard a statement that went something like ,”..don’t let the urgent things of life crowd out the important things in life…” I felt some chills through my ‘bones’. For a while,it seemed to be the only thing I could here,all other sounds were hushed;more like an epiphany .
    Inspiration need not come from grand moments.There is a story in every blooming flower,a lesson from the sprouting seeds;from a mother’s kiss on the cheek ;from every dawn and twilight. Nature speeks volumes,though we seldom stop to listen.Moments that bring bundles of joy must be cherished. They oft teem with inspiration.

  22. Dr Rin Porter says:    •   4 years

    Great wake up call, Matt. For me, this is one of the most inspirational posts you’ve done. It ranks up there with “second wind” by Billy Joel and “Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow ” by Fleetwood Mac. I appreciate your sharing something that came to you from playing with your kids! Little ones are so often the best sources of new ideas.

    Rin

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   4 years Author

      Hey Rin, thank you, that’s awesome (comparing the post to two inspiring songs!) I’ll make a point to share more stories like this one. 🙂