The Dunes of Corralejo, Fuerteventura
Roundups, Spain

Month in Review: August 2016

August, you’ve been good to me.  I didn’t always know what I needed, and yet you found a way to give it to me anyway.

You were a month of extremes–weeks with nothing but work and little social interaction, followed by a big blowout of all play and no work.

You were a month of quiet solitude and contemplation, and also a month of collaboration and friendship.

You were a month of pain, a month of release.  You were everything I needed you to be.

Here’s everything I’ve been up to in the month of August, 2016…

I’ve been island hopping!

I arrived in Fuerteventura at the end of July and spent the majority of the month of August in the town of Corralejo, co-living and co-working with Hub Fuerteventura.  It was an experiment for me, to see how I would take to working alongside other digital nomads and whether I would draw any benefit from a more focused working environment and the potential for collaboration with other creatives.

The general takeaway was that it was indeed beneficial, if perhaps for different reasons than I expected.  But more on that in an upcoming post.Hub Fuerteventura, Corralejo, Fuerteventura

It wasn’t all work in Fuerteventura, though–there were days here and there that were spent out and about exploring the island as well as neighboring Isla de Lobos, a “natural park” accessible by a 15-minute ferry ride.  The sand dunes of Fuerteventura and the strange moonscape of Lobos were major highlights.  The Canaries are strangely beautiful!Driving around Fuerteventura, SpainFuerteventura, Canary Islands, Spain Isla de Lobos, Canary Islands, Spain

And by the end of the month, I’d become quite close with my roommate in the shared apartment, so when she half-jokingly invited me to join her the following week on Ibiza (another island belonging to Spain, but this one in the Balearic chain in the Mediterranean) I thought, “Why not?!”  and eagerly booked a ticket the next morning.  Brooke and her friends welcomed me to their group with open arms, and it was a week full of warm and fuzzies that I won’t soon forget.Ibiza, Spain Ibiza, Spain Ibiza, Spain

I’ve been busy blogging “behind the scenes.”

You may have noticed that in the last two months, new blog posts have been fairly sparse.  While this might lead many to believe that I’m not working very hard on the blog at all, this couldn’t be farther from the truth.

SO much of what blogging entails goes on “behind the scenes,” so to speak, meaning there are roughly a million and one tasks to complete aside from publishing new posts, and it is those million and one tasks that have taken up most of my time and energy these past few months.

For the non-bloggers reading this, that includes but is in no way limited to: promoting existing content, promoting existing products, optimizing existing content for SEO or updating with more timely information, creating new graphics (with my new logo, for example), joining new affiliate programs and adding affiliate links to existing posts, corresponding with new affiliate program managers, pitching bigger publications for guest blog posts, writing guest blog posts, switching to a new email marketing service, creating automated email sequences, creating opt-in incentives, taking courses to learn new skills, curating and testing new types of content on social media, and on and on and on.

Catch up on what I’ve been writing off the blog!  Here’s a story I submitted for the Nomad Pass blog, and an interview I did for Johnny Jet!

So, if it ever seems quiet around here in terms of new content, just know that I’m actually still busting my bum behind closed doors to keep this little engine running and to improve upon it every day.  I’m certainly fortunate that I love what I do, but it’s more work than sometimes meets the eye!Fuerteventura, Canary Islands, Spain

The particularly exciting thing about the last few months has been anticipating a drop in traffic as a result of this decrease in content output, but instead seeing my traffic hold steady and even begin to increase.  I used to believe churning out as many new posts as possible was the secret to building and keeping a healthy flow of traffic but I’ve rarely had it in me to keep the pace, so it’s liberating to find out that there are other, more efficient ways to grow your audience (and subsequently increase your revenue).

Leave a comment below if you’re interested in reading more thorough posts on any of the topics I mentioned above (email marketing, affiliate programs, traffic building strategies, etc).

I’ve been practicing self-care.

Self-care means different things to different people.  To me, self-care means, above all, knowing when to say “yes” and when to say “no.”

It means saying “yes” to the things I genuinely want to do, the things that make me feel good, the people who make me happy to be around.  It means saying “yes” to the unexpected opportunities (like going to Ibiza) and the business opportunities I’d otherwise overlook.  It means saying “yes” to taking chances on myself and doing the things that scare me (even if that thing is just writing a simple email to someone I admire) because I’d rather not have regrets.  It means saying “yes” to daily practices of gratitude, mindfulness, and meditation (centered around yoga).Isla de Lobos, Canary Islands, Spain
It means saying “no” to things that make me feel tired and run down.  It means saying “no” to excessive alcohol and foods that don’t make me feel amazing (both physically and emotionally).  It means saying “no” to late nights staying up working and “no” to the social interactions that feel forced and drain me of energy.  It means saying “no” to negative self-talk and “no” to worrying about things that are beyond my control.Fuerteventura, Spain Baobab vegan restaurant in Fuerteventura, Spain Baobab vegan restaurant in Fuerteventura, Spain

If you want to join me on my self-care journey (which I fully intend to continue beyond this month), these are a few of the books I’ve been reading that have helped put me in the right frame of mind:

I also just found this blog post that beautifully explains what self-love really means, and I think it should be mandatory reading for everyone!Isla de Lobos, Canary Islands, Spain

My Most Popular Blog Posts

The Digital Nomad’s Packing List

Opportunities Not Seen

Why Become Location Independent?  5 Entrepreneurs Share Their Reasons

My Best Instagrams

A photo posted by Leah Davis (@thesweetestway) on

A Few Things I’m Loving

ConvertKit – This month, my email strategy got a complete overhaul.  Bye bye, Mailchimp, hellooo ConvertKit!  My email list has grown substantially since my rebrand (hooray!) meaning it was time for me to start paying for a premium mail service with useful features like the ability to segment my list and add tags to subscribers based on their interests (so people only get emails that they’ll care about) as well as unlimited opt-in forms, automated sequences, and more.  This is my new secret weapon, and I’m so excited to really get things moving!

The World Can Learn a Thing or Two from Canada – This piece by Dave and Deb of The Planet D oozes with Canadian pride, and it really makes my heart smile.  Our neighbors to the north are truly kind-hearted and generous, and it shows in everything they do.  And I just can’t get enough of Justin Trudeau…can he please lead our country too??

5o Paulo Coelho Quotes That Will Soothe Your Aching Soul – Particularly this one:

“Don’t listen to the malicious comments of those friends who, never taking any risks themselves, can only see other people’s failures.”

That’s it for August…onward and upward!

This post contains affiliate links.

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  • Reply Nicole September 1, 2016 at 7:58 pm

    Hey Leah! I would love to read some more blogging tips. I’ve been blogging for just under a year now and can totally relate to you on all the behind the scenes stuff. I’ve been cherry picking bits of advice from here and there around the internet but would love to hear some from you.
    Also, love the E-Book! I read it in one sitting and was feeling so inspired afterwards. Such a great read!

    • Reply Leah Davis September 2, 2016 at 1:10 am

      Hey Nicole! Aw, I’m so happy to hear you liked to eBook!! Thanks so much! Good to know you are interested in more blogging topics, too, as I’ve learned a lot in the last few months and am eager to share some insights! 🙂

  • Reply Jurga - Full Suitcase September 3, 2016 at 7:19 am

    I was reading your post, Leah, and it could have been written by me (except for the island-hopping part – here it was more like the-most-amazing-nature-hopping 😉 ).
    I also have a blog (less than a year – so still in baby shoes) and this ‘behind the scenes’ stuff seems to take so much time! And I’m not even talking about social media – which seems to be the key to (other people’s interpretation of) your success. Do you happen to have some tips on how to become successful on social media without spending 10 hours a day on it (and abandoning your husband and kids completely) ? 😉
    Jurga – Full Suitcase recently posted…Our 2016 Summer Vacation: Fun, Crazy, UnforgettableMy Profile

    • Reply Leah Davis September 4, 2016 at 1:58 am

      I so know what you mean about social media! I put relatively little time into maintaining my social media accounts when compared to other menial tasks. My best tip for gaining followers and engagement on social is just consistency–and I really think it applies across all platforms. Consistent posting schedule, consistent quality of images, consistent interaction with people, etc. Good luck! 🙂

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