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Are you thinking about launching a cookbook? Today’s guest Lisa Huff talks about how her food blog career helped her get a book deal and she talks about her passion in launching a cookbook. We also talk about the struggles of comparison as a food blogger and how to navigate those negative feelings and be your best!

A photos of Lisa Huff, today's guest on the Chopped Podcast. The text on this image says: Lisa Huff of Snappy Gourmet. Below that it says: the Chopped Podcast, Episode 155.

Today we’re sharing a blogger discussion with Lisa huff of the site Snappy Gourmet. Lisa recently published her first cookbook, but she’s been a food blogger for a long time. We talk about the struggles and celebrations of food blogging.

How to Handle Comparison

In today’s discussion we talk about how to handle comparison. Interestingly enough, I was in a blogger group recently where someone expressed their frustration that anther blogger was getting more traffic but had less attractive food photography.

And that reminded me of tennis. You know, everything reminds me of tennis, right?

But food blogging, like tennis, is always requireing more of you. You can’t just have an awesome serve and play well at tennis. You have to master your backhand and your forehand and everything else.

To think that you can simply be great at photography and be successful at food blogging is oversimplifying what it takes to be successful at food blogging.

And look, I’m sharing this message with myself too because I fall into that trap as well.

  • Have we improved our photography over the years? Absolutely.
  • Has our traffic increased as a result? Absolutely!
  • Can we rest on our improved photography to help our site continue to grow? I don’t think so.

In order to keep growing, to keep expanding our audience and our engagement, we have to do more.

Food Blogger Traffic

There’s so much more to traffic than meets the eye. Food blogging is always asking more of you.It’s a competitive industry. Casey Markee said that last year on this podcast.

There are so many variables that could make one blogger have more traffic than another.

  1. Maybe the other blogger has a niche that leads to a lot of traffic
  2. Or, maybe she’s just better defined her niche in the first place
  3. Maybe the other blogger has better recipes that are easier to follow
  4. Maybe she’s found a way to get her audience back, like meal plans
  5. Maybe she’s got a cousin that runs and SEO firm that sends thousands of people her way
  6. Or maybe her best friend is a social media guru and sends her tons of traffic.

Any of these scenerios are possible. And the point is, there’s a million reasons why someone else might have more traffic than you, some of it may be things you can do better, but some things might be entirely out of your control.

Choose Yourself

In James Altucher’s book, Choose Yourself, he says:

“If you want to be succcesful, you need to study success, not hate it or be envious of it. If you are envious, then you will distance yourself from success and make it that much harder to get there. Never be jealous. Never think someone is “lucky”. Luck is created by the prepared. Never think someone is undeserving of the money they have. That only puts you more step removed from the freedom you aspire to.” — James Altucher

That it in a nutshell. If someone is more successful than you, maybe they work harder or they’re just better.

Food Blogging is like Tennis

I think of Serena Williams in the US Open a couple of years ago. All she needed was to win that US Open and she would be making tennis history. Of course, Serena has already made lots of tennis history. She had won four of the previous major events, but she hadn’t won what they call “the grand slam” where you win all four majors in a calendar year.

All she needed was this US Open to do it. And she sailed through winning matches against tough opponents, and she was in the semi-finals. And her opponent, Roberta Vinci from Italy, was not a power hitter. Serena’s massive serve and her awesome power shots should have no problem with Vinci.

But Vinci didn’t have the pressure of needing to win this one match. She was the underdog. And she didn’t have strength, but she had finesse. I watched the frustration growing in Serena that day and I imagined what she must be thinking: I cannot be losing to HER.

I was in a match like that last year where I was playing someone I thought I should easily beat. Her form was not all that great and she didn’t have that impressive of shots, but yet, I was losing.

I realized something. My thought — I shouldn’t be losing to this player and her bad form — was judgemental. I was judging her based on her form. It was as if I felt I deserved to win because my form was better.

Head Brain vs. Body Brain

I have read the book Inner Game of Tennis where the author talks about the head brain and the body brain. He doesn’t call it that, but that’s how I remember it. Basically, if you play tennis from your head, you’re going to judge yourself, judge others, get mad at yourself when you miss a shot and so one.

You create this harsh internal dialog because you think it will help you play better. But if you play tennis from your head brain, and with that harsh internal dialog, you tighten up. You don’t play well. However, if you play tennis with your body brain, which requires turning the volume down on your head brain, that’s where you play your best.

I think the same is true of food blogging. When we compare ourselves to other, think we deserve better because our form is better, that’s using our head brain. I do this all the time which is why I can speak to it so well.

Love Yourself Wholly

So those are my thoughts on comparison…and it’s something I have to work on daily. When I feel the green monster growing inside, I take a deep breath, and focus. As if I’m in a tennis match, where I have to tune everybody and everything else out. As if I’m taking a deep breath and wiping the slate of my mind clean.

Once the mind is clear, I can connect with myself. And another book I’ve been reading lately is by Gay Hendricks (he’s obviously a favorite author of mine since I just talked about his book The Big Leap a few episodes ago). Anyway, in his book Love Yourself, he says the only way to deal with these negative emotions is to love yourself for having them.

So, rather than shaming myself or putting myself down, for feeling jealous, I actually say, “I love myself for feeling jealous.” Sounds counterintuitive, right? If I love myself for that behavior it’s as if I’m condoning it!

However, loving yourself for having feelings like jealousy allows you to acknowledge those feelings. And if I can love myself for something like that, then it’s as if I’m actually loving myself wholly. And then that feeling passes more quickly.

I hope that’s helpful to you in your process. And I hope you’ll find moments of inspiration from my discussion with Lisa today as we discuss the whole gambit of food blogging!

Launching a Cookbook

Lisa Huff talks about launching a cookbook on today’s episode of the Chopped Podcast. She talks about how for her, having a tight deadline helped her get the work done. She said she realized that even if she had more time, she would always find something she wished she would have done differently. Instead, she approached launching a cookbook with passion and included her family in the process as well.

I hope you find this discussion with Lisa Huff inspiring on your food blogging journey!

Show Notes

This episode on Launching a Cookbook includes information you’ll want to check out:

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