Back on January 16th I started down a path called the “Yakezie Challenge”. It has been an excellent experience so far. I wrote about 8 Ways the Yakezie Challenge has Improved My Blog recently.  All of that is true.

But as I reflected and reread that post, I realized that not only has the experience of being in the Yakezie Challenge improved my blog; it has also changed my web behavior.  It has actually made my web use more enjoyable.

Three Behaviors Now Changed

1.  Reading broader selection of blogs. I don’t spend any less time on the web.  I work in a company that is 100% “in the cloud” which means I am on the web all day, every day.  That hasn’t changed.

But what has changed is how I spend time when not “on the job”.  I formerly had a fairly narrow range of blogs I visited, and I tended not to deviate.  Most were tech or lifehack oriented, but there were a smattering of politically oriented blogs as well.

Since joining the Yakezie Challenge  back in January, I have started collecting blogs to read.  I am reading many more personal finance blogs than I knew existed!  But I have discovered some excellent blog resources as well, like those found in my blog roll.

2. Commenting on blogs.  I was always aware of blog comments, or comments found on web sites.  I have participated in user forums from at least 1994.  But I had not really interacted with bloggers or other commentators until I joined the Yakezie Challenge.  Part of the entire framework of building awareness of your blog involves commenting on other blogs, as well as interacting with commentators on your blog.  I have found this to be wonderfully rewarding and I am developing some new friendships in this manner.

3. Rethought Ad-Block for Chrome.  It was probably the first day after I had joined the Yakezie Challenge, that I was commenting on the forums at Yakezie.com.  The topic was about advertisements and I made some off-handed response about using Ad-Block.  I was immediately challenged as to why I would block ads.  The truth is, I didn’t have an answer.  I had blocked ads so long ago that I couldn’t remember what it was that bugged me about advertisements.

When you no longer remember why you stopped doing something, it is time for a rethink.

I did that, and within days after being challenged on the forums, I stopped using Ad-Block (well, I keep it, but I whitelist virtually every blog I visit).

I have come to realize that for many bloggers, monetizing their blog is a way for them to either help make ends meet (perhaps only enough to pay for the blog host) or to make a little extra (via a “side hustle” like blogging).  That’s a very noble cause, and I believe I can probably survive seeing a few ads.

So, there you have it.  Not only has the Yakezie Challenge helped make be better at blogging.  It has also helped me make some big changes in my own use of the web.

Anything you’ve changed about your web use in the past few months?  Why not mention it here?