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Nick Maggiulli @dollarsanddata
, 24 tweets, 7 min read Read on Twitter
\1 Tweetstorm on the power of New Year's Resolutions, the wonders of consistency, and discovering yourself.

Two years ago (NYE 2016), I decided I would start an anonymous investment blog. I registered the domain ( and opened this Twitter account.
\2 When I started I had something like 10 Twitter followers, all who were friends.
I decided I would post once a week. Rain or shine. This was one of the most important decisions I ever made for the blog:

Stick to a schedule.
\3 I remember posting my first post and sending it out to a handful of friends and family. Most didn’t click on the link (I tracked clicks with

I can’t tell you how demoralizing this was, especially given how excited I was to start this project.
\4 I know I wasn’t naive enough to expect them to enjoy finance and read my blog weekly, but was a few minutes to check it out and maybe comment on site design an outrageous ask?

I guess it was. It was my first lesson:

You will be mostly alone on your journey.
\5 In fact it was worse than that. I told some co-workers at my ex-employer about the blog and they mostly mocked it. There was even a betting pool for how many weeks before I gave up. Most thought I wouldn’t make it to 20.

The most optimistic was <52 (I’m at post 105 now)
\6 Despite these setbacks, early on I had a bit of luck as well. I emailed @jasonzweigwsj my first post about hedge fund fees asking if he would want me to make him a visualization or something. He didn’t respond for a few days and I just assumed he was busy and ignored it.
\7 But a few days later (only a few weeks into the blog), I got a notification about this tweet:

\8 I can’t tell you how much this tweet changed things for me. Mentally it was everything. I was in a place where no one seemed to care, and here was one of my idols (the reason I started blogging) giving me some validation on my work.
\9 At this point, I knew I might have something, so I kept blogging. Week after week after week.

In April 2017, I put out my 17th post called “Just Keep Buying.” This became my most popular post at the time.…
\10 Though things were doing well for the blog, my relationship with my now ex-gf was not. Here I was getting thousands of people from around the globe to read my work and she had never looked at the blog. Not once.
\11 I understood I would be alone on this journey, but this was just too much of a shock for me. Don’t you always hear about how partners support each other through their personal projects? I had nothing of the sort.
\12 After 4.5 years I had to leave. It was one of the hardest things I ever had to do. But, in choosing between the blog and her, I didn’t really have a choice.
\13 This started the hardest phase of this project. Between July 2017 and November 2017 was arguably the darkest point of my life. Blog traffic was down from my highs in April, I felt like I was running out of ideas, and my personal life was in shambles.
\14 What had I done? Had I thrown away what was a pretty good relationship (despite the lack of support) for something that was just a one hit wonder? Had I made a mistake?
\15 If felt like I was circling the drain until November 2017 when I got to meet many of the people who I now work with (@michaelbatnick) (@ritholtz) (@reformedbroker). Also, I got to meet my hero @jaszonzweigwsj.
\16 I asked Jason, “What would you tell a 27 year-old Jason Zweig to help his career?” He said something I will never forget:

“Read a lot, but not about investing.”
\17 The lightbulb clicked. @morganhousel had just put out an incredible post on compounding called “The Freakishly Strong Base.”…
\18 Between this post and Zweig’s comment, everything just made sense. THIS is how you write an investment article. The next week I copied this method of writing and put out my favorite post I have ever written (The Constant Reminder):…
\19 And this is where the story ends (and begins) my friends. Because after this, I had no more doubts. I knew I would become an even better writer (which I did), I knew I would come to @RitholtzWealth, and I knew things would work out. I don't know why I knew. I just did.
\20 After that post I came to love writing. The funny thing though is that I used to HATE writing. I never enjoyed it until I started getting more recognition for writing good work. It was the recognition from peers that made me love it.
\21 A lot of people argue you should follow your passion, and I agree mostly. However, if you don’t know your passion then FOLLOW WHAT YOU ARE GOOD AT. This might just become your passion.
\22 So what can you take from all of this?

- Stick to a schedule

- Most won’t believe in you, but some will

- Don’t give up even when things seem darkest (the recovery is usually around the corner)

-Do what you are good at (the recognition will MAKE YOU love it)
\23 I went from 10 followers to almost 20k just from writing my thoughts on the internet. I did all this with few new ideas, just new perspectives on old ideas.

If you ever wanted to change something in your life, let 2019 be your year. New Year's Resolutions can work.
\24 Happy investing from Of Dollars And Data. Have a safe New Year’s Eve and an electrifying 2019. Go out and crush it my friends!

Also, props to FinTwit. Best Twitter community on Earth. Wouldn’t be here without you all.

As always, thank you for reading!
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