The other morning I sat down to write a blog post about not taking blogging too seriously. I poured my heart into the post, only to find out that I somehow deleted it at the end of the session. Talk about irony… It was so ironic, that I couldn’t even get mad. I just laughed. I mean, let’s be real, deep down I was still extremely frustrated, but it was like God, himself, was telling me, “Oh, yeah. Let’s see how seriously you take your blog after this.” Like I said, I had to just laugh.
Here’s my attempt to recreate that post. We’ll see how I do.
Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about blogging. With all cheaters that buy comments/likes (if you want to read a great article about bloggers that buy likes and followers, read my girl Ashley’s post here), and even with all the link-ups and comment/like pods, it’s all started to feel so inauthentic. (If you aren’t sure what a comment/like pod is, it’s basically a support group where you and other bloggers will comment/like each other’s content, whenever you post.)
Now, this is not to poo-poo on those support groups, because I actually belong to quite a few. In fact, I have met so many incredible women and discovered some amazing accounts, through these types of groups. The purpose of these types of groups is to support and help grow each other’s blogs, but the problem with these groups is that it is not genuine growth. It’s support, yes, but not growth.
My point is simply this: when did I get so caught up in trying to grow my blog, that I stopped genuinely enjoying it? I used to follow accounts and read blogs that I genuinely loved and that inspired me. Now I’m quick to comment on random accounts and blogs, in hopes of getting a reciporated effort on mine. Law of reciprocity…it’s a real thing, people.
That has been my struggle this year. When I started this blog, it was because I felt inspired. I would read blogs daily, and felt like I had something worth sharing. At some point, I lost that. It became a business. I started treating it just like a business, and esteeming it equally to my day job. The problem with that, is that it doesn’t pay the bills. ‘Nuff said.
A few months ago, after burning the candle at both ends for over a year, I had a ‘come to Jesus’ talk with myself. Conclusion: it’s not the main thing, so don’t treat it like the main thing, because…it’s not! It’s a passion, and when I stop treating it like a passion, it becomes a burden.
I discussed this with a friend a few weeks ago who gave me some great advice: Don’t confuse your passions with your pursuits. This beautifully articulated the way I had been feeling. So, what are my pursuits? My career, my family, my community, my faith and my health. When any of those feel out of balance I feel out of balance.
So what do I plan to do? Simple answer: I don’t know. I don’t feel like letting go of the blog is the right answer, because, like I said, it’s a passion. It’s something that excites me and gives me an opportunity to express my creativity. Plus, I adore all of you and am so grateful for your support!! All I know is that I’m not allowing it to fill a place that I can’t give it, anymore. I plan to refill that place with getting back in shape, spending more time in the word, talking more walks with my husband and spending more time with my community. Without those things, I am nothing. That doesn’t necessarily mean that I will blog any less, or engage less even. I just need to regain a healthy perspective on my life, and that starts with a cold hard look within.
I guess I’m just really longing to get back to the heart of the blog. To visit blogs I genuinely love. To know that people are visiting mine because they genuinely want to. To post when I want to post and not because I have to hit some sort of self-inflicted quota. To know that at the end of the day, this blog doesn’t run me, I run it.
Thanks for allowing me to share these thoughts with you today. I would love to hear your thoughts on blogging in the comments below. Have a great Friday!
Dress, c/o WAYF (not yet in stores) – same lace, different style / Bag / Sunnies / Shoes
The frustration when a whole post gets eaten after lots of work is for real! But girl I couldn't agree with you more on bloggers who "cheat" and buy their followers, especially because it's so obvious! On a brighter note, can we talk about how gorgeous this dress is on you?! LOVE it <3Green Fashionista
Yeah, when I see people with about the same followers as me have 1000+ likes…it's a little fishy!!
First of all, I love your dress! Secondly, I so appreciate your honesty. I started my blog a few months ago (it was something I talked about doing forever), and I already see myself feeling pressure to attract more readers, etc. But you are completely right! I think that we should be blogging for ourselves, not for anyone else. I think when it starts feeling like a chore is when you need to reevaluate. I often remind myself that this is just supposed to be a fun hobby!Have a great weekend!Emilyhttps://baublesandthreads.wordpress.com/
The pressure is real! I think it you keep the right perspective it can be a fun hobby for sure! Hang in there!
I'm so out of the loop I didn't even no you could buy likes and followers!! Ha! That's crazy! My blog is very slowly increasing by itself because I'm a very lazy blogger and I'm ok with that. Lol!! This dress is so pretty! I love the color it looks great on you!Jaymie
Oh gosh, yes it's so bad!! Thanks so much for stopping by!
Girl you know I have been feeling the same way lately! I love my blog, but now I feel all this pressure to do more, more, more all the time. It's exhausting. I feel like maybe the trade off for not focusing on it so much will be slower growth, but honestly I'm ok with that because I have to do me first :)xo Laceyhttp://www.myboringcloset.com
Oh girl, I know we have had our talks! You do you, boo!!
Oh I love this dress! Both the color and style look great on you :)And I know how you feel. Blogging can be so stressful sometimes. For instance, I worked till late last night so I could upload a post at 8 am. When I went to publish it this morning, my website would not let me login no matter what I tried and when I finally was able to get in (ended up being a stupid plugin that was stopping me) I could not post till 9. Of course, posting an hour late is not THAT bad. But it is certainly irritating when you feel like your website is always out to get you haha.And I know what you mean about commenting to gain traffic. I have definitely felt the pressures to do so as well. I do genuinely enjoy your blog, though, so I am glad that you are not going to stop :)Have a great weekend!xo, mikéla / simplydavelyn.com
Yeah, blogging CAN be stressful for sure!! Thanks for your thoughtful comment!
"Don't confuse your passions with your pursuits." Best advice I've heard in a long damn time.When I first started my blog in 2012 it was genuinely SO FUN, every part of it from outfit planning to taking, editing, and posting photos, to seeing what other bloggers were wearing and gaining inspiration from them. It is by no means my business but it feels like it is for everyone else, so it's pushed me to worry about things like engagement and stats and site design to the point that I stopped blogging for basically the whole summer. I decided I wasn't going to blog anymore until I could update my design. I feel you on not wanting to quit blogging. I've always wanted to keep it going for as long as possible, because it is seriously the coolest journaling kind of experience for me. Like, I'm pretty sure my kids will be able to dig the archives of the internet one day to see how mom's style evolved over the years (I don't even have kids yet, but this is what I think about. lol). So Idk man, let's see what happens. I wish you all the best. ♡-Nathyhttp://earnestyle.blogspot.com/
I'm hear ya! Btw, I have been blogging for that long, too! So fun!
Dress is amazing and you look gorgeous !http://chicglamstyle.com
First off, thanks for being so candid in this post. It actually allowed me to reflect about my vision for the blog. The support groups are indeed amazing and I have seen the growth myself, but really come to think of it, I was more elated back then when I read comments on my blogs because these are from people who genuinely loved my look – not because they were required to reciprocate my comment. That is why I prefer joining linkups more because then the comments are genuine since you choose the post that you like!Going back to this outfit, WAYF can do no wrong. You have such great style! Keep doing that because I am always inspired when I read your blog. Yours is definitely one of my faves and I like when I see your posts that I am inspired in my own style!Abby of Life in the Fash Lane
Loved reading the post because I completely identify with it. There are definitely days when blogging makes me feel down and it shouldn't be like that! Also, loving the dress, such a fab colour! xxhttp://www.thatnewdress.com
Thanks for sharing this Leah. I admit to feeling the same way lately. I need a little more balance. Additionally, now that I've started to get more sponsored posts I've realized that the workload usually doesn't match up with the payoff. It really does come back to doing it because you love it and engaging with others that you admire. AND you look gorgeous in this dress:)Heidi || Wishes & Reality