I’ve been a blogger for almost three and a half years now and in that time, I’ve seen the blogging community evolve in so many ways and becoming more and more saturated, which is of course a good thing in my eyes. I, as well as many other bloggers, have witnessed how bloggers and influencers are making a positive impact within the crazy and somewhat controversial world that is social media.
When I first started blogging, I had no idea what to expect, I wasn’t aware of any of the nitty-gritty details of what a blogger did in order to create and publish consistently and how much influence and impact bloggers had on other people’s views and lives. So, when I was brainstorming for blog post ideas this week, it dawned on me that I’ve never spoken about what goes on behind the scenes in my life as a blogger and I figured that I wanted that to change.
With this in mind, I thought that it would be a good idea to highlight some of the realities of blogging from my perspective as it’s not something I’ve talked about before.
Blogging is so much more than what meets the eye, it’s not as simple as thinking of a post idea and taking to the keyboard straight away to write it. Some posts need planning, time needs to be spent thinking about the imagery, the point you want to put across in your posts and then after it’s published, a lot of time is dedicated to promoting said post in order for it to reach your audience. I spend time working on my blog every day of the week, and there have been a countless amount of times when I’ve been up past midnight working on a post because I haven’t had time to do so during the day.
Even when I’m not creating and publishing new content, I’m still working on things behind the scenes, trying to make my blog the best it can be and I know that this is true for so many other bloggers as well. Being a writer isn’t the only role that coincides with being a blogger, it’s also a matter of managing social media platforms, proofreading your work, being a photographer, going out to find the perfect photo location and so much more. The time and effort a blogger dedicates to their platform should never be underestimated.
There are so many bloggers out there who are doing amazing and exciting things and it’s so easy to compare yourself to them. After all, we do it in our lives offline so it’s only natural that we do it online aswell as we’re exposed to so many sources of inspiration and people who are doing incredibly well for themselves. Don’t get me wrong, I find myself becoming so happy for those people and I get so excited for my blogging friends and other bloggers within the community when they’re doing great things, whether it be an exciting campaign with a brand, organisation or charity or if they’re producing content that they’re proud of, I can’t help but feel happy and proud for them. But, the reality is that it can be hard sometimes when you find yourself comparing yourself to others without even trying to.
I find that this is something I do when I’m feeling unmotivated with my own content, when I feel like I’m slacking a little. I find that the best thing to do in these situations is to take a step back and consider why I turn my hand to blogging in the first place. I don’t do it for the numbers, the likes the comments or the opportunities, as amazing as the latter can be, I do it because I have a passion for it and I love spending my time creating content, it’s just a part of who I am.
I publish a new blog post every Sunday night at 8pm, it’s a routine that I’ve naturally fallen in to over time and it’s something some of my readers have become familiar with now. I think I’ve missed my usual publishing day two times during the course of this year, something I’m quite proud of I have to admit. But, the pressure of creating new content every week can be a little overwhelming sometimes hence why I missed those two Sunday’s because I didn’t want to put that pressure on myself. Thinking of new blog post ideas can be hard sometimes, there’s only so many disability related posts that you can write without feeling that you’re repeating yourself in every one, in my case anyway.
The truth is, I feel guilty if I don’t publish a new post, my family say that I’m too hard on myself and I know that’s true, it’s the reality in many aspects of my life and something I really need to work on.
I guess that, leading on from my point about comparison, it’s easy to feel like I should be creating new and exciting content like many other bloggers and that I should be working hard to get my content out there every week because that’s how I’ll keep my audience engaged.
I’m always hard on myself when a specific blog post doesn’t perform as well as another or when not many people engage with one week’s post compared to the last. But the truth of it is that I need to snap out of this pressure filled mindset and cut myself some slack. As I said previously, I work so hard on my blog, creating content and working on things behind the scenes, so if I’m struggling with ideas or if I don’t have the time to write a post, I need to accept that for what it is and learn to put less pressure on myself. The people who like my content will come back no matter how often I post, at least I hope they will, and that goes for every blogger.
Despite what some people might think, new opportunities don’t come knocking on my door everyday, or every week for that matter. I’m lucky to have been able to work with charities such as the RNIB on their #HowISee campaign, to have been featured in issue 17 of Blogosphere Magazine and to have recently won two awards for my blog but I’ve worked extremely hard to receive these incredible opportunities. Every blogger has to work hard for their achievements, the latter didn’t come easy to me. As I said, I spend time, night and day, on my blog and that’s how I’ve reached where I am today, it’s definitely not something that’s come easy and it’s definitely not something that I’ll ever take for granted, neither would it be for any of the other bloggers I’ve talked to.
It can be hard to switch off
Apart from a couple of personal accounts, all my social media profiles are connected to my blog so every time I log on to Twitter or any other of my socials, my mind is instantly set to blog mode, thinking of how and when to promote my new posts, how I can reach new people and also looking into what other people are posting and what they’re enjoying to read. If I’m out and about or even if I’m lying awake at night and a blog post idea comes out of nowhere, I have to write it down straight away and I often find myself even starting to write it as I know the concept and the idea will start to get clouded over by all the other things I’m thinking about, even if it’s 3am, that’s dedication right there. If I’m going somewhere new or having new experiences or even if something random happens in my day-to-day life, I’m always thinking of how it can be turned into a blog post, it’s almost as if I’m constantly seeking for content opportunities. Of course, I’m not thinking about blogging 24/7, I do switch off when I’m with my family and friends or if my mind is set on something else. It can just be a little hard sometimes, it’s just the blogger in me.
Despite the fact I’ve been a little negative about the whole concept of blogging in this post, I wouldn’t change anything about it. I love spending time creating new content, I love reading other people’s posts and I love reading your feedback on the content I create. Blogging is something that is extremely fulfilling for me and the little challenges that come alongside it is nothing compared to the positive things it brings into my life.
Blogging might not be all it’s made out to be but with the ever-growing presence of bloggers in the online world, all contributing in their own way to empower and inspire other people, it makes it an incredible thing to be a part of.
Are you a blogger? If so, what are some of the realities you face? Also, if you’re not a blogger, did you read something in this post that you weren’t expecting to hear? Let me know in the comments as I’d love to hear from you.