Please to grab some water, a protein-rich snack & commence skimming this waytoolong post. Id blame you (as it’s a response to many emails/tweets Ive received as of late) but it’s probably my own fault for not being merciless with the editing. You’ll have that.
I recently joked on twitter that blogging is like the mafia: just when you think you’re out—it sucks you back in.
Blogging is a funny, funny thing.
In my experience most of us begin with nary an expectation and somewhere along the way lose our path.
I like to joke that my life as a blogger is a cautionary tale (to steal a phrase from this uber talented writer) as in only ten!short!years! Ive grown from paid-blogger (or online-journaler as we were called then) to blogging for free.
(aside: Obviously Im not motivated by money or there would be a bazillion products & affiliate links here. That said, I was curious if people would be offended by my highly honest “I like to say EVERYONE LOVES MIZFIT…for free!” They were not. It appears people assume “EVERYONE” refers to everyone *but* them. In-box still duly slammed.)
I was feeling a lot BloggingMalaise’y…and then I went to Fitbloggin.
Prior to leaving town Id written/slotted an April 1st blog post essentially saying Im all done, People. After 3 years Ive shared all the info I have and it’s time to just hang WITH YOU & READ YOU and await the next chapter in my life.
Fitbloggin was amazing.
I’ll admit to being a smidgetad befuddled by a few of the attendees who blog less and earn more (seriously, who wouldnt covet that?) yet the overarching sentiment of being at a FAMILY REUNION & among friends who truly *get me* was so powerful I deleted the post on the flight home.
I was feeling a lot BloggingMalaise’y…and then I STOPPED, SLOWED DOWN, & read my in-box.
Not my hand-held (as I typically do) but from the computer screen.
And I am not embarrassed to say that I hit PRINT on many of the messages, folded them & placed em in my purse for perusal when I need an boost.
For rereading when I begin to meander down the path of questioning what on earth I’m doing (here. in general. in the big picture does my life have impact way).
As I experienced these mental-shifts a solution to my own malaise began to formulate.
But, before I share my cobbled together may or may not be a help to you blogging problems/solutions, I feel compelled to shout out to some bloggers who helped me (knowingly or not) generate the thoughts which follow.
I imagine they are people you already know/blogs you already read—-but if not please to drop by and show em some love:
Charlotte of The Great Fitness Experiment
(Pasta Queen also started my bloggingwheels turning with her recent post about Ghosts of Past Bloggers)
MizFit Blogging Problem #1:
I recently came thisclose to snapping at the Tornado for interrupting me while I was struggling to think of a funny witty snarky thought-provoking mind-blowing post for what was essentially a pretty crappy giveaway.
Solution: There will be far, far fewer gives up in herre. Initially I said YES to the majority of the offers because the economy was in the proverbial crapper (is in the crapper? tomato tomaaahhhto). I really adored being able to play MizFitOprah & toss free treats your way.
Sadly the strings attached to aforementioned free treats frequently morph into ROPES and the back & forth with PR reps has simply become too time consuming. Specific words needing to be linked. Certain turns of phrase must be used. Revisions requested *after* the posts have run and Ive moved on to other things. My own personal irrational need to make the posts NOT just “hey lookie here! you can with this thing!” but heartfelt. It all conspires to be writing about which Im not passionate and, when I reflected upon why I blog, its because Im passionate about you & my soul is nurtured though writing. Im as passionate about some companies—but they are few and far between. I need to remember that & always blog with a joyous heart.
MizFit Blogging Problem #2
My daughter woke the other night and called for me. She was afraid of a thunderstorm.
As I rubbed her back in an effort to soothe my hand wandered down to her little four year old legs. As I massaged them gently I felt the presence of teenytiny leg hairs emerging.
While it sounds like a ‘nothing’ encounter this was an amazingly powerful moment for me.
She’s growing so quickly & will be in kindergarten soon.
As much time as we spend together (see fulltimewriterbyday & cross-reference under lack of childcare) I dont want to look back and wonder how much of that *seemingly* endless time was spent with “Hmmm, if at MizFit I tried…” lurking in the back of my mind.
Solution: Since work is a non-negotiable (I like to eat & have a roof over my head. Until the grocery takes Fitbloggin swag or free product as barter Im gonna stick with the working part of my day.) Im going to change things up here.
Im not even sure that will translate to fewer posts a week (as I adore writing/blogging) but merely a shift to shorter posts.
MizFit Blogging Problem #3:
What are my goals? Why do I blog? What on earth is the point?
As a woman who possesses multiple mission statements/an elaborate vision board the fact I didnt immediately know these answers surprised me.
solution: Stop. Step back. Think about it.
I think for some of us blog malaise is merely a manifestation of being too busy with the rest of life and feeling an obligation to maintain our blog for our readers. I think for others of us there was hope when we initially started blogging (a book? a tv show? moneymoney? a weight-loss transformation? The answers are as varied as there are bloggers on the net) which hasn’t yet come to fruition.
Most interesting to me is when Ive responded to emails from bloggers mired in malaise they frequently dont realize they even possess this ‘hopedream’ until we dig deep into their blogging motivation.
I spent lots of time pondering this question and, I think, have come up with my answer. An answer which doesnt involve anything greater or more earth shattering than a simple desire to create a community where, together, we are greaterSTRONGER than the sum of our parts. For me there is no loftier goal or bigger point than that.
If you’ve made it to the end of this far too long post you, in fact, should receive a give away of sorts.
Ive wandered and rambled and meandered and ended up precisely where I started three years ago:
I blog because it’s an important part of expressing who I am & without it I’d feel as though I were missing a piece of myself.
And, for me, there’s no solution for the malaise stronger than the the realization of that.
(*whispers* here’s where Id ask for your thoughts/opinions if I hadnt already sucked up so much of your time. Skimmers? Speed readers? Skip-to-the-enders? please to find it in your hearts to hit us all up below…)