Blog Boss: Getting Back to My Roots
It’s time for me to get real honest about my blog for a second:
When I started blogging back in 2015, I was in the middle of a mid-life crisis. If you’ve been around here for a while, you probably know the story already, but here’s a brief recap: I got a degree in English education, taught high school English for a while, loved my kids but didn’t love the politics and had a freak out about what I was going to do with my life. I started blogging as an outlet for myself and it slowly evolved into what it is today. Six months into my serious blogging journey (and because of certain life circumstances that prevented me from finding another “real life” job) my husband and I decided to pursue blogging full time. I have never looked back.
Comparison is the Thief of Joy
Since then, I have worked my tail off to grow my audience, to make an income off my blog, to create content upgrades and to grow my email list. I pay for a lot of different services to help me manage my blog, I spend more time researching about my next step to be successful than I do creating my own content and I set huge goals for myself and work 8-10 hours a day trying to achieve them.
It was fun for a little while, but then I started the comparison game. I was getting frustrated that some of my blogging friends were having amazing success with Pinterest and I was doing the same things and seeing no results. I would watch snapchats of blogging friends open up amazing PR packages and get so frustrated that I wasn’t chosen for the same opportunity. Instead of focusing on all the things that WERE going right for me, I was always wanting more and never happy with what I was producing.
Losing my Joy
Dustin and I just moved from Arizona to Louisiana and I took an unplanned 2-week blog break while we went through that process. I missed my blog so much, but it was nice to take a break and just be present again in my life. The first week after moving to our new home, I jumped back into my blog with all my heart, excited to reveal my new (FREE) blogging eCourse and to reconnect with all of my friends. And then after that, it was complete radio silence.
I realized that I’ve lost a lot of my joy when it comes to blogging. Opening up my blog homepage brought me dread. I would spend hours thinking about what I should be working on and just panic about it not being enough, about disappointing my audience and not meeting their expectations. I would second guess everything I would want to write. I have had so many half-written blog posts sitting in my drafts that I have been afraid to publish because they aren’t long enough or they aren’t informative enough or because they might not bring in enough numbers.
Over the last week, I’ve taken a serious look at myself and my relationship with my blog. I chatted with my blog pal Amanda at Blissful Gal on Saturday and I’ve realized that my relationship with my blog has gotten too serious. Yes, it’s my business and yes, it’s how I make an income, but it used to be where I found my joy, too. And I haven’t been happy about blogging in a while now, just pressure.
Back to my Blog Roots
I started blogging because I needed a creative outlet. That outlet turned into a positive force in my life as I started to find peace with my body and love it again, through sharing my passion for makeup and style. But, I felt like every big blogger who I was turning to for blogging advice was telling me I needed to niche down, I needed to create my own courses and sell them, I needed to write about blogging in order to be successful. Without even realizing it, I narrowed my blog down to just blogging advice and the occasional fashion post. I haven’t written a makeup post in months!
I believe that lifestyle blogs matter (although having a focused audience is super important) and I was turning my back to my own philosophy. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE writing my blogging advice posts, but there is MORE to me than just blogging and there is MORE to me than just my page views.
I’m not going to look at my numbers obsessively for the next month (and maybe longer.) I’m only going to check my Google Analytics if I have an abnormality in traffic. I’m going to write what I want to write about because it brings me joy and NOT stress about how many people read it that day.
Let’s be real, of course I want people to read my blog. Of course I want people to share my stuff. Of course I would love a pin to go viral and result in thousands of page views within a week. But I’ve realized that those things are not why I started blogging and those things are not the bigger picture.
The bigger picture is me having girl time with all my friends in the blogging community and talking about makeup and sharing what things you shouldn’t spend your money on (and what you should.) The bigger picture is me helping other women find affordable (and adorable) fashion because I believe that every woman should love getting dressed in the morning instead of feeling like they having nothing to wear. The bigger picture is me opening up about my journey with pediatric cancer and having a recently diagnosed 18-year-old reach out to me because she found my blog and it provided her with hope.
I’m not going to let my blog go to the wayside, but I am going to give myself some grace and a bit of a break. I’m not going to panic if I write a blog post that isn’t “on-niche” and I’m not going to get discouraged if a blog post I write doesn’t get X amount of shares.
I AM going to continue to move forward with all my social media strategies, continue to work on my Pinterest and Instagram accounts and work hard to find brands that I genuinely LOVE to share with my audience. I’m going to continue to share bits and pieces of my blogging advice as I feel inspired to do so. I’m going to start sharing more beauty posts again, because I miss them. I am going to start doing videos again because I think they’re fun. But most of all, I’m only going to do things if it brings me joy. I’m going to take some of the pressure off of myself to be insanely successful and just let it
But most of all, I’m only going to do things if it brings me joy. I’m going to take some of the pressure off of myself to be insanely successful. I started blogging to write and share my favorite things and I’m going to get back to those roots and let everything else happen naturally instead of trying to force it.
Be a Blog Boss
If you are feeling uninspired and in a rut, take a moment to get back to your blog roots. Figure out what brings you joy, what you like to write about and WHY you started blogging to begin with. Let yourself off the hook with numbers and don’t compare your journey to anyone else’s. Her success is not your failure.
I’ve learned that a real blog boss isn’t afraid to be honest about her journey and to get back to her roots. I am a blog boss, and I will find my joy again.
Tell me, what’s your relationship like with your blog right now?