8 things I’ve learnt (not) blogging

I’ve got a little notebook that I stick any blogging ideas in that come to me. It used to look like this:

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But after ‘going public’ with my blog last month and then promptly (but fortunately only temporarily) losing the above model I upgraded to this:

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I wonder if it will start self-generating soon…

Anyway the point of this of rambling introduction is to say that both still have lots of ideas in them. Luckily for the internet I’ve got lots of things to say. It’s just that this week I haven’t really felt like saying any of them. I’ve started a few posts and not really felt inspired or motivated to finish any of them. My brain has been full up with other things and the blogging words just haven’t been flowing.

As well as being a bit frustrating I definitely felt under pressure in a way that I didn’t in February, March, April and May when I was penning the odd post (ahem, essay) to me, my husband and the occasional accidental passerby who was probably googling for a job and wondering what ‘Mother’ would entail.

I still can’t profess to being a super-regular blogger but going public has, up until now, generated quite good pressure…a bit of a catalyst to commit pen to paper/fingers to keys and see what happens. Blogging publicly is friendly and sociable as well. It’s like being at a party where everyone is having a great time and there’s scintillating conversation. It’s lovely.

But this week the pressure all felt a bit much…it was veering into bad pressure, which wasn’t helping me write at all. I needed to nip out of the party for some fresh air. So I took a few days ‘off’ and on reflection it has actually been a really useful week. I read a post today called How to Overcome Writer’s Block on ‘Live Love Blog’ that made all sorts of great suggestions to encourage you to keep writing  and one of which was to do a list of ten things…

So, in a slightly half-baked attempt (my list only has eight items) to take onboard such nice advice here’s what I’ve learnt this week by not blogging:

1. Real life comes first – groundbreaking I know. Nobel Prize me later.

2. Self pressure – This is probably not true for everyone but I’m pretty confident that there isn’t anyone sat expectantly at home chain-drinking tea and waiting for my next masterpiece; no one will notice if i’m not at the party for a few weeks, let alone a few minutes. What this means is that ultimately I am in control of whether to put myself under pressure or not. Oh I do like being in control, this makes me feel so much better.

3. Blog discoveries – Not wanting to blog myself has freed up time to read more writing by other people. There are some wonderful ones going on my reading list after this week, like this one: You’re Glowing and Other Mummy Myths. You’ll laugh, sob (a lot) and enjoy some lovely sentence structure.

4. I ♥ Lost in Books! – I did publish one post, I finally prioritised my book section and wrote another book review post. I haven’t found hundreds of readers for these, but I really, really enjoy writing them and am refocused to do more. I know, how rock n roll.

5. My beautiful blog – I got thinking about my blogging aims, I believe this falls in the category of ‘blog admin’. Well I now know what I want my blog’s banner and logo to look like, so hurrah for me. And I can tell you, it looks super nice. In my head.

6. Crossing a line? – Maybe my reluctance to finish any of the posts I’ve started this week was about more than just my personal circumstances this week. Maybe some of them were going to be too irrelevant, too controversial, too personal or just too confusing right now.

7. What’s me (and what’s not) – In my bad pressure state I looked around at what trends are around in blogs at the moment and I actually drafted a ‘what’s in my changing bag?’ post. I quite like reading some of these and always think I should be a bit more organised. But to be honest to write a post like this is just so emphatically not me (I can barely remember to put shoes on my child). Given this, and given that my changing bag is more like a changing clutch bag, it was a short post. It mostly listed the ingenious ways I’ve circumnavigated the protocols of parental expectation when it comes to being prepared (if required to defend myself I think I’d use the word imaginative.) An incredibly useful post to draft as it will serve as a good reminder to stay true to myself.

8. I like the air out here – Ultimately this week has shown me that I must nip out of the party for some fresh air from time to time…I hope I can avoid the bad pressure in future and just enjoy the view. But please, come and get me when they bring round the canapés. There is food at this party, isn’t there!?

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26 thoughts on “8 things I’ve learnt (not) blogging

  1. Good call! I’ve had a very similar week, no desire to blog, lots I could blog about but the stories not wanting to be told. The usual self doubt creeping in but I did sit down and force something out today. I’m not a fan of what I posted but it did get things flowing again and I’ve started to shape my next post which feels a bit more me. I’ve recently gone public with my blog too – a very tough call!
    Hopefully you’ll be back in the swing of things now and those notebooks will be rammed with ideas! 🙂

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  2. Ah thank you. And you’re right sometimes just forcing yourself to write can get things flowing. For what it’s worth, Southwold with Vikings sounds lovely! Going public is a big decision isn’t it? Are you pleased you have? I am, for lots of reasons. I find twitter a bit exhausting though.
    Thank you for commenting x

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    1. In some ways it’s nice to no longer have what felt like a very big secret, but then I definitely feel the added pressure. I have zero blogging confidence so it feels like added scrutiny at times but that’s most likely just my perception of it – I doubt anybody actually cares to read it! 😉
      I love Twitter, I’ve made some fab friends on there through the blog but I think you summed it up well – the constant self promotion on there I find very exhausting. That’s something I definitely suck at!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I like this a lot. Since I have given myself a schedule & committed to 3 posts a week, I too have found a bit of pressure has come along with it. However it is only myself that has set these aims so in the grand scheme of things it doesn’t matter if I don’t manage it. #twinklytuesdays xx

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  4. You’ve summed things up really well. Sometimes you get so caught up in blogging you forget their is actual air outside and we do put a lot of pressure on ourselves. It doesn’t matter if we don’t post everyday, because you’re right, at the end of the day no one is sat their getting peeved that our new post isn’t up yet. It’s great to take some time out and to read other blogs as well. There are loads of really inspirational ones and some amazing reads. I often take time out because I can’t be bothered and just go on pinterest for ten minutes then go ‘ahhh my motivation has come back!’.
    I hope you’ve had a nice week. 🙂 xx

    #twinklytuesday

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  5. With the weather the way it has been you picked a good week to have off 🙂 I often find myself going through patches of writing lots and others of not writing so much and have learnt to save some of the posts written in the good patches to cover the bad (if that makes sense) that way I usually have content ready.

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    1. Found it! Ha, not at all embarrassing!
      Such a good tip about saving content…I think I definitely need to learn to do that. I currently get so excited when I’ve actually finished a post that I publish it straight away which, although random, is sort of fine if I’ve got posts but not so good when I haven’t!
      Thanks for commenting

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  6. Great post – I too have had major writers’ block over the last couple of weeks. I think it is when you feel pressure to constantly publish and find yourself writing posts which, as you say, aren’t true to yourself at all. I think sometimes it can be good to remember that quality is always better than quantity – even if it does mean that our stats aren’t as high. Who cares at the end of the day other than you? 🙂

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  7. I totally get this! When I was writing for myself I seemed to have so much to say and then when people started to notice me and read and comment I put so much pressure on myself to write ‘at’ people as opposed to write for myself. There is a fine line! Good luck with your blogging!

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    1. Thank you! There is a fine line isn’t there. I know what you mean. I now quite like that I’m writing at people in some ways, I think it’s developing my writing. But ultimately the ideas, interest and enjoyment are for myself. I suppose there’s the line! Thank you for commenting x

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  8. Oh I do like this post. I’m a strong advocate for doing your own thing, in your own time with blogging. Want to write? Write. Don’t want to write? Don’t. There’s no pressure except for that we put on ourselves. There’s a life out there, too. And there’s no need to jump on bandwagons…the meme style posts can be interesting up to a point but it can then get a bit samey after a while. Great if it’s something you’re interested in, but if not…best to remain true to yourself. xxx #TheList

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    1. Yes, you are so right! Now if only you’d told me all this last week, I wouldn’t have needed to angst about it! I’m definitely keeping my changing bag post as a reminder to stay true to myself. Thank you v much for commenting x

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  9. It’s important to take a breather on occasion. I do feel pressure to keep my blog up, especially since I’m leader for 20+ authors on a blog with a community mission. Still, as you said, real life comes first. Ultimately, it’s a volunteer passion position, and it helps no one to fake it when the passion isn’t there.

    Thanks for linking with #TwinklyTuesday,

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  10. Great post. I have lots of self pressure to hurry up and write the next blog post. I’ve been blogging for years, but on my travels and then my pregnancy. I’m trying to get my blog popular and it’s hard work. It is good to re-evaluate and see what you like to write about and what’s not you. I found you on the #TheList

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    1. It is hard work isn’t it? I didn’t realise how time consuming it would be, in an enjoyable way of course. I just wish I were more technically minded! I hope you enjoy the experience of getting your blog more popular. Thank you for popping by from #thelist!

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  11. Great post, you are so right the only real pressure is the pressure we put on ourselves. I love your blog and you will be just fine 🙂 Thanks for linking up to #TheList x

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    1. Ahh thank you. That’s really lovely. I’m going to take the slow-burner approach and meanwhile try to learn from other’s (like you, thank you!) and teach myself web design…I mean how hard can it be!!?
      Thanks for hosting fab linky #thelist

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  12. Lovely read; you write well lovely blogging pal! So important to stay true to oneself in the blogosphere; it’s very easy to get carried away by the short term pleasures and then feel left out, lonely and cold when the direction of the wind changes.

    Stepping out of the party for some fresh air is a must, especially when bad pressure arises. Real life must absolutely come first; we do well to keep ourselves in remembrance of this obvious point. 🙂 #Twitter

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  13. Ahh thank you very much.
    Yes so true and good point about short term enjoyment and then wondering what happened in the long term….just focusing on our own things should be enough.
    I’ve had a break from linkys this week (well apart from lovely #breastfeedingandI!) and really enjoyed that break too. I just need to figure out a balance that works for me then I’ll be laughing! X

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    1. Don’t worry…you had a few to read! Yes the ones you can’t bring yourself to press publish on are usually the ones you shouldn’t be publishing! Well they are in my case anyway…
      Thanks for hosting #blogstorm

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