I’ve not been a very good blogger recently. This post was supposed to be a look back on October, with some of my favourite pictures from the month but it seems I blinked and we’re now two thirds of the way through November. The truth is I’ve been spending a lot more of my time over on Instagram recently. At the end of a long day with the kids, I just find it easier to sit down, choose a pretty picture, spill my thoughts out into a comment box and press send. It’s nice not to worry about SEO or Pinterest or promoting it on Facebook and Twitter like I might do for a blog post… on Instagram I just type and post. Obviously add a few hashtags but that’s basically it. I like the simplicity. Blogging is a lot more complicated than I anticipated when I first set up my WordPress account nine months ago.
When I started Blogging back in February, I loved it straight away. It was a creative outlet, something to primp and preen and make look pretty when my house looked like it had been ransacked by a gang of angry badgers and my face hadn’t seen a drop of make up in months. A little sanctuary, a place just for me. But I made the mistake that I think most bloggers do at some point or another, and it’s only natural really, but… I wanted more people to read it.
In my search for readers I reached out to the blogging community and I discovered the world of linkies and blogging facebook groups and the thousands upon thousands of blogging tips posts that are out there, written by ‘blogging gurus’ and… well it was like falling down the rabbit hole. When people say blogging can be a full time job, they are wrong. Blogging, well blogging like they tell you to do it, is at least equivalent to two full time jobs.
Now if you read my blog or follow me on social media then you know… I have three crazy kids, we home educate, I don’t have a lot of spare time on my hands. But I tried anyway, I really did. For months I tried. I wanted to follow all the tips, I wanted to be consistent, I wanted to feel like my blog was good enough. But no matter how hard I worked at it, often at the expense of everything else, I always fell short. I couldn’t keep up with the posting schedules I set myself, I couldn’t juggle all of the different social media accounts, it was all just too much. And to be completely open with you, it left me feeling pretty shit about myself.
So I resolved not to care about any of that stuff anymore, and things started to get better. I never look at my stats these days, I have no idea how many people read my posts. That’s the way I like it and that’s the way it will stay. I care about the words, the pictures and the videos, I care about the lovely people who write me comments and messages, I care about all the memories with my children that I’m capturing… and that’s it.
It’s not easy to not care though to be honest. Not when you are a part of the blogging world. And for a while it put me off writing on here very often. I wouldn’t call myself a perfectionist but when I do something I like to do it properly. I’m usually all or nothing. And it was frustrating to feel like I wasn’t winning at blogging. I mean it’s not a competition… but sometimes it sure feels like it.
And so that’s how I’ve found myself drifting away from my blog and gravitating more towards the beautiful and welcoming world of Instagram. Which I love, I really do. And looking back on all the pictures from the last couple of months all I see is happy memories and fun days out. Not stressing about writing specific posts or doing linky comments… just having fun and sharing what I want to share. Which is what it was always supposed to be about.
But I want to get back to writing on my blog more often. We have some lovely things coming up before the end of the year that I am really excited to share on here. And you know, it’s not just about sharing the exciting things that we do… just sitting here and writing out all my thoughts, it feels really good. I still love blogging, just not the version of blogging that I was getting pulled into.
But now I’m aiming for balance, I refuse to feel bad about my blog any more. So I’m setting myself some blogging ground rules. From here on out I’m making some promises to myself.
I promise that I will only write when I want to write. I will only write about things that I want to write about. I will never write a post because I feel like I should, because everyone else is writing those kind of posts, because I think it’s what other people want to read, because people might search for it on google, or because someone has given me a free pack of ham (it’s not that I won’t accept sponsored posts and reviews, I’ve worked on some amazing projects that I’ve really enjoyed, it’s more about whether I actually want to write the post or not).
And so here ends my struggle with juggling blogging and life, or so I’m hoping (rather optimistically perhaps). I am not a pro blogger, I’m not a super blogger, I’m not a social media influencer. I’m a Mum. One who happens to like taking pictures, making videos and writing about life on the internet. A Mum who embraces social media and loves using it as a way to connect with people. A Mum who gets over excited when she has a great day out or finds the perfect bobble hat for the kids and just wants to share it with the world. A Mum who needs to write so she can organise her thoughts. A Mum who sometimes feels invisible to the rest of the world and just wants to make her tiny little mark.
All my fellow bloggers, I’d love to know how blogging makes you feel. Do you ever struggle with feeling like a rubbish blogger? Have you managed to come to terms with it? I know not everyone feels the pressure the same way that I do, and lots of people seem to be much better with dealing with it than I am.
Thank you to everyone who has ever read one of my posts, whether you were doing it because my post was before yours in a linky or because you’re my Mum or Sister or even because you genuinely wanted to. I appreciate you all. Especially the ones that leave comments and chat to me on Insta and Facebook, you guys are my favourites.
Join the fun
Get a weekly round-up and exclusive content from our home educating, slow living, everyday adventure seeking life...