How’s my blog doing?

Laptop + Magnifying Glass

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I punched the air in affirmation when I first read the term “organic blogging“. The idea seemed so apt for where I was heading, which was a path I was treading not so much by choice, but moreso out of necessity.

Eight  months on and I’m not punching the air with as much gusto. I still believe in the premise and concept but it’s not leaving me fulfilled.

“Fulfilled” is crafting posts and ideas for my blog, both content and the actual creation process (I’m a bit of a geek that way). “Fulfilled” is reading other blogs and being inspired and challenged by what I’ve read. “Fulfilled” is engaging with other bloggers on their blogs. “Fulfilled” is keeping up with my favourite and new blogs via Facebook, Twitter or my RSS Reader. “Fulfilled” is using social media to be part of conversations and sharing in ideas. “Fulfilled” is being enriched by inspiring post and quotes. “Fulfilled” is admiring beautiful images. “Fulfilled” is having a chuckle at an amusing post or image, something I could always do with more of.

Because I’ve little spare time between family commitments and working four days a week, I cannot do what I feel I need to do to be “fulfilled” as a blogger. Even today, I announced to my husband, “I’m not really a blogger, I just have a blog.” Well, that’s how I feel at the moment.

I still believe what I wrote when I said I need to blog organically and to be more “measured and purposeful” in what I do here. So, what’s the disconnect?

The bottom line is that I am not fulfilling one of the core aims I had for starting my blog in the first place; to be part of a community. I can’t be part of it very well if I’m not actively and regularly engaged. I feel a little like a snail watching the colony of ants zoom by in a busy blur, whilst I inch along solo.

See, the thing is, to be in the thick of it all, I still believe a blogger has to be quite active. That means blogging regularly and consistently and responding to commenters. That means interacting via comments, reading other blogs, and social media. Even things like the Facebook algorithm force you to “get with the program” otherwise you fall off people’s radars. But being this active takes time, and lots of it. Some weeks last year I know I spent up to 30 hours a week on blogging and social media. That was just not sustainable. Blogging is not my full-time job.

I know I can’t really change a lot in this current season of my life. The only thing I can change is my expectations. My high jump bar is set at 1 metre and I’m barely clearing it. I think I need to accept this is all I can give for now and lower the bar. I probably need to let go of that yearning for regular community engagement…..for now. I suppose it’s a little like learning to let go of a friendship that’s evolving, something I wrote about in my last post.

I’m not sure I’m going to find my peace with this, but I’ve got to try because feeling unfulfilled is very dissatisfying and unsettling.

Are you happy with how you “do” blogging and social media? How much time do you spend on these activities? Dare I ask, how do you think my blog is doing?

P.S: After finishing this post, I found some interesting points and comments from the post How’s your blogging time management? by Styling You with Nikki Parkinson. You might find this post helpful if you found my topic of interest.

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36 thoughts on “How’s my blog doing?

  1. Thanks for linking to that post. Even though blogging is my full-time job, I’m a big believer on the organic nature of it. At the core of what I do, I write because I love writing. And I spend time in the community because I love it. I think if you force this it really looks that way. So it’s a matter of being comfortable with what you can comfortably fit into your blogging week.

    • Thanks for the tips and insight, Nikki. I guess I find it hard to reconcile appearing structured with writing organically but I guess there’s a way to marry both. I agree with writing from the heart though. That’s what touches people.

  2. I know when I was “blogless” I also felt a little “homeless”. So, I know that little snail amongst scurrying ants scenario very well.
    While you haven’t been as active as previously, I love that the quality of your posts are consistent. You’re not posting for the sake of posting. That to me speaks more. And yes, I miss reading more from you. But I understand that you’ve got to get through this chapter of your life.
    You’ll always be part of my community, V xxx

    • Thanks, Grace. I know you’ll be there and I’m really grateful for that. I’m rethinking how I write at the moment. I’m also pondering a little about why and what I write. Maybe this phase is about me smelling the flowers along the way, savouring the metamorphosis. I guess I’ll have a better idea in time.

  3. I’ve always found your blog to be thoughtful and thought provoking V, I must say I have missed reading you since that nuisance of a job came along 🙂 And you know what just by having a blog you are a blogger, regardless of how often (or not) you post. Fairy wishes and butterfly kisses lovely, I hope you manage to find even ground for it all

    • Thanks, Rhi. I don’t deliberately mean to get people thinking but a few people have said that’s what happens with my posts sometimes. Is that a gift? Hmmm, I’m not sure. I hope to find a workable arrangement juggling everything too. I don’t quite believe in having absolutely everything balanced but I do believe in shifting priorities to their requisite place at their appointed time. Time will tell how skilled I become at that!

  4. I’m just doing the do, and squeezing in a little blogging around my work, my family and the rest of my life. I think of myself sometimes as more of an “anecdotal photograph annotator” than a blogger!

    • I love your description “anecdotal photograph annotator”, Kim-Marie! Someone once said I’m kind of a photoblogger and I found myself resisting the idea as much as some women resist the term “mummy bloggers”! But I’m coming around and realising I can do both. How often I post and engage though is something I think I’ll have to keep working on in smaller doses…..along with a huge change in my expectations. I appreciate your comment and thanks for dropping by!

  5. I know exactly what you mean. This last week I’ve found it really had dot find my blogging rhythm and I’m forcing myself to get online and interact, write and comment. Then something happens and it all just falls back into place again. It’s like my blogging bone was dislocated but it’s back where it belongs now…

    • That’s an interesting description, Kim; a dislocated blogging bone! I go with my gut quite a bit and I know I need to just write as it suits. I’d like to blog more consistently but I also need to realise I have to live my life as a priority first, including all the boring and frustrating chore parts of it.

  6. I like Rhianna’s comment about being a blogger no matter how much you post. There’s a lot of truth in that.

    I can hear your frustration, but I think the only option you have is to lower your hopes and expectations, becuer otherwise you are always going to fail yourself. Blogging has so many forms, and that’s ok. You’re still a partof the community, even if you’re not at every event, just like friends IRL

    • I know I need to lower my expectations, Jess. I guess a bit of my FOMO rears its ugly head in this regard too but I need to remember to do it for me and my way. I know it’s not quite what I want but it’s all I can do until I find a better rhythm. Thanks so much for including me as part of the community. It really means a lot.

  7. I always find your posts worth reading Veronica, you obviously put time and thought into your posts. I feel a bit like you in that I don’t see myself as a blogger, I just write a blog. The process is so much more than just banging out a few posts here and there, at least for anyone who wants to be part of the community. Reading, commenting and promoting (your own and others) is all part of the parcel if you strive for that ‘organicness’.

    • So lovely for you to say, Lisa. I do put a lot of thought into what I write. Sometimes I wish it’d all come together magically powerfully and quickly but it’s not always like that. I know I want to do more but I guess, thinking about this post again and the comments, there is an aspect of feeling I have to do more to “keep up with the Joneses”. It’s that treadmill again. Does the successful blogger’s formula require new bloggers to try to “do it all” in order to make a dent in the blogosphere before you reach a pinnacle where you don’t need to do much to keep people coming back? I don’t really know. I guess at the end of the day, as Nikki wrote in her comment, if you force it, people see that. Blogging, like life, is a bit of a journey!

  8. Hi, I’m a newbie blogger and am spending FAR too much time on it. I read somewhere that most bloggers give up after 9 months (hmm… the same amount of time as a pregnancy, coincidence?). From where I’m sitting you look like you are doing fantastically well – I will be very happy if I’m where you’re at after 8 months – congrats and keep on blogging! Sue x

    • Thanks for dropping by Sue, and congratulations on starting your blog! I can relate to your experience as a newbie blogger. I spent so much time on it too, so much. It wasn’t all wasted time but I suppose, as with anything, too much isn’t necessarily a good thing, that is, if you have other commitments to manage too. I’m sure it’d be different if I was a professional full-time blogger though! Good luck with blogging and finding your community!

      P.S: I visited your blog and think I can forgive you for seeming to be more a PC person. 😉

  9. I so struggle with the social time part of it all hun. As you know I too work long hours and I love writing on my blog and reading blogs, but I feel bad because I dont comment as much or I dont play on Twitter as much. But I am just resigning myself to the fact that at this stage of my life, I just cant do it ALL 100%. I think Nikki is so right – do it when you can because you want to not cause you feel you have too. The last thing in the world, I, you or anyone else wants is their blog or the blogosphere to become a chore. I love any little bit you throw our way..when you can and I know you have a beautiful family and work that keeps you busy too. keep on rocking on lovely xx

    • I really admire how you juggle it all, Sonia. I know it’s not a competition but I feel like I barely do half of what you do. You are professionally successful, quickly became a successful blogger, have a gorgeous family of boys and are an amazing homemaker. What else have I missed out?! 😉

      I totally can see how writing naturally, from the heart, is what touches people, inspires, makes them laugh, or even cry. It’s our humanity that is the glue for the community. Thanks for commenting. I really appreciate it. xx

  10. at my peak i was on my blog and social media an insane number of hours a week. i pulled back from 5-7 posts a week to 4 and mostly left twitter… i also know several people who blog once a week with a great post and spend 15-20 minutes a day on community stuff (other blogs, facebook etc) I wonder if that might suit you. i miss your posts and your presence online…but totally understand where you are coming from

    • Thanks so much for dropping by, Deb. I like your suggestion of just 15 minutes a day. I’d definitely like to try that once I figure out what 15 minutes works best. I do miss interacting and wish I had been able to keep up with SYL and the self-care blueprint. I know I would have gained a lot from both. Thank you for doing what you do to support women. It is greatly appreciated.

    • Thanks, Julia. I guess I am being a bit hard on myself. It’s just awkward feeling that disconnect inside. I guess adjusting expectations is the best way through this. xx

  11. I think your blog is doing just fine. And I love your photos too. (one of my favourite instagramers!) we could always be doing more or less, depending on how you look at it, in terms of social media and connecting, but you have to do what works best for you. I am getting better at allocating time for these things so as not to get sidetracked at other times of the day! But it us always a juggling act! X

    • Thanks so much, Martine. I really appreciate your comment about my blog and my photos. I must say you take some great photos yourself! You are right about the amount we could be doing – more or less. I know I have to lower my expectations to fit into where I’m at right now. I do want to take on board the idea of setting time a short amount of time aside for the various activities, as you and Deb Dane suggested. At least I’ll know I’ve done a bit. And if it’s working for you, then I can surely do it with only 2 girls and not 5 energetic boys! 😉

  12. I haven’t been blogging as much as I’d like to – something called ‘life’ has gotten in the way! And I totally understand your frustration. I think your blog is doing fine – I always enjoy reading your posts – they are always so thought-provoking and honest. With regards to writing and social media, you’ve got to find what works for you and find what you can manage. We will always want more for our blogs, but it’s not always sustainable, especially during some seasons of life. Keep on doing what you’re doing – you’ve got your loyal followers 🙂

    • Yes, life gets in the way, but if not for “life”, we’d probably have blog no content. I suspect most bloggers go through the metamorphosis in our use of social media; we eventually need to tame that beast. Thanks for being a loyal follower, Debbie. I really do appreciate it. xx

  13. I’m always on the look-out for one of your posts Veronica but most of all, I’m just on the look out for you 🙂 As Martine said – you have a talent for Instagram and although I only post a photo once a week, I get to enjoy yours a lot more often. You may not be blogging regularly at the moment but you’re as much a part of the blogging community as I am. I just hope you feel that xx

    • Thanks for the reassurance, Kirri. I do feel more connected via Instagram but have felt a little more lost elsewhere. And as I wrote in my post, connecting is important to me. I’ve got some simple ideas to try and manage myself better and hope to see some progress. I think I need to consider integrating my photos more in my blogging. I’ve resisted the idea of being a “photo blogger” as some resist the label “mummy blogger” and I’m not sure quite why, but I think there might be a way for me to incorporate both somehow. I appreciate your comment. xx

  14. Veronica, it was only the other day I saw one of your pics on instagram and thought “she has a real gift”. I hate to sound like a complete sycophant but I sincerely believe it – you could put up a post of your instagram pics and that would be sufficient for me. I still struggle with the community aspect – it’s impossible to keep on top of being active when you study, work, and/or have small kids – but you’re still in my reader so you’re still part of my community 🙂

    • That’s really sweet, Carli. I feel my photography is a gift I’m uncovering after so many years of mere point and shoot photography. Not sure where to take it though in the long run. I must say, like some women fight the term “mummy bloggers”, felt myself fighting the idea of being more a “photo blogger” than a “writing blogger”. I don’t know why but I know it’s silly. I could find a way to marry both some how. I take my hat off to you, studying, working, parenting. I’ve always toyed with more study but just can’t find the head space for it. I appreciate you’ve still got me in your reader too. I truly do, not so much for the “hit” or “stat” but because you are happy to keep engaging. xx

  15. You know where I stand on this. Back to basics for me. The reason why I never stopped blogging for around 9 years now is because I’ve always blogged for me. Once I went back to that, it all sorted itself out 🙂

    • “Back to basics” is a great phrase to remember about blogging, Kristyn. I feel the pull at times to get more into it, especially when I come across certain posts about needing to put in to get back. I do get that idea too. But I’m going to just see how it evolves from here by doing just what I can. Less pressure, more freedom…..see what happens.

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