I know that “blogging about blogging” can become incredibly tiresome, especially when combined with a hankering for “the good old days” (which almost certainly didn’t exist btw, things were just annoying back then in different ways) but you’ll have to indulge me on this one…
I AM BLOGGING ABOUT BLOGGING.
This is a positive post though as over the last month or so I’ve really started to enjoy blogging a lot more and it’s all down to some really simple – and in hindsight, obvious – changes.
These are the five things that have helped me fall back in love with blogging…
1. Blogging about whatever I want…
Over the last few weeks I’ve felt like you can see a lot more of my true personality in my posts, simply because I’ve written about a much wider range of things. Re-introducing my Sunday round-up posts have been particularly fun to write as they cover all sorts, but even outside of those I’ve blogged about a wider range of topics. Movies, football, personal things, restaurants, recipes, telly – they’re all welcome here.
It’s silly really because THE WHOLE POINT of setting up this blog post-WIWT was to have a proper personal blog again where I could chat about *anything*. Yet of course, I ended up sticking mostly to beauty and typical lifestyle posts because of nonsensical pigeon holes.
I’ve talked about whether or not bloggers need a niche before and I really do think niches are important for commercial work and making clear to readers what the purpose of a blog is, but despite niches being helpful I’ve realised I can’t stick to one niche long term and truly enjoy blogging.
So that’s that.
I want strangers to be able to read this blog and get a proper sense of “me” (well, to an extent – I don’t want to turn it into a United fan blog that just talks about true crime reconstructions I’ve watched at 3am on Really) and avoiding entire subjects purely to stick to a theme makes me sad. Allowing myself to blog about *anything* has made me much happier.
2. Holding back on social media…
By far and away the biggest obstacle I’d had to blogging recently was feeling like I’d already shared everything on social media. Twitter and Instagram (not to mention Stories and Snapchat) persuade us to cover things “live” as they happen, which can make it hard to bother to sit down and blog about something properly. It can also make followers lazy about clicking through to posts because they can feel like they’ve heard everything you’ve got to say on a subject, when actually your blog post goes into a lot more depth.
Saving images and thoughts for blog posts, like a proper patient adult, has made blogging SO much easier.
And anyway, if you share EVERYTHING on social media why would anyone ever read a blog?
Restraint is not something that comes naturally to me, but I’m enjoying it.
3. Not reading blogs I don’t like…
There are loads of popular blogs that I don’t like yet I still used to obsessively read. I wasn’t doing it for a bitchy “hate-read” but because I was genuinely trying to understand why they were popular. It didn’t matter if I thought they were boring and uninspired, the masses had chosen and this was what EVERYBODY must want to read. Or so I’d convince myself.
Comparison is a slippery slope and it’s a topic that gets covered a lot within the blogosphere but you really do have to just stick to your own thing if you want to be happy and proud of your content. I used to find myself second-guessing what I thought were good ideas because I didn’t see them on other blogs or trying to replicate things from other people just because they worked well for them.
And guess what?
It doesn’t work.
There’s no point trying to rationalise why some really great blogs never get any accolades whilst some fairly vanilla ones get hailed as unmissable. People are all different and in every realm of popular culture there are examples of amazing things that go unrecognised and average things that get over-celebrated. It’s just a fact of life.
When I stopped trying to find the magic formula from blogs I didn’t enjoy and instead started spending more time reading blogs that actually appealed to my interests, I unsurprisingly found I really liked the world of blogging again.
4. Having some sort of schedule…
I haven’t massively embraced having an editorial schedule that spans way into the future as I enjoy blogging more when I approach it with flexibility, but knowing that Fridays are dedicated to Friday Food Memories and Sundays are for The Week That Was posts makes life that little bit easier. I don’t post on Saturdays, so I only have to find four posts to fill Monday-Thursday and I have a long list of post ideas that I keep on my phone as back-up if I can’t think of anything event-based or current.
Now that I’m being more flexible about what I deem “worthy enough” to post on here (see point 1 above) I’ve found it SO much easier to come up with ideas.
5. Not stressing about photos…
Like a lot of bloggers, I often think I can’t post about something because I don’t have good enough imagery. It’s *such* a shame to self-edit like this though; to not share something brilliant because you don’t have the right photos is bonkers. (Also some people – myself included – actually prefer posts with less images because reading posts on mobile with crap data and trying to load endless MASSIVE images of the same thing from slightly different angles is definitely not the one).
I can’t take glossy photos and I know people don’t come to my blog for the photography, so I do my best with an iPhone and Afterlight and remember that my strength is in written content and that’s absolutely fine. Some of the best blogs in terms of photos and creativity are poorly written, it’s just one of those things and different readers will always place more importance on different elements.
Some blogs have gorgeous photography AND the best of the best in terms of words of course, but we don’t worry about those bloggers. They’re probably magic and can’t be trusted.
I hope this renewed love for blogging hangs around a while. It probably won’t but hey, I can always blog about feeling uninspired if so 😉