Sometimes I go on random rambles about blogging life and this is exactly what today’s post is about. I think it’s important in a linked but isolated blogging community to share our thoughts, tips and concerns about what it is to be a blogger. These are the things I try to keep in mind to keep being a sane and happy blogger so if you’re struggling a bit,like I think we all do, these are my tips and feel free to contribute your own!
Thy shalt not covet thy neighbours blog
There are new blogs springing up every day and between that and the big established blogs, anyone can get serious blog envy. Oh look how many comments she got, look at the samples she got, look at how pretty she is, look at the amount of followers she has, look at her lifestyle, look at her site design etc. The trick I found is literally to really only focus on your own blog. Admire others, read others, comment and follow others, be supportive, kind and helpful when you can but only ever take inspiration from other blogs. Leave everything else (including jealousy) behind. Envy will honestly blur your own vision and voice because you’ll be trying to copy someone else rather than showing off your own unique brand. Your blog is meant to be you, so be proud of what only you can bring to it and regardless of whether you have 2 or 200,000 readers, be confident and be proud of what you’re doing.
Patience is a Virtue
Blogging takes a lot of work, dedication, creativity and all importantly time. Time to test products, photograph them, write up reviews, maintain your blog, promote your work and of course, grow as a blog. If you step in and get frustrated that you’re got getting samples/invites or the coverage you expected, you need to take a big step back and look at the bigger picture. The net is crammed with blogs and to gain readers who actually want to repeatedly visit your blog is like gold dust my friend. Sometimes you will need to put in ten times the effort to reap half the reward and you’ll have to do this every day, 5 days a week for as long as you want to continue. I’ve been blogging for a year and a half and not only has the time flown, it has also been a lot of work. Now I happen to enjoy that work but you have to want it and you have to expect literally nothing in return but the satisfaction of creating something for yourself. You’ll find that sometimes things snowball and sometimes things crawl. It’s the name of the game but consistency and creating a routine and an outlook that is positive (but also realistic) is the only way. Then when extra nice things happen it’s a beautiful bonus.
Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff
Some people are going to review the same product as you ahead of you, some people are even going to review it better than you have. Sometimes you’ll stare at a blank screen trying to write a review and not even know where to begin. Sometimes you won’t get many comments or none at all. Some weeks your readers will inexplicably diminish and some weeks they’ll shoot up. It’s just the mysteries of the blogging universe and this is where you’ll need to have faith in your own work. By all means, don’t be afraid to ask for feedback, but you need to have confidence in yourself as blogging is by no means an exact science and it’s only the longer you blog the better the picture you can get of how you’re actually doing. Even now, quite honestly, as I write this, I’m on one hand incredibly happy and thrilled to have made it into the Blog Award Finals when so many others should be there, but now I’m trying not to panic because I feel like my work is being pitched very seriously against other blogs and I’m doubting myself!
Rejection is a part of life
If you’re a seasoned blogger you may also notice a sudden preoccupation with people who unfollow you, be it email followers, Bloglovin, Twitter or any other formats. You may, like me, almost have a morbid fascination with those who reject you. It isn’t healthy folks and as much as you want to track down those people and ask, why, why did you leave me, it really isn’t worth it. Your blog, like your good self, won’t be to everyone’s tastes. It’s as simple as that. There are hugely popular magazines, tv shows and blogs that I just don’t ‘get’ but have huge followings so unfortunately we’re open to the exact same whims, it’s only natural. Although for Twitter, I do love Qwitter for those of you, like me, who just can’t help but know!:)
If it’s not fun don’t do it
At the end of the day, blogging can be as short or as long a road as you want it to be. You can experiment with different types of posts, overhaul your blog, take a break, blog more often and use it as your own little stage to voice your opinion to the world. But at the end of the day, if you’re not enjoying it, it’s not worth it. Something I found when people actually started reading my blog was that I got ‘the fear’ when I realised I actually had an audience and I felt all nervous each day posting, something that still comes up now and again when I look at my stats and realise I’m not just talking to myself! But the point is, if one post a day is too much, don’t post each day. If you want to change the angle of your blog, change it. At the end of the day, it’s your own little corner of the internet world so make sure it represents your vision and voice, not what you think other people want that to be.
So girls, these are what I try to hold onto when I blog, hopefully they weren’t too long and rambling! If you’re a blogger, what have you found to be the toughest aspects and, on the other end of the scale, the most rewarding?