I’ve been blogging since 2014 and I wanted to share with you what it’s like. This serves two purposes: one it might inspire you to do the same or two it will show you the imperfection that is often hidden from blogging, and more broadly, success online.
You might be wondering what the difference is between writing and blogging. Here’s the best description I know of:
“Blogging is to writing what extreme sports are to athletics: more free-form, more accident-prone, less formal, more alive. It is, in many ways, writing out loud.” – Andrew Sullivan
Here’s what it’s like to be a blogger:
Some days it’s like walking down the street naked.
Blogging is all about being vulnerable and sharing the thoughts, ideas and beliefs that we’re all thinking in our busy brains, but too scared to say out loud or in front of others. After you write a piece that is quite revealing, it can feel like you’re not wearing any clothes.
You can walk into an open plan office and feel like the whole world is looking at you and judging you for something you said. As a blogger, you get used to this feeling. You learn pretty quickly that feeling naked is the only way to break your comfort zone and write something epic which helps people.
“The casual conversational tone of a blog is what makes it particularly dangerous” – Daniel B. Beaulieu
Some days it’s stressful.
The game with blogging is consistency. If you don’t write and publish enough, then your results start to drop off. Your writing can get worse and your audience may shrink. This very idea can cause unwanted stress.
Living with extra stress will not set you up to win. I’ve learned to develop a habit of blogging so that no matter the result, I don’t stop. This reduces a lot of the extra stress.
Thinking you can occasionally work on your passion is a delusion. Daily or at least multiple times a week is the only real way to do it right.
Some days it’s like having a conversation with yourself.
Many of the articles I write are hidden conversations with myself. When I’m writing about not giving up, I’m trying to inspire all of you and also have a conversation with myself at the same time.
By consistently blogging and talking with myself, I help work through the many mental challenges and daily emotional obstacles I encounter. I think we need more of this in the world.
Talking with ourselves through blogging is therapeutical and it helps us get out all of the stress, anxiety and fear that we bottle up inside ourselves.
Some days it sucks.
Like when I said blogging was therapy and it could help reduce mass murders. This statement had good intention behind it when I wrote it but it was poorly written, badly delivered, and worst of all, poorly timed – there was a mass murder on the same day.
This recipe for disaster blew up in my face. Some of the publications I write for wanted to fire me, a close friend was very angry with me and the public wanted me burned at the stake.
This day sucked big time. Yet all the other days where I inspired people and helped many through their darkest days made this horrible day bearable.
“There are never times when everything is hi-fives, free pizza and two for one drinks all day. There are good days and bad days in blogging. Such is life”
Some days you feel unstoppable.
Like when I got my first customer for my side business or got an email from a famous CEO I admired. These achievements made me feel unstoppable and like I could do anything. Naturally, this attitude leaked into the writing I did on these days.
Some days I CBF.
Maybe I had a big night out or perhaps didn’t get enough sleep. The answer is not always obvious and it doesn’t have to be. Some days I CBF and I do it anyway. I may blog in the form of responding to emails or writing things in my gratitude tracker.
I may even give a speech at Toastmasters and call that my blog for the day. The reality is that being a blogger is like any pursuit: some days you’re on and other days you’re off. Don’t try and be on 100% of the time or you’ll burn out. Be kind to yourself.
Some days you feel inspirational.
Like when I shared a video about a man blocking the street with his truck so a boy could cross the road. My commentary on the matter inspired many and my social media profiles lit up like a Christmas tree.
I felt like an inspiration on that day and I saw how important messages of kindness could be through the medium of blogging.
“I believed that maybe I could be the modern-day version of Martin Luther King. I saw unlimited possibility and how powerful our human existence is”
It was on this day I decided never ever to give up blogging.
Then there are days like today.
Where I look back on life before blogging. I look at the people that matter and I practice gratitude. I take a step back from the thousands of likes, comments and shares and just enjoy right now.
I stop wondering what it will be like if I hit Tim Ferriss or Tony Robbins status. I place the dreaming big on hold for a day. What I’m really saying is I just stop and embrace non-reactivity. The best way I do this is disconnect from the outcome.
Being outcome focused all the time and having to be productive can be exhausting if it’s not balanced out with moments of nothingness, blank space and time to think.
But most of the time, blogging is…
The best thing I’ve ever said yes to and what I recommend to everyone reading this.
Blogging is how you can help millions of people.
Blogging is how you discover the value you hold.
Blogging is how you find yourself.
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