It feels a little bit weird to be writing this given how new I am to the blogging world but it is something I have been thinking about a lot lately.
The whole reason for this blog and the main idea behind it was to keep a record of all my adventures in the coming year and beyond. It was made as a way for my family and friends to keep track of where I was and what I was up to. As well as for me to have a lasting record to look back on.
But I was also a little excited about what it might become and the possibilities that exist in the blogging world.
Maybe a was little naive, but this excitement is what caused me to really go all out on this whole blogging thing. On recommendation from my sister (you can read her blog here) I made sure I was self hosted. I then went out and secured all the relevant usernames on the different social media I thought I might want to use. In my mind I was starting to become a fully fledged ‘blogger’.
I wrote my first few posts, started learning all about SEO and began to really enjoy the whole blogging process. I was already really happy with my little space on the internet and was looking forward to seeing it grow.
Then, slowly, my views started to increase. I was over the moon that someone actually wanted to read what I was saying. It spurred me on. I started researching how to use Pinterest. I began tweeting. And generally started putting my blog out into the world.
And then I became so overwhelmed by it all. Blogging is hard. There’s a reason people are full-time bloggers – because that’s how much time you seem to need.
I was on my blog everyday. Tweeting everyday. On Pinterest everyday. But I didn’t really know why? I didn’t know if what I was doing was having a positive impact on my blog. Or if it was just a way to tell myself I was doing something.
I heard people around me talking about scheduling twitter posts and building traffic. Reaching out to PR companies and writing guest posts. Was that something I needed to be doing? Is that what it meant to be a blogger? But the thought of even attempting to do any of that just made me want to crawl into my bed and hide. It just didn’t feel very me.
I connected with bloggers who were just starting out on this journey like me. But unlike me they already had 100’s of followers and 1000’s of views. Did they know a trick I didn’t? Were they just better at this than me? Was I failing when I’d only really just begun?
I started this as a hobby, something I enjoyed. But I was beginning to worry I wasn’t doing it right. It was starting to become more of a stressor than an outlet. I was beginning to think maybe I wasn’t cut out to be a blogger.
But what actually is a blogger?
I’ve been trying to find a quote a saw someone tweet the other day. It’s stuck with me ever since I read it and I think it’s a very important message. It went something like this,
“If you write, you’re a writer. If you bake, you’re a Baker. If you paint you’re a painter.
If you blog you’re a blogger.”
I am a blogger because I have a blog and I write blog posts. That’s what I keep reminding myself of when I feel very overwhelmed by this whole thing.
It doesn’t matter if I post something twice a week, twice a month or even once every few months. All that matters is I’m writing because I want to and creating content I’m proud of.
It doesn’t matter if 100 people read my posts. Or if I’m writing purely for me and for putting my own thoughts on paper.
Sometimes it’s hard to remember that. I think when you first start out, there’s all these expectations that come with blogging.
There’s all these picture perfect images of bloggers thrown around. Bloggers who have thousands of likes and views and make this appear like the easiest thing in the world. But do those people represent what it actually means to be a blogger?
For every blogger who’s made it big, I’ve found that there are plenty more who are simply writing for the pleasure of it. Who don’t worry about views or making money. But then if they do start to make money? Well, that’s just a bonus.
Finding your place in the big world of blogging can be scary and overwhelming. It can feel like a minefield of things you’ve never even heard of, figuring out what an earth SEO is, and how the Instagram algorithm works.
But knowing that stuff doesn’t make you any more of a blogger. It may mean you’re blog becomes more successful faster but as long as you have a blog and you’re writing, you’re a blogger.
My final thoughts.
While I do want my blog to be successful I think it’s important to have my own definition of successful. From now on I want to define my blog as successful if,
- I create content that I’m proud of and I enjoy creating.
- I see, even just one person, actively engage with and enjoy my content. (And I’m perfectly happy if that one person is my mum!)
- My blog is a true reflection of myself, filled with my own words and my own pictures.
And likewise I think everyone needs to have their own definition of what being successful means to them. If you’re definition includes having over 1000 views then that’s amazing and I so hope you get there! If not, well I still hope your blog is everything you want it to be. But whatever your goals or success stories, from the moment you put your first post out there, and for as long as you enjoy doing so, you are a blogger.
I’d love to hear your own thoughts on this topic. All my love,