At first it’s a mumble, then the sentiment takes shape.
“I think I’m going to quit blogging.”
The blogger’s shoulders are usually slumped, her eyes sad. A few minutes of conversation later and the story is out.
It’s never the blogging per se that’s the issue. It’s always the conference. Or, rather, it’s being exposed to all those conference attendees.
We all blog for a different reason. The platforms are more or less the same. The tools are more or less the same. But the reasons that bring us to blogging are as diverse as there are blades of grass in a field.
This one started to tell the story of life as an expat mom.
This one started to share her knowledge of her favorite topic.
This one just wanted a digital diary of her child’s first years.
This one started because she wanted a virtual room of her own.
This one started because she heard she could make a living from it.
Beautiful, mundane, extraordinary, varied, and intensely personal reasons.
When we arrive at a conference, for hours at a time, on very little sleep, and often with slightly disturbed intestinal tracts not to mention struggling with the latent anxiety anyone used to living behind a computer feels when exposed to hoards of people, we are bombarded with everyone else’s reasons for blogging, with everyone else’s goals and aspirations.
And, oh my God, are these awesome aspirations. They are full of passion and excitement and they all sound just. so. tantalizing. And so much better than our own.
Soon you start to hear murmurs.
“I should do…”
“I really need to…”
“Maybe I should try…”
Some of these murmurs hum with authentic excitement. An idea that rings true and right has been sparked. Most often though the murmurs are just tired. Another chore has been added to an already exhaustingly overwhelming to do list.
These tired murmurs come from the people who have forgotten their own purpose for blogging and are letting all those other purposes cloud their vision.
Here’s what you need to remember:
It is OK to not want to monetize, optimize, glamorize your blog.
It is OK to want to redesign.
It is OK to just want to write.
It is OK to want to turn your blog into a very successful business engine.
It’s all OK as long as you’re doing it because you want to, not because you feel you should just to keep up with everyone else.
So, if you’re heading to a conference this year, I beg of you, take a moment to finish this sentence:
“I blog because…”
Write your answer on a post-it and stick it on your notebook, laptop, iPad, tablet… And when you get to that overwhelmed feeling, at the conference or after, look at it, remember why you blog, remember that your purpose is yours and that it is awesome, worthy, and enough, because you are awesome, worthy, and enough just the way you are.