For the Love of Blogging

i'm lateThis article is an invitation to think deeply about what you have given up in order to blog. A list of the top ten 10 activities I gave up over the last decade for the love of blogging is below. What have you given up for the love of blogging?

Blogging is a wonderful hobby, but becoming a blogger can be akin to falling down a rabbit hole.  During your first year you may experience blogging as a lonely occupation of your time that doesn’t meet your expectations. You may start out believing your time will be primarily devoted to content creation, but then find that finding blogs with similar content, and attracting a target audience is not an easy feat.

As you progress you may even become sidelined, behaving like a spectator rather than as a performer. Instead of undertaking the steps to gain the traffic your blog needs to thrive, you may wake up and find you have perched on a toadstool like Alice’s hookah-smoking caterpillar, blowing smoke rings while obsessively playing the counting numbers game (followers, likes and page view stats).

Alice In wonderland

In your following years you may discover that blog promotion and other community building activities are so time consuming that you are free falling faster and deeper down the hole to nowhere, without publishing frequently enough to hold reader attention.

In fact, the longer you blog, the more relationships you develop, and the more complex effective scheduling can become. That’s why it’s important to pace yourself and avoid blogger burnout.

Without doubt, we are all busy people who have time management issues and adding blogging to the mix can be challenging. The results of numerous studies are a wake up call causing increasing concern among the psychiatric community around the world. They demonstrate people who suffer from internet addiction have fewer, or impaired, dopamine receptors interrupting their enjoyment of real life, and that  66% of the mobile users suffer from nomophobia.

While it’s true that my own baby-boomer generation AKA silver surfers have been computer users for decades, we aren’t connected 24/7 as  we do not want to be. In a nutshell,  we are vibrant people who prefer face to face contact.  Our offline lives are full of face to face activities with friends and family, so we limit our electronic communications to the bare minimum.

I’ve said it before in Blog Abandonment is not your only Choice, and will say it again here:

What’s needed to become a long term blogger in any niche is the 5 P’s: Passion, Purpose, Productivity, People skills, and Persistence.

alice in wonderlandCreating the time to blog requires sacrifices. The top ten sacrifices I have made for the love of blogging are:

  1. Group activities and one on one time with family and friends.
  2. Yoga workshops and meditation retreats.
  3. Singing in choirs.
  4. Knitting.
  5. Painting (mostly acrylic abstracts but also watercolors and oil pastels).
  6. Creating mixed media collages.
  7. Writing poetry (mostly Haiku).
  8. Writing flash fiction and short stories.
  9. Paper craft and calligraphy.
  10. Fabric arts.

What have you given up to make the time to blog?

I’m preparing to enjoy the upcoming phase of my life as as senior citizen. I have health issues, and I’m going to cut back my contracted work, but that extra time will not be devoted to blogging.  I intend to rearrange my time management scheduling, so as to include some activities I’ve dropped for the love of blogging, and to accommodate some new hobbies as well.

Are you planning on making any similar life-balance adjustments?

90 thoughts on “For the Love of Blogging

  1. Definitely one of your most intriguing posts, on two levels:
    1) I’ve picked up artistic vibes from you in the past, but still, I’m surprised: painting, mixed media, haiku, paper craft, calligraphy– that’s a lot of art!
    2) I haven’t really thought about what I’ve given up to blog. For me, it’s been not so much giving things up, as devoting less time to them; these would include:

    1. playing the guitar (all my calluses are gone!)
    2. working outside (cutting wood, drainage ditches, house & property maintenance)
    3. personal illustration projects
    4. self-promotion (sending out queries, samples)
    5. reading
    6. writing to friends & family

    I’ll just add that I don’t do more than one blog post a week. I try to maintain a certain standard, and a good post takes time. Striking the right balance is not easy. As you mentioned, social media can easily become addictive. We have to be vigilant. If we give it too much time, it can impoverish our lives.

    1. I don’t want to go into detail because I choose to blog pseudonymously. Though I am no longer able to work in our studio, my hubby and I have an art/craft type of business, Mark.

  2. This is funny. I do relate to the isolation and feeling like it am pouring my great thoughts down a rabbit hole, but then I really don’t stress about it because to me creating content is the whole point of doing it. I have to laugh about the 10 things you gave up for blogging. I have never knitted or done fabric arts and never dreamed of doing these things so I didn’t have to give them up. Never went to actual yoga retreats but still both blog and do yoga. I find that blogging helps me with all writing activities including poetry. I can just post either what I write or some spinoff that comes to mind while I’m writing what I’m really writing. I still do art and post that too.

    What I have given up are cooking and home decor. And social life. Oh well. Like you say, blogging does require some sacrifices.

  3. Great site! Funny I just found this, I have only been blogging for a week and I already I wonder if this will consume too much of my life :). I just posted a small blog last night on how I keep balance, hopefully I can keep it up!

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