Recently I have seen many posts floating around the internet all tackling one particular subject: what blogging has taught the blogger. If you are dedicated to blogging it surely has changed your life in some way. Blogging is a passion, a great hobby and definitely a challenge as well. And with a challenge usually comes a process of learning so it's actually inevitable to be a blogger without learning a thing or two on the journey. I think most would agree the blogging has taught us how to be patient, has probably improved our style of writing and has maybe even revealed something about us we didn't know. In this post I want to focus on an particular and very important life lesson that blogging has taught me over time. A lesson that I forgot about when I originally thought about this subject but that might actually be the most crucial one of all. So what has blogging taught me? It has taught me to build on what is already there instead of throwing in the towel.
People say that the hardest thing about blogging is surviving the first few months. New bloggers often start out feeling really inspired, literally bursting with ideas but after 10 blog posts this feeling fades and they get frustrated with their blog and often shut it down again. I can understand this very well as I was in the same spot a few years ago. I started a blog, mainly writing about fashion and my adventures in Devon and after a few posts I started lacking inspiration and I decided that my life just wasn't interesting enough to keep a blog. I now realise that I couldn't have been further from the truth, life is as interesting as you make it and there is always something to talk about, whether that's about your life or about a controversial topic of society. But anyway, back then I stopped blogging and sadly I deleted my blog. At the age of 18 I made a second attempt and this time I managed to stick to it. I think that as a blogger, we all experience frustrations. I do not know a person who always is a 100 % happy with his/her blog content and schedule and that's perfectly okay. No, actually it is more than just okay, it is great because it enables change and doubts often lead to creativity and new paths. The moment we start questioning our work we also give ourselves the chance of improvement. So blogging is not about never experiencing frustrations, it is about how we deal with them.
Blogging as a perfectionist can be hard. We are striving to create the perfect post, to maintain the perfect blog and to always come up with some great and original ideas. I am just going to take a deep breath and say it: is is impossible to be the perfect blogger. We are humans and things like writer's block and a lack of creativity are annoying, but they are natural. No one can be creative 24/7, it is simply impossible. And once we accept that, we can feel better about blogging and maintain a more realistic approach. I remember looking at my blog when I was 15 and getting really upset - I wasn't too happy about the content, the style of writing let alone the quality of my pictures. And instead of working on it, I gave up. Nowadays I still have similar feelings from time to time but I see them as a chance to better myself and become a better writer. I have to admit, I sometimes thought about deleting old blog posts but I quickly realised it wouldn't do any good. In the end my blog serves as a diary, it reflects my personality and my development as a person. When I first started blogging I struggled to find my personal style of writing just like I struggled to find my 'niche' and ended up writing posts I wasn't truly passionate about. But looking back, I know I needed to write those to find out what I truly wanted. So yes, I am proud of these posts. They might not be as 'perfect as I'd like them to be' but they are part of a journey and helped me become the blogger I am today.
You can't delete your past. It is there and will always be part of you. What you can choose is how you deal with it. In the best case you can stand up for it and learn from it. Instead of running away you can build on the foundation that is already there. When asked for blogging advice, bloggers often say 'just start a blog and stick to it'. And I can only agree with that, from the bottom of my heart. But if it is the best advice for blogging, isn't it the best advice for life as well? I think so. If we truly want something, we have to stick to it and work for it, just like we do with our blogs. Instead of getting frustrated with everything we haven't reached we should appreciate our foundation and build upon it. Just like every blog post is a chance to improve our blog, every day is a chance to improve our lives. If we are unhappy with our content or our website, we change its layout or start taking things into a different direction. But we don't just press the 'delete blog' button. So maybe we should do the same things in real life. Instead of giving up on a project, we should see our mistakes as an opportunity of improvement. Instead of doubting ourselves, we should look at the past, see all the things we have overcome and use these experiences on our journey towards happiness. Sometimes, we need to delete a 'feature' from our lives, need to improve the html, maybe even cut out a 'follower' but we should keep our focus on our goals and build on our past for a better future.