Imagine blogging didn't exist. So many hours filled with writing, planning and interacting with the community would have to be filled again and dedicated to something else. A situation that is really hard to imagine, especially if blogging is a firm part of your daily life and has the therefore become a firm part of you as a person.
It all started as a simple hobby, something I did from time to time. When I typed up my first blog post that was about my July favourites I never imagined where blogging would lead me and that it would eventually be more than just a thing I occasionally did. Right now I can't picture my life without my blog and I am sure most bloggers would agree with me because as we all know, blogging can be very addictive. But luckily, blogging doesn't come with many negative side effects, if you don't count taking so many pictures of your pasta that you're rather eating a pasta salad in the end. But jokes aside, blogging definitely helped me in many different ways and if you're a blogger I'm sure you can relate to me.
First of all blogging somehow provides a frame. When I went to my cousin's graduation a few days ago it took me back to my own graduation and I stood there honestly wondering where the last two years went. And while I was looking back reflecting on my graduation and my time at school a thought crossed my mind - while I didn't particularly miss school I missed having a structure and a clear purpose. Even though I might come across differently I am secretly craving stability and I'd probably do better in a 9 to 5 job than as a freelance worker. While I was living abroad I sometimes didn't have a routine and in situations like these I was more than happy to rely on blogging to at least provide the sense of having a structure. Because if you upload on the same days and take part in the same Twitter chats that definitely brings structure into your life.
But it is more than that: not only does blogging come with structure it also comes with a sense of pride and achievement. I am a really ambitious person and I love feeling like I have achieved something and therefore blogging certainly fits my personality. I try not to measure my blog in numbers and to value each text that I've written, as long as I feel passionate and happy about it. I love having something of my own, something I have created and something that I have done all by myself. My blog is my little space on the internet and that's an amazing feeling. On my blogging journey I also came to understand why people loved the idea of having a restaurant or a bar of their own - it is a great feeling indeed and therefore blogging comes with a privilege that not many people in life possess: to be able to actually see
your work. That applies for most creative jobs of course. In other areas your work is a lot more 'abstract'. So even when I'm having a bad day or week and feel like a lot is going wrong I know that I still have my blog to rely on. I still have a sense of achievement even when other things appear to be failing and of course, there is still is an amazing community.
Speaking of blogging as a creative job or in my case, hobby, I also need blogging as a creative outlet. I love having my own space to 'design' just like I want and that there are endless opportunities for content and posts. I love having the ability to write about what is on my mind and to share my thoughts and worries. And to inspire people, this one definitely comes before all the other perks of blogging. In terms of inspiring others, my favourite thing about having a blog is that it gives you the opportunity to have a say in this world and to share your beliefs. We all got interesting and individual opinions and being a blogger we got the amazing and also crucial opportunity to make use of our voices. Speaking of opportunities, the opportunity to mention Ghandi in this context is too good not to take. He was preaching us to be the change we want to see in this world and I believe that this is one of the most important and inspiring quotes from him. We should use our voices and speak up, even if a topic might be controversial. But I'll probably write a separate post about this topic soon as it's important to me and deserves a post entirely dedicated to it.
Not only does blogging provide structure it also comes with a lot of work, especially if you are doing it full-time and if you are taking promoting it on social media very seriously (hides in a corner and makes a vow to get better at this).
As a blogger your work is never entirely done and there is always something else you could do to improve your traffic or to enhance your audience. But I think that's great because as bloggers being bored and not knowing how to fill your day thus doesn't happen. The only downside is not knowing when to stop though. Getting caught up in numbers is easy, way easier than just letting things flow. Seeing your stats drop can be very discouraging and therefore we are faced with a certain amount a pressure, a pressure that actually comes from inside ones and that we can choose to control. But yes, I would be lying if I said it was easy to find the balance between blogging and life. I always try to remind myself that blogging is still a hobby and that it should be fun, if not it becomes a chore instead. And that's the last thing I want to happen. But still, there is no better feeling than having an extra half an hour and then dedicating it to your blog - a feeling of productivity that playing Candy Crush definitely wouldn't evoke.
All in all, blogging almost feels like being part of a different world, a parallel universe. Just like the blogging community feels so real and yet somehow surreal but that doesn't make it any less interesting and unique. When I talked about all the perks of blogging I forgot to mention one thing: escapism. Blogging allows us to escape into another world, a world where we can present ourselves just like we want and a world where we can be creative and speak up, a world where our voices are heard. I really appreciate that opportunity and that form of escapism although we shouldn't forget to transfer these values into the real world so these two worlds don't clash but unite.
What do you think?
Do you need
blogging? Do you struggle to find a balance between blogging and life?
I'd love to hear your thoughts. x