Hands up in the air if you’re a personal blogger

Hands up in the air if you’re a personal blogger

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Close-up of a West Highland White Terrier puppy looking through a window

Throw your hands up in the air, like you just don’t care. Yeah. Do it, all you personal bloggers. Put your hands up in the air.

Don’t be shy. I know some of you have snuck off into the far corners of the internet. Some of you got disillusioned. I know some of you were still trying to maintain your personal integrity, but then got caught up by the shiny stuff. You got distracted by wanting to keep up. You got pulled into the fray. You tried to carve a niche for yourself and lost yourself in the process.

You read all of the things and got disheartened. No-one wants to hear my story? You cry. I don’t have good enough stats to sell stuff, so I must sell myself to get noticed. I can’t write three blogs a week and maintain a branded Instagram feed, fuck, sometimes I can’t write for three months. You mumble into the wind.

You stop writing about what moves you and angers you and troubles you and scares you. You stop putting you into your blog, because vanilla is more marketable. Find your niche and stick to it. Only pastel colours on your Instagram feed. Only pretty quotes with swirly writing. Stick to the “how to” guide and you’ll succeed. Lose yourself, it’s the only way to stick out among the crowd. Lose yourself.

But you are not a niche blogger. You are a personal blogger. You’ve forgotten why you’re here. You’re meant to speak your truth. Be a little unhinged. Break the rules. What rules? You don’t have rules. Your only rule should be to be true to yourself. Why do you blog in the first place? Is it to make a living? Is it to sell stuff? Is it to scramble every day trying to fit in with the in-crowd while also being unique in your offering? Is your offering naturally unique, because your offering is yourself? Why have you forgotten that? Why have you forgotten that in being brave to speak your truth, you are helping others to speak their own, even if it’s just a simple nod while they read your blog post from their phone in their lunchbreak. Or when they whisper “me too” in the night or when a tear drips down their cheek when they realise that others have had similar moments of frustration and sadness. You writing your thoughts and dreams and hopes and fears down and sharing them with your community, helps in some small way. That is your niche and don’t forget it.

Leave the stylised food and pretty pastels and matching shoes and guides on how to be a better you to the people who truly love that stuff. To the people who chose that path. You chose personal blogging. You have been chasing something that isn’t your calling. Your calling is to share with others, to be raw and unassuming. To sometimes write about nothing, because life isn’t always ups and downs, it’s the in-between and the daily grind. In the quiet is much noise.

Personal blogging was the sole reason this blogging caper began in the first place. An overwhelming need to connect and share stories with each other. As time went by, the industry evolved and that is a great thing. Interest groups have splintered off and they now fill the need in each of us to learn and grow. Somewhere along the way the personal part of blogging was pushed aside and smothered. We did that, we smothered our words and covered our mouths and shunned our own stories for fear of not fitting the mould.

It’s time we free our voices again and write. It’s time we started baring our souls again because in this world of salted caramel-coated over sharing, we’ve lost the authenticity, in its place stands a tempered chocolate veneer. Crack it open, let the gooeyness of life pour out again.

It’s too much pressure trying to be everything. It’s too hard to be a personal blogger within the confines of industry standards. High kick out of that barrier.

Put your hands up if you’re a personal blogger. Now put them down again and write your heart out.

We’re needed again. It’s time.

Bianca x

 

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34 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks Bianca! I needed to read this. I’ve been neglecting my poor blog because – well, I don’t know why because… Because I told myself I need to have an ‘issue’ to write about. Because I was tired and unwell again. Because I hit one of those blah spells where the couch, a book and my cats for company were just SO much more attractive… I need to go remind my blog that I’m still here, and just keep writing. Because if I really get honest, I’m missing it.

    • Life is important. I ebb and flow. I’ll write a lot and then nothing because silence is sometimes all I crave to get through the days. Write when it makes you happy xx

  2. Thanks Bianca! I so needed to read this. In my head I know that my writing is really for me and if it helps someone else along the way that is great! But there is a part of me wondering why can’t I be uber successful. The truth is I can’t because I am not even close to being in a place where my brain would cope with that at all and as such I do what I can.

    Thanks again for writing this!

  3. Hell yeah!!
    This is so good, so true, so needed.
    Thanks for sharing what we’ve been feeling. If you need me, I’ll be over here
    #sharingtheshitoutofit

  4. Yes. I’ve been saying this for years. It’s the personal stories that connect us together. I want them. I want to read them and I want to write them. I don’t want vanilla either.

  5. Yes, it’s most definitely time. My favourite blogs are those brilliant, raw personal blogs. The ones that make me nod, smile, feel thankful to find someone else in the word who thinks like me or even shed a tear. So both of my hands are in the air saying a big HELLO! Thank you for this inspirational piece.

  6. It’s tough being a personal blogger, all conferences and talks mention the importance of finding your ISP, but I don’t have one, I just like writing about the guff we get up to! Thanks for highlighting the ‘struggle’!!

  7. I totally needed to read this. I keep second guessing and thinking my stories aren’t good enough so I stopped writing them and replaced them with shiny things {i.e. product reviews while I think of real topics}. I really need to get back to just writing and not overthinking.

  8. Yay for the personal bloggers – such a great post! I often ask myself why I write my blog – this was an awesome reminder that who cares!!

  9. Yep…really needed this. Have blogged for almost 8 years (I think), and have really lost my blogging mojo a lot this year – time to get back into it.

  10. Hallelujah, yes! Thanks for writing this, Bianca. My personal blogging well is dry because of all the rules I’ve created for myself. But seeing as I’ve created them, surely I can ‘uncreate’ them? Perhaps it’s time.

    Thanks for the reminder. X

  11. I love a bit of everything when reading blogs, what I don’t love is seeing bloggers feel tirtured and comparing themselves to other bloggers. Success is all about perception, for some it’s just opening the laptop. I’m sure your words will be freeing for some Bianca X

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