I've been blogging for over three years now, which may not seem very long in comparison to some others. I do, however, feel like I've seen a lot of changes throughout my limited years in the blogging world. When I began Blush and Fairy Dust as a bright eyed, bushy tailed 17-year-old, anyone could start their own website, write about anything under the sun, and there were absolutely no rules. Today, blogging has become less of a hobby and more of a career. And that's certainly not a bad thing. People can make a large income working from home in their pajamas, sharing important tips and lessons that they have learned. I completely support that. I am, however, slightly baffled at the increase in articles and posts about blogging.
Anytime I scroll through my feed on Bloglovin', Pinterest, or Twitter, the bulk of the posts I see shared are “How I Made x Dollars in Just 1 Year of Blogging,” “How I Quit My Job and Started Blogging Full Time,” or “6 Ways to Earn an Income Blogging.” At first, I was interested, so I began clicking on many of these posts so that I too could learn how to be a successful blogger. After reading each post, instead of feeling inspired to improve my blog, I felt a little down about Blush and Fairy Dust. I couldn't really figure out why. It wasn't until a few weeks ago that I realized how harmful these articles have been for my self-esteem.
Blogging has always been a hobby for me. I'm a full-time student, which makes schoolwork my number one priority. As much as I'd love to put more time and effort into my blog, it simply does not take precedence over school. Therefore when I started reading more and more articles about how I could improve Blush and Fairy Dust, I noticed that I really didn't have time to make many of these changes. More importantly, I didn't really want to.
Implementing some of the strategies I read about felt very artificial to me. I love writing and hope to someday work as an editor, so my blog has always felt like practice for my future career. Additionally, I appreciated that it was a low-key, low-stakes way to write. Now, however, I feel like there's a strict set of rules to adhere to, all because of the increase in blogging about blogging. These posts all seem to suggest something: in order to blog successfully you need to do x, and if you don't do it exactly, you won't be successful.
Reading blogging about blogging has frustrated me endlessly. I can't help but want to be successful in my blogging career - whatever that success may entail. Whether it's thousands of readers, thousands of dollars, or name recognition, I want Blush and Fairy Dust to have success. And when I first clicked that ‘create blog’ button three and a half years ago, it seemed like the possibilities were endless. Now I just feel like a tiny dot in a sea of words, opinions, and domains. I worry I have lost the innocence and freedom that used to make my blog individual, unique, and special to me.
As well as these personal ramifications, I've noticed that blogging about blogging brings a lot of traffic to people's blogs (and yes, I fully understand the irony of me blogging about blogging about blogging). Many of the posts I see shared have thousands upon thousands of repins, retweets, and shares. It upsets me because I see a decrease in readership for articles about simple beauty tips and reviews, outfit of the day posts, and hair tutorials. It makes me wonder whether or not you need to blog about blogging in order to increase your readership.
I completely understand that blogging about blogging can be very helpful to many people and never meant to do anyone any harm. However, I feel that it has been a large part of the shift of blogging from hobby to career. Additionally, it has created a standard that many bloggers may find difficult to follow, or may not even want to follow. When this happens, smaller bloggers that don't adhere to these standards find themselves lost in the blogging sea, as well as unappreciated for their skills.
Maybe I'm the only one who feels this way, and maybe I just needed a bit of a rant. If I can take anything away from this brainstorm, it's that I need to stop reading blogging about blogging. Whether it's just a personal opinion or something that others agree with, I am going to try to adhere to my own blogging standards. Because that's why I started it in the first place.
So here's my mantra going forward:
Write about what you love, don't take yourself too seriously, don't get caught up in comparisons.
Lastly, have fun.
What is your opinion on blogging about blogging?