Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Don't Apologize for Living


There was a time when I would apologize for not having blogged for a day, and would have begged for forgiveness for missing four days. But that feels like a lifetime ago and terribly silly. Seriously, why apologize for living, for living in your moments rather than blogging about the moments?

The thing is, I often read blog posts about living, being in the moment, being present. But at the same time there are no blogging breaks, no lapses in tweeting, instagraming, facebooking. I'm not pointing any fingers mind you. It's just an observation. And I think many times the posts are meant to be encouraging. But the blogger should follow through too right?

And the thing is, I get it. As a blogger, if you miss a few posts, aren't on all the social media channels all the time, you get forgotten. Quickly. And that kind of makes me a bit sad. So if you want to keep your readers, if you want to keep your engagement up, then you have to be "on" all the time. You have to share, post, tweet, etc. 

So where does living in the moment, being present come into play? Can you be present but be plugged in? Honestly, I'm going to say, "no." How can bloggers make time to truly be present, to really unplug and be in the moment but also stay connected and engaged? 

And it's not just about having the most readers, page views, unique visitors, comments, shares … not for me. But I love the comments on my blog. I love the interaction with my friends. And, honestly, it's also about trying to promote my business. But there are times when it can take over. 

I can easily spend 30 minutes or more responding to comments. That's time I'm not taking for myself. It's time I'm not enjoying being outside, enjoying just talking with Jason, or even playing with the dogs. It's time spent plugged in. No, I don't have to respond. I want to. Someone took time to comment and I want to return that with a reply, with a conversation. I love hearing from friends. 

I don't really have any answers in this rambling post. Not really any coherent thoughts. But then again, blogging can be that way right? It's not always about informative posting, about reviews and giveaways, about awesomely inspiring words of wisdom. Sometimes, sometimes it's simply personal words, thoughts, feelings. 

And sometimes I believe that blogging has moved away from that, from personal more towards informative. This isn't all bad mind you. I learn a lot every day. I am inspired every day. But sometimes I feel like I'm missing the person behind the posts. 

How can bloggers be present, be genuine (but also informative), and also remain engaged? Here are my thoughts. Many may disagree, but that's ok because they are my thoughts right?

  • Schedule time to completely unplug, don't just talk about it.
  • Take blogging breaks without any guilt or apologies. 
  • Include your voice and personality especially with informative & review posts.
  • Be human. Life isn't always sunshine and puppy dogs.
  • Avoid jumping on the proverbial bandwagon.