Let me start by saying that this post is not meant to complain. There are not many things I truly dislike, but I just hate complaining and try to stay away from it where possible. If somebody is complaining to me, I always try to tell them to go and do something about it instead of whining. It leads to funny conversations such as “But what can I do about the weather” – “Well, you could move to somewhere else for starters” just to give you an idea.
When I started blogging, there were two important things I learned:
– Never complain.
– If you are going to be away, explain.
So that’s what I’m doing.
I think that most of us bloggers will understand me when I say I’ve got the Blogger Blues. Or whatever you’d like to call it. It’s this restless feeling you have and kind of includes the following:
– Missing the energy and motivation to write. Even though my head is full with stories, in fact more stories than I can ever write (why did I ever think I’d have a lack of stories to write? Why? WHY?) they are stuck inside my head. Just stuck, unwilling to come out.
– Having that “oh noooo” feeling when it’s time to get up and write. Over the past 1.5 years I changed my routine to getting most of my blogging work done in the morning, before heading out to the office for my “normal” job. So I get up at 06.00 am (OK, my alarm goes off at 06.00 and after snoozing, I usually get up at 06.18) and get my ass to the kitchen table for blogging. I never, not for one moment, felt trouble getting up, until recently. I cannot get myself out of bed for blogging, instead I just stay in my comfort zone and get up only 30 minutes before I really need to make my way to the office, where I’m stuck behind a computer for the rest of the day (by choice!).
– The feeling that I’m not good enough anyway, so why bother. Now I know this is total bullshit because we have to reject presstrips (ouch!) that are totally cool and our numbers have finally reached that magic 10.000 level which I’ve been working so hard for. For many bloggers, that level is like “yay” but for me it was more like: “finally … now let’s move to 25.000”. Really? Yes, really! That’s me… unfortunately. Never good enough…
– Not feeling satisfied enough with the work you do. You can always do better/more, a blog is never “finished”. I hate never being finished, it makes me restless. It’s not like reading a book for example, when you’re done reading it, you are finished. Or when a gym session ends after 60 minutes, you’re finished. But a blog is never finished. Social media sharing is never finished.
– People who know me, know that with me it’s all or nothing. I like you or I don’t like you. I want to do something or I don’t. It’s yes or no, there is no in between. No maybe. When I am committing to something, I want to commit 100%. Not being able to do so feels like failure. Due to recent family worries and an incredible busy time at my “normal” job I’ve had a lack of time to commit to we12travel. And it feels wrong, it feels like failure. Although I’m a believer of the “work hard, play hard” motto, I realized it was time to take a step back and dedicate my time to people who needed me. For driving them to the hospital, for getting chores done or for just being there as a friend, in between trips I’ve been making.
– My laptop is exploding. With half-written stories, with pictures I need to sort and with spreadsheets of things I need to do. Basically, I don’t know where to start cleaning up that mess. I need to back-up my photos (I’ve not transferred my iPhone pictures since the beginning of this year, if I lose my phone, I’m screwed), I need to sort out all the Word/Excel files, need to reply to at least 100 emails, finish print photo albums I started making a long time ago and send the newsletter that has been in draft mode in Mailchimp forever. And that’s just a few things… but where to start?
Last summer I happily announced I was going to publish 4 times a week instead of 3 times. What the hell was I thinking?? How could I ever have thought I’d manage that? I think I kept it up for about 3 weeks. Or maybe 6 but definitely not a whole year. Not with a full time office job and lots of other projects on the side that all require my attention and are just too good to let go.
I need to get back on track and put quality ahead of quantity. The famous words. I should focus on writing things that I’m actually confident about publishing rather than just hitting the “publish” button just to get another story online. If this means less blogs and less visitors, that’s fine, really… And I definitely should to stop comparing myself to other bloggers who either/and have better/more posts and/or pictures because I’m not them and they are not me.
So that brings me back to the beginning of this blog. I am still having the blues, it’s not something that will disappear overnight. I may not publish something for a week or a month… if it’s not good, then it won’t be published. Maybe, having written this and spoken up honestly about it (rather than sitting on the couch feeling ashamed that the words don’t come out) will get me back on track. It probably has … sitting down behind the kitchen table and opening WordPress was a huge step for me. It’s something I hadn’t done in weeks.. I still love writing as much as I always did. However when you are publishing what you write, it brings along a certain pressure. Time to release the pressure and return to the base … sharing my passion for travel and being outdoors with you!
[Note … while writing this I’ve attached my iPhone to my laptop and did a proper back up … so for the people who would answer my question “where to start” with “just do it” … I just did!]
The Confessions of a Travel Blogger are a series in which I step aside from my outdoor/adventure personality and share some more personal stories. If you want to read more of them, you might like:
– 11 Reasons why I am the worst travel blogger
– 6 Things I learned at TBEX Athens
– The “my fear of flying” edition