Why I'm Taking a Break From Blogging
Yep, it’s another one of those “sorry I haven’t been around lately” posts that seem to be littering the blogging world these days. It’s spent a good month on my desktop and now, well, here we go.
Right now, I’m enjoying a break from blogging, or really, feeling pressured to produce a never-ending stream of content. For some time, I’ve been overwhelmed with this unspoken burden to keep up so that I don’t fall to the wayside. It’s had me thinking a lot about what precisely it is that I want to put out into the world. For what do I want to take responsibility? What am I trying to say? What am I encouraging? What legacy are my words creating?
When my thoughts become this restless, I turn more towards action. You know, doing something, anything. Purging has become a favorite pastime. I’ve been culling a lot from my life. From the craft projects, I hung onto out of some weird obligation to myself to the thoughts that clutter my mind with ways to go VIRAL, ways to stay RELEVANT, and the ever necessary SIDE HUSTLES. I’m letting them go.
More often, I’m unplugging and not letting myself get weighed down with useless cocktail party trivia. As an information junkie, this has been a hard for me. The fact of the matter is, knowing 10 Weird Things That Happened on the Set of Poltergeist is not information I need to consume and then try to sort and catalog in my brain. I should mention my house has been cleaner for it.
I’m focussing on one thing at a time, like our homeschooling. I’m not impatiently pushing my children through lessons so I can get to my blog stuff, or that ‘sponsored post.’ We’re reading out loud, writing out lists, quizzing each other, and it’s such an awesome feeling. Nothing inspires me more than watching my kids make the connections, struggle for solutions, and grow.
This is where I’m at right now, and I’m not sure how I’m going to progress from here.
How, oh how, did I get here?
This year was NOT going as planned, especially when it came to the blog. I set my sights on niching down on ONE topic and following all the advice I’d accumulated on passive income and making it rich.
The only problem is, that’s not why I write, it has never been why I write. I’d let myself lose focus. I ignored my responsibilities to myself and my craft and muddied my intentions. I didn’t want to admit it, besides there WASN’T TIME FOR THAT! (see above) Slowing down long enough to think about it was a recipe for failure.
The blogging and social media worlds move at a pace that I’ve refused to keep up with in the past. Hmmm. That’s an understatement. In truth, I pompously imagined myself above the fray, and I judged my fellow bloggers and marketers as victims of the sponsored content machine. Then I started to get campaigns, with each paycheck my self-righteousness turned to humility. I’d made a colossal mistake. I missed the whole point. There were no victims; they were more like participants in a race of which I very well may not have had any right being a part.
I felt stupid. I felt alone. I felt like I should just give up.
Then I read this article.
Then I watched this video; the 17-minute mark especially hit a chord.
Then there was this twitter feed.
And this quote.
So, maybe, the machine wasn’t the problem, my trying to be a part of it was? Yeah, it's still a question I'm trying to answer.
Meanwhile, in real life. In the spring, my oldest son joined the Air Force. This month, I took him to the airport so he could fly off across an ocean to his first duty station and a new life. In between that time he got married. *Parenting Side note* I genuinely feel that from the minute they leave our bodies, our children are no longer ours. Years of holding onto to that thought have helped, but it doesn’t erase the fears and hopes of a mother. It’s been tough.
And then there was the election. We decided we didn’t want to live in the middle of America anymore. I wanted the coast, any coast with water, open skies, and open minds. Not everyone just up and decides to move across the country. I can promise you the more people I share this with, the more I fear I’m setting myself up for judgment, or worse, failure.
Onward we go. The job search began.
Then there was an offer and the horrible realization we’d put the cart before the horse. Houses don’t just sell where we live. So we’re in a holding pattern until we get rid of this mortgage. We’re waiting…waiting and purging. If you’ve considered simplifying and going minimalist, let me tell you the question you should be asking. Am I willing to pay to move it across the country? It’s a much better indicator of whether an item brings you joy.
WHY I CAN’T GO BACK
Physically and emotionally, when you get a taste of the freedom simplicity offers it’s hard to just go back to accumulated stuff. Letting go of things creates space to breathe, to move, and to realize what is important enough to hold onto. I feel like I’m at a legit turning point with this blog and with my life.
I don’t want to be a part of the content churning machine that says it’s okay to consume for no reason other than to consume. I don’t want to be responsible for that waste. It’s not my truth anymore, and it feels dishonest to pretend like it is.
Will I still make and share crafts? Probably. But, I’m not going to make for the sake of having content. I want to share more purposefully. Trade in the SEO keywords for my voice. It’s been a while since I’ve listened to it.
I feel like I could go on for another thousand words and talk myself into circles, never really getting anywhere. Instead, I'll leave you with this.