A few people have commented in conversation with me that they’ve noticed my blog is missing, and that I haven’t written for a while. My blog isn’t missing – it’s still on the site and accessible from the main menu bar and the footer menu of my site. But they’re correct in stating that I haven’t been blogging for a while. I haven’t. In this post, I hope to explain why I haven’t been blogging lately (and maybe help myself to feel better about the situation).
I’ve been low-key “fighting with myself” about it. This isn’t productive. I always tell myself that I should be blogging and that it’s good for my business, and good for my brand. But I simply never find (or make) the time to do it. As it is, I’m writing this post at 10pm on a Saturday night, when what I’d much rather do is watch a movie, drink a huge mug of tea and enjoy the company of my husband and very sleepy dachshund, Milo.
So, I’ve written about the 3 main reasons that I haven’t been blogging lately.
Why I haven’t been blogging: reason 1
I needed to focus on the work that brings in the money.
I don’t get paid to blog and my posts have never been sponsored. I never set out to make Fox & Owl Media primarily a “blog brand”. I merely enjoy writing and believe I have thoughts and opinions to contribute to my industry, so I wrote articles for the blog. These articles were fairly consistently published until April this year.
An influx of work came through the studio, and I needed to dedicate all my available work hours to these projects. I have dedicated huge amounts of time to improving my skills and creating better products for my clients. This has been successful, with the result that my calendar is more consistently booked than it was last year this time. Therefore, I just had to clear my desk of a lot of the “less imperative” tasks I was doing up until that point. Sadly, blogging fell onto the chopping block and thus I haven’t been blogging at all for the last few months.
Why I haven’t been blogging: reason 2
I needed a break.
I have spent the last 2 years working almost every weekend. I felt I had to because there was so much to do (and there still is). There’s always so much to do when you’re a one-woman-show. I didn’t complain, I just did it. I’m used to pushing myself hard and aiming for excellence.
My husband urged me to relax, take a break and make time for myself and to recharge. I didn’t listen, I just ploughed on with “writing one more blog post”, or “designing just this one page”, or “figuring out this one problem I’m having”. And I burnt out a few times. I fell ill, lost my voice, had 3-day-long migraines, and a few tummy issues – not all at the same time, thankfully, but my body did let me know that I was asking for too much.
A harmfully pervasive discourse in the entrepreneur universe tells us that you have to work all day every day to be successful. Forget about “work-life balance”, forget about enjoying Sundays with your family, forget about having “me-time” in the evenings.
I did that. I worked until I thought I couldn’t anymore, and then I worked some more. Because of this, I think I’ve earned a break. So because I felt that blogging was a “less essential business thing” I was doing, I decided to let it go and exchange it for time spent taking care of my well-being.
Why I haven’t been blogging: reason 3
I ran out of things to write about.
Not technically true, as I have a LONG list of blog topics saved in Trello. I usually brainstorm topics and can come up with 20 ideas. I jot them down and pick 1 to write about. Then I leave that list for a while and come back to it later. When I come back to it, the “spirit” of the idea has left me, and I don’t feel as passionate about the idea as I did when I came up with it.
In that time away from my idea “Master List”, I start second-guessing the value of the topics, the value of my opinion on the topics, and the usefulness of the topics to readers. It got to the point where my second-guessing and over-analysing became paralysing and I just stopped writing.
The more time that went by without any writing or blogging, the louder that over-analysing voice became, and the worse I felt. Downward spiral, anyone?
I think the worst part is that I used to be far more strategic and well organised with my blog writing plan. I wrote a few short series of posts, and I had posts queued up for weeks in advance. Now that I’ve stopped writing and the queue has run out, it’s more difficult to “get back into it” as I’m sort of “out of practice”.
This is my attempt to get back into the habit of writing and blogging. I can’t promise that there will be regular posts out, but I do hope to become generally braver with my writing and my content.
Melissa De Klerk
Writer, Web Designer, Digital Media Strategist, Typophile, Inspiration Junkie, Yogi
Melissa is the owner and creative brain behind Fox & Owl Media. She loves creating content strategies and has considerable experience with Website Design and Brand Management.
You can contact her here, and find her on social media by clicking the links below.