Blogging is a funny old thing. You can go from being full of enthusiasm and motivation, to feeling like you just don’t care anymore. When I first started blogging back in 2015, I absolutely loved it and couldn’t wait to get posts written and published. I was so full of love for it and I miss that.
I wasn’t a massive blog reader before I decided that I wanted to start my own beauty blog – I read a few but not that many. I just knew that I had a huge passion for beauty and I wanted to write about it. I didn’t know about PR, opportunities, SEO … I was clueless. The first time a company asked if they could send me something, I asked how much it would cost me. It took me a while to get my head around why anyone would want to send me anything for free.
When PR parcels arrived back in those early days of my blogging journey, I would get so excited and would be thrilled with whatever arrived … and I seem to have lost that. I think a big part of my problem at the moment is social media. I used to use Instagram just to let people know that I had posted on the blog. Then as I started to post more photos and gain more followers, it started to take over.
These days Instagram has turned into a bit of a monster. Thanks to the algorithm change, it has become more competitive than ever. I reached 22,000 followers in about two years and now I just can’t move past that number. I refuse to buy followers or use bots, and it is frustrating to see those who do use those tactics succeed. I follow lots of other bloggers and I have found myself being too caught up in what they are doing. My PR packages stopped being as fun as I was comparing what I was sent to what X, Y and Z were sent. A sort of arrogance has kicked in and I don’t like that – I am so grateful for what I am sent and I need to show that more.
Over the last year, I started to take blogging more seriously. I went self-hosted and I started to view it almost as a business rather than a hobby. This was a big mistake, as it stops being fun. I will be 35 in November, I’m overweight, short and I don’t look good in a bralette and mum jeans (sorry but I seriously HATE mum jeans). I’m not as pretty as I used to be, and my hair is a mess most of the time, so I’m never going to be the blogger that brands want for campaigns. And do you know what? I am absolutely fine with that.
I don’t want to be the cookie cutter blogger posing outside some random’s front door trying to pull off that moody looking pose. That isn’t me. It has never been me. I also don’t feel the need to arse lick a stack of PRs or ingratiate myself into some sort of blogging pack. Some days I feel like blogging is very much a young person’s game, but then I think about the plethora of women my age and older – they deserve to be able to read about beauty from someone they can relate to. I don’t want to read a skincare review from a 21 year old – sorry. I want to know what products work to disguise my lines, cover up my eye bags and make me look 5 years younger. So from that point of view, I do still have a place in the blogging world.
I realised that I was spending so much time on Instagram seeing what everyone else was doing, that I stopped enjoying what I was doing. I became too focused on my numbers and on PR packages that it sucked all the fun and passion out of blogging. I am in a few comment pods and I think it’s time I left them too – I want genuine engagement from people who do actually care what I have to say. If that means my pictures get less likes and comments, then so what? Blogging can quickly start to take over your life and I don’t want that. I want it to be part of my life – one part of it.
I have been doing a lot of thinking over the last few days about whether I want to continue, and the answer was Yes, I really do. However, things need to change. I need to go back to what I love, and that is the blog. Don’t get me wrong, I will still be posting on Instagram, I will probably still get in the odd Twitter spat or two, but my focus has to be the blog.
YouTube is posing me the most difficulty at the moment, Views are way down, and some weeks I just don’t have anything that I really want to film. I was always so strict about uploading every Sunday at 5pm that I was putting up videos that even I wouldn’t want to watch. Over the last few weeks, if I haven’t wanted to film, or haven’t been able to film, then I haven’t. I’m never going to be the next Zoella so I don’t need to put pressure on myself.
As most of you know, I have severe endometriosis and spend most of my days in a lot of pain. I have sat and filmed videos and put on the happy face when I am in agony. As soon as I turn the camera off, I burst into tears. Where’s the fun in that? So from now on, I will film when I want to. If that means a video doesn’t go up for a couple of weeks, then so be it. The world will keep turning.
I could go on and on about all of this, but this post is already quite long, so I will wrap it up. In short, this is how I want my blogging to be going forward:
* Focus on what I am doing and not others
* Spend less time on Social Media
* Appreciate every item that I am sent
* Engage more with genuine followers
* Film on days when I want to and am well enough
* Remember why I started doing this
Have any of you fallen out of love with blogging recently?