Anybody who blogs can remember your first post, second post and the empowerment you experienced. The empowerment I felt after leaving behind a career of fifteen years in the corporate world to pursue my dreams as an entrepreneur and being free to write about what I wanted to write about was beyond words. I remember getting those little butterflies as I hit send and would wait to see if anyone read those early posts. I still remember the first nice man who commented on my first blog post, “Go Big or Go Home“.
It was such a breath of fresh air from the corporate high tech, late night spin sessions, writing corporate speak, helping top executives spin their decks and personal platforms for the latest high tech craze of the dot bomb era. Oh those were the days and I wouldn't trade them for anything.
However, when I took the driver seat behind the keyboard of my own blog, the freedom was indescribable. I found that the more I shared about myself and my own personal feelings, the more people read and followed my blog. The same went for Twitter. The more I shared of me, the more they followed, tweeted, retweeted, talk to and inspired me. It was truly my readers who empowered me to be me.
For me, blogging came easy. I have never been a woman short on words. It's crazy to think I started this blog just over a year ago. I started with our agency blog. It was my readers who pushed me to having my own blog, separate from the agency. It was crazy the result once I made such a step. In less than a year my blog made it to the AdAge Power 150, Technorati Top 100 Small Business and more. I am not telling you this to brag, but telling you this because you can do the same thing. However, you can only do it if you speak and blog as “you” not what the world wants you to be.
Stuck in a rut
Over the last few months I have hit a couple walls in regard to content. I think as a blog becomes more successful with it comes additional pressure to write about certain topics and make the “crowd” happy. I don't usually let the pressure get to me as I am a strong believer that blogs are meant to include real opinions versus be a digital piece of collateral for me to sell you on my business or spin my content just to get rankings and traffic.
Yet, without thinking I let the “me” fall out of my last couple months of posts. I am not stating I didn't still try to rock out the best content I possibly could. I am simply stated I hit a wall and was not able to crank out as much content as I could before, because of the “pleasing” mentality.
I made the mistake of falling prey to the mean bullies who have commented and informed me of how I was using social media or auto follow tools that I didn't know existed. Yes, I had one guy literally tell me that I use such a tool. However, that's a whole other blog post in itself that I am not going to give such person the glory of spending the time to write myself.
Our business is growing like crazy. We're going global, going deeper local and rolling out a whole new and enhanced set of services. With such craziness I have to admit I got lazy and started taking the easy way out by writing the content that is more likely to please everyone. Yes, the blog traffic is doing great considering I have only had time to write maybe one to posts a week. However, I am not as fulfilled as I should be after I write and post a piece.
A Wake-up Call
Margie Clayman– who is a member of one of my Tribes on Triberr has had some blog posts lately that just nail this topic and the importance of being yourself. It was Margie who helped me realize I had fallen into such a trap of pleasing versus blogging. After reading her latest post lastnight “Sorry, But I'm Not Taking Sides” it really hit me. Thank you Margie!
It is one of my favorite things about being a member and proud supporter of Triberr. Because I read every post I tweet from each and every tribe member it opens my eyes to other insights, opinions and hearts I might not take the time to hear or feel if it wasn't for such. It is the original vision that Dan Cristo and Dino Dogan had when they started Triberr. They wanted to give the “little” guys (and gals) a chance at more eyeballs. I have so loved seeing people's business and blogs soar as a result of their hard work. So Triberr and all my Tribe mates I want you to know that even if I have been an overall bad tribe woman lately with such little time to spend with you, please know you still are helping me grow and I appreciate you. I hope I am doing the same for you!
Taking my blog back!
So from here forward I am going to take my blog back. I hope you still come read. I promise to still post all the content you like, need and ask for. However, I am also going to carve out more time for the content I like to write, even if it ticks you off.
For those that know me you know I welcome a good debate. I have met some amazing people via the social world that started off with a heated debate that I am proud to now call friends in real life.
I am not asking you to hold back your opinions even if they completely disagree with my thinking. I am asking however, that you do so in a way that is respectful to me, our community and yourself. Don't pretend to know the tools that I use, the tools I don't use or the reasons I keep or delete my connection to any influence measurement system, social network or blogging platform.
I will do as I have always done which is tell you the truth and back up my opinions, claims and recommendations. I hope you like them. However, if you don't, then don't read them. There are plenty of other blogs you can read and hopefully find one that you like and can support versus simply finding blogs to pick fights and gain attention for yourself. An even better recommendation would be to maybe start your own blog or start blogging more to focus on your own voice and community building.
I also ask that if you see me starting to hand my blog back over to the bullies and status quo pleaser crowd that you please call me out on it, please! I promise I will do the same to you. Deal?
What are your thoughts? Do you stay true to yourself on your blog? Have you ever fallen into such a trap for a season or two? When you hit writers block is it maybe for the same reason, that you have lost yourself somehow? I would love to have a healthy and forward moving discussion on this. I think we can all help one another stay true to the reasons why we started our blogs in the first place while still providing value to our readers.