Hello! I can’t remember the last time I got on here and just typed. Or gave a family update. It’s weird. But it’s 2019 and I’m wanting to go back to the roots. I’ll explain.
The last couple of years I don’t think it’s been a secret that I’ve hated blogging. It’s been stressful. Overwhelming. Toxic. There’s something about blogging that made me become obsessed with working as much as possible, making as much as possible, and comparing myself to other people in the field and always worrying if I was doing enough. What started as a hobby became essentially a full time job and then some. I started to dread opening my computer and checking my emails because I knew how far behind I was and I wasn’t enjoying the work.
It also became an obsession. I had to keep up my Pinterest constantly. I had to have as many page views as possible. I had to be in as many engagement threads as possible. I had to be doing this I had to be doing that because if other people are doing these things than I needed to be too.
I. Got. So. Burnt. Out.
And here’s the other thing – My whole life I’ve wanted to be a stay at home mom while my kids are young. And in case it’s not obvious, ‘full time job and then some’ and ‘stay at home mom of 3 kids’ aren’t synonymous. What started as a fun hobby and way to connect with people and make a little money from home had spiraled out of control. And once I started making money I started relying on it and then it became harder and harder to quit.
I’d been having these feelings for a while and debating what to do. Then I met up with a small group of local bloggers who I find very authentic and refreshing about a month ago. As always I was honest with everyone about how I was feeling and how I was struggling with this (still). And one of the girls said something along the lines of “yeah remember when blogging was about writing about your life?” And I did. That’s when I enjoyed blogging. When I made no money doing it. When I wrote weekend updates. When I shared stories about what we did as a family complete with pictures largely because at the time my family was spread all over the world and I wanted them to be able to keep up with what we were doing. When it was a creative outlet for me and gave made new mom life less isolating.
So I sat down and thought about what I wanted this space to look like moving forward, because something had to change. Did I want to quit cold turkey? Throw in the towel and shut it all down? But I’ve put so much work into building this and I like looking back on my old posts. I don’t want it to just disappear. So did I want to cut back and still work some? But I’ve tried cutting back in the past and haven’t ever been able to – the work still builds up and is more than I can handle. Or did I want to do something else? Well yes something else was obviously the answer but it needed a little defining. So here is what I’ve come up with…
I’m going to keep up my blog, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, etc. How much? Regularly – or when I can. No stress. But I want to intentionally make this more of my own space. Not just ads and sponsored content. And maybe I end up not posting that often. Maybe I blog once a month, maybe once every few months. At first I thought no sponsored blog posts but now I’m thinking 1-2 a month and only with brands I already love and want to work with, although I’m honestly scared of whether I’ll stick to those parameters or whether it will spiral out of control again. Instagram is easier for me to handle so I’ll definitely keep active there but even with that I want it to be less focused on sponsored content and more about my real life and sharing my real voice. And I don’t want to be constantly doing things to try to keep up with other bloggers. I just want to do what I’m capable of and what I want to do and just be myself. I’m writing this all down here and sharing it to help keep myself accountable and remind myself that I am in control here and this is possible.
And to be clear I don’t mean any disrespect to other bloggers who don’t want to approach it the way I do. I think it’s amazing what some of these women (and men) are doing. I think the women who treat it like a full time job and are killing it are rockstars! There are bloggers out there sharing activities to do with their kids, yummy recipes, and raising awareness of things like mental health issues and they are really making a difference and helping others and that’s awesome. But the full time blogging path is not for me personally at this time and not the road I want to continue down right now.
So if you are still here thank you. Thank you for being here and showing up and following along on this crazy journey. Thank you for your support and your understanding and chatting with me on my Instagram stories. Thank you for encouraging me to keep being honest and sharing funny pictures with me when I say I need a laugh. I hope you’ll stay around and see where we go from here!
Happy New Year everyone! I wish you all health & happiness in 2019!
Tiffany Ching Bean says
I love this Claire!!! You’re an amazing blogger and a mommy! Just keep doing you and you’ll have the best 2019 ever! Xoxo