Guest post by Laura Booz. Have you noticed the explosion of mommy bloggers bustling about with loads of reviews, giveaways, tips, and encouragement?! I’m one of them, with my two blogs pumping out advice for young mothers. We are one enthusiastic bunch of bloggers, that’s for sure. Readers are gaining so much support and inspiration from the thousands of mommy bloggers.
Companies are throwing money in our direction because mommy bloggers are influential powerhouses. Conferences are scheduled all over the world to help us write better, earn more, and establish social media platforms. We’re glowing! Nonetheless, I’ve discovered a secret that will make us all even happier.
(If you’re not a mommy blogger, I want you to stick with me here. You’re going to discover some application points for your own blog, because you are not just “a blogger”. You’re a political blogger, a daddy blogger, a book blogger, a craft blogger, or a something-else blogger and you don’t want to miss out on this secret to success.)
For the purpose of keeping things real though, I’m going to write specifically about mommy blogging. We mommy bloggers have 3 big things in common:
1. We love the craft. Becoming mothers didn’t stifle our love for writing, but actually made it stronger. We have delightful subject matter now! It’s far more interesting and much cuter than some of the topics we slugged through in high school.
2. We love the opportunities. We can sit at home while babies nap, and befriend women all over the world with good will and support. We can make a buck or two with a few side-bar ads. We can review free products, entertainment, and vacations simply because others care what we think.
3. We love the diversion. I love being a mother, but I will be the first one to admit, that blogging is such a nice escape from the daily tasks of motherhood. A blog post is a finished product. Motherhood is not. Writing is quiet. Motherhood is not. Typing is neat and tidy. Motherhood is not. And, even on their best and worst behavior, readers can’t pull on your heart strings and fill you with concern the way your own dear children can. Sometimes it’s just nice to close the door and blog.
But, at the end of the day, we can get so wrapped up in the benefits of mommy blogging that we miss out on our priority – the mommy part. We become “blogging mommies”, and no one is happy with this flip-flop. I’m the first one to plead guilty on this account. For the sake of my blog, I write about topics that drag me down, cancel my daily run, forget about dinner preparations, shoo my children away, ignore my husband, and fail to plan memorable family times. I find myself wondering, “Why on earth do I let this go on for days and days as I transform into a zombie, and as my family and friends clamor for my attention?”
I’ll tell you why. Because I lose sight of the magnificence of life. I lose sight of my husband who works so hard, and saves the day over and over again. I lose sight of my children who giggle, and ride bikes, and crawl into our bed when the sun comes up. I lose sight of my friends who stick by me, swap child-raising tips, and share a PB&J while our kids run around in dress-ups. The truth is, my real life is worth infinitely more than my blog. Even the frustrating days that make me want to eat a pound of chocolate and watch a movie with my head shoved under a pillow, have a better return than tweeting my work, updating affiliate links, and writing a post about the peaceful home that doesn’t exist today. Regardless of circumstances, my real life is always sweeter than my blog.
So is yours.
That’s the secret.
If you want to be a happy blogger, prioritize YOU. I’m not just being corny or sentimental. I really mean this, and I believe it is profoundly true. Invest your affection on the other side of the screen, and both you and your blog will thrive. Relentlessly protect the life-experiences, the family and friends, and the stuff you do that shapes your powerful messages, quirky jokes, and memorable snap-shots.
With a little meditation, we can all come up with strategies to do this well. The #1 thing that helps me to live authentically and blog happily is an Online Budget. I evaluate the hours in my day and all of the things that are worth my attention. If I only have one hour available for blogging, so be it. My blog will be a one-hour-a-day blog. It might not pay off the mortgage or catch the eye of thousands of readers, but it’ll be as top-notch as I can make it within that time frame. I’ll divide that hour up into portions so that I can write posts, respond to comments, solicit guest posts, and work on other projects. When the online stopwatch buzzes, my time is up. Sometimes the sacrifices sting and I wish I had more time to accomplish all of my online dreams, but I’m confident that I will not regret my choices in the long-run. To tell you the truth, I’ve found that when I am investing in the “mommy” part, I have much more to offer as a “mommy blogger”, even if I only have twenty minutes to think smart and type fast.
So, whether you are a mommy blogger or any other type of blogger, I’m sure you get my point. YOU matter. It’s not just the money, the readers, or the platform that require attention; it’s your life and the people in it, for better or worse. No matter how much we prosper from social media, we will be happiest – and our blogs will be of the highest quality – when we invest in the passion that drives us to the keyboard in the first place.
That’s my secret to happy blogging. What’s yours?
Guest author Laura Booz is the author of the new eBook Blogger Behave: Make your blog benefit your life so you can love both!. She lives on a farm with her husband, 3 children, 17 chickens, and a slew of strawberry plants.