Please don't be tooo hard on me. Let me explain myself and you'll see where my mind is at and maybe we can still be friends. Deal?
As much as I love writing and sharing my life with you guys, I let the my unrealistic expectations and comparative tendencies change this experience into something I never wanted it to be.
This blog was supposed to be a special place where I was just me without worrying what anyone else thought about it. A place where I could share my thoughts and projects and life and just be the person God made me to be. I knew I would learn more about myself and maybe change in some aspects of my life as I starting really analyzing my thoughts and putting them down on "paper", but I didn't want those changes to be a result of covetousness.
So that brings me to the point, I have always had a problem with comparing myself to others.
My parents and family have always done a great job of encouraging me and making me feel special so I'm not sure where this feeling came from, but it is definitely there. At times, I just let my low self esteem and doubt creep its way into my mind without realizing it. It could be something like feeling pretty just to see someone with thick beautiful hair and suddenly I hate how my hair looks. Or buying new decor that I'm in love with but then seeing someone else's well decorated house and now I feel like everything in my house needs to be re designed.
I know this is kind of a common thing now days and might seem petty, but it something that I have been trying very hard to eliminate from my life for a few years now. I have gotten much better about loving myself and being content with all the wonderful things we are blessed with.
I focus on the positive things and push out any negative that tries to get in the way. It's hard to think about how awesome someone else's kitchen looks compared to yours when your focusing on how very blessed you are to even own your own home when so many people don't have that luxury. But I'm human and recently those old feelings have been coming back to refocus my attention on the negative.
These feelings have now started affecting my blog in two ways:
1. For the past year or so I have poured my heart into this blog. I knew that I would probably not have many readers and that with so many talented bloggers out there I had little chance of becoming a known blog with a solid following. I would be lying if I said I had not thought about the idea of one day blogging as a career but I knew that if that were ever the case it would be many many years from now. I just wanted to get a taste for it and see if I was even any good at it. This blog was just for me and I was ok with that.
But then I started investing time and thought and work into this blog. I spent hours on fonts and codes and picture editing. I was so excited with what this was turning into and started really having a desire to share it with people to see if they would like it too! I didn't really make it public for a while. Partially because I felt a little scared of what people would think and partially because I wanted to be sure I would stick with it. I'm a little notorious for starting things I don't finish.. But I came to a point where I felt I had solid material people would be interested in so I started putting myself out there. Through Facebook, Pinterest and word of mouth I started to actually have page views. I felt liberated and excited to get some feedback.
But very little came. I had no comments, short page view times and a broken heart. I hadn't expected to suddenly have a fan club or anything, but I guess I just wanted validation that what I was doing wasn't crap. The more I blogged, the more obsessed with stats I became. It turned into an unhealthy habit and instead of focusing on the joy the posts were supposed to bring to me, I was disappointing myself by constantly thinking of how bad my blog must be to have no readers. Eventually it became more of a burden than a release.
2. I originally thought this would be a DIY blog. I read so many wonderful DIY blogs and have always preferred making something myself instead of buying the more expensive version. Since I was already doing so many DIY projects, I thought this would be a no brainer. I've read you have to have a niche to be successful and this would be mine.
But then life got in the way. I had to put some projects on hold. New exciting things were going on that I wanted to share. And suddenly this blog became a whole lot of puppies and travel and reviews and not a whole lot of DIY.
This didn't bother me so much until number one above happened. I then started thinking I had to come up with the next super original and totally awesome DIY project if I wanted people to read what I had to say. I had to give people what they wanted and I had to be perfect if I wanted readers. So although I had plenty of travel posts lined up, I put them on hold. I already had so many travel things on this blog that I just new I had to wait for the perfect DIY project before I could post anything.
The problem is that time, money and a poor attitude didn't allow for any new projects. I struggle enough with getting the house clean, bills paid and homework done on time. How would I ever be able to whip out several DIY's worth blogging about? Not to mention the creative block I had driven myself into.
I starting spending so much time reading other blogs trying to figure out how they did it. What things did they have that I needed? Of all the coveting I was doing for this blog, I think comparing myself to other talented bloggers takes the cake. I remember reading Mandi's blog over at Vintage Revivals and thinking, how on earth can one person be so incredibly talented and creative? I can replicate a project like no ones business but that girl comes up with things I have never even dreamed of. Why can't I be like that?? Silly, I know.
Now that my mind has cleared I totally realize that there is no way I can I compare my babiest of blogs to that of a mega blogger like Mandi. She and most of the bloggers I follow have spent several years and lots of work to get to the point they are at. I just let it get the best of me and let doubt ruin what I had spent the last year building.
So its been three months of reflection and three months of putting myself in check. This blog was meant to be an outlet and to be a place to share my thoughts and ideas no matter how many readers that gets me. And I know that in time, I will become a better blogger. I can't be so hard on myself and expect to know it all right now. I just have to enjoy the journey for what it is and work to grow along the way.
From now on, this blog will just be about life and sharing fun or useful things with you guys. Whether that means recipes or DIY or puppies or product reviews or Italy, I am pledging to be true to myself and just share what is on my heart without worrying about any dumb niches or if it will bring in lots of page views.
I will be content with the wonderful life I have been blessed with and will not compare what I have to someone else.
We all are blessed more than we give credit too. We focus on trying to get or be all the best things without being content with what we already have.
We all have something unique to offer that we cannot find by trying to mimic others. They world has only been blessed with one of you and you owe it to yourself and to us to shine in this world as an original.
Freedom feels so good! Am I right??
I hope that by opening myself up to you guys and sharing all my ugly imperfections I can maybe help someone dealing with the same things. In today's world it is easy to put the "perfect" you out there on blogs and facebook and insta without ever showing anyone the real person you are. I challenge you guys to accept and love yourself and be the real you! It's so liberating!
Here's to new and better months ahead you guys!! Looking forward to all this fall has to offer!!!