This month marks a little over a year since the idea came to me for starting my own blog. During a very intense period of journaling, following my depression and burnout, I would find myself writing the types of articles I share on here now. I was inspired to move beyond my little Barnes and Noble 5’’x 7’’ notebook and start sharing my thoughts on productivity, time-management, and balanced living as I knew I couldn’t be the only one whose days were so full they were bursting at the seams. So far it has been quite the journey, at times in some very unexpected and rewarding ways, other times not so much. I am incredibly proud of having built the site practically from scratch (although those WordPress themes have been a lifesaver). I learned a bit of code along the way, how to utilize plugins and have immersed myself in topics that I had never even remotely understood or cared much about like SEO and social media marketing strategies. At times I recall asking my tech savvy husband for help, only to end up watching YouTube tutorials and reading countless articles to solve a particular website issue myself. I know I still have much left to learn but at least now when I log into to post something I don’t cringe at having to solve yet another website-design related issue, as these have largely ceased to exist.
Even after writing for this long, it still feels kind of odd to consider myself as a blogger. I know that having a side hustle is the ‘in’ thing so I know I am one of millions of people doing something similar. At times it feels very comforting to blend in among the many self-help blogs out there, other times it’s frustrating to check the Google Analytics and see that no one has visited your page in over two days. Rather than become discouraged when that happens, I am continually inspired by the highly successful blogs I visit on a regular basis and the writing itself is incredibly therapeutic.
One unexpected downside has been just how damn often I’m on my phone and on computer these days. I literally used to not touch my laptop once I got home from work and now it feels like I’m constantly getting pinged about a comment notification or a new follower on Twitter. I will admit that since starting the site, especially in the last few months, a lot of mornings I end check my email first thing. I’m not particularly proud of this habit and I also don’t think the constant phone checking is healthy for my relationship, although my husband has never mentioned it to me, possibly because he is so enthralled with playing video games on his time off that if I’m scrolling through my Twitter feed next to him on the couch he is not really going to notice that I’m on my phone.
The biggest adjustment has been living the actual truth of what one is writing. I know that I’m not perfect so even though I can write an article about not sending emails to your boss on the weekends, occasionally I may still send an email. I do try to be more intentional about moments like that although some days are better than others. It doesn’t feel right to espouse certain behaviors as worthwhile and then neglect to incorporate them into my own life. I think this is why I have been somewhat more likely to engage in healthier activities, like training for my upcoming 5K and doing meal-planning on weekends to ensure I’m not just hitting the drive-thru after work. And while writing blog posts may now be my new digital journal in a way; I still do relish those moments, especially on quiet weekend mornings when I can take my coffee to my front porch, sit on my swing and write using good ol’ pen and paper whatever comes to mind. Regardless of how much content I generate or how many clicks any one post has, I hope I never stop doing that one thing that started me on this unforgettable journey.