Perhaps you've noticed, or perhaps you haven't, but I've barely blogged in the last six months. I could make excuses, as we have just bought a house, after all. And if you've gone through the process of searching for and buying a property, you'd know it's a pretty stressful and time consuming process. But, if I really wanted to write on this blog, I would. I'd make time for it, the way we always make time to do the things we love.
But each time I sat down to write, I felt bored with every word and all my sentences fell flat. Why would anyone bother to read what I’d written when all the information they could ever want about a destination is already available by bigger, more impressive blogs and businesses.
I had gotten into a bit of a blogging funk.
(sometimes all it takes is a walk)
Yet I still felt guilty about not publishing. And it wasn’t just my own blog I was neglecting. I stopped reading all my favourite blogs too for a while, about 20 people whose blogs inspired me to start my own. I just stopped caring. It didn't help that due to spending a year working hard to buy a home (and no longer be at the mercy of a landlord who wanted to do monthly inspections) I had to sacrifice my travel funds, and writing a travel blog when you don't travel is damn hard work.
When I began my blog, my goal was to inspire, to write stories, share photos and get people out connecting with one another as fellow human beings. It’s easy to drift away from your original goals when you see other bloggers (who began the same time as you) absolutely crush it in the blogging world.
But the thing we have to remind ourselves constantly about social media, is that people tend to paint a pretty rosy looking picture of their incredible lives on Instagram or Facebook, because it’s in their best interest to make lifestyles look as incredible as possible. It's how they sell their products.
Blogging burnout (known commonly as creative burnout) affects anyone who pushes their creative output for an extended period of time without giving it the nourishment to replenish itself. Sometimes it’s a little hard to identify, because it starts out as just not ‘feeling like it’ and that happens pretty often anyway. But the days and weeks and sometimes months pass and you’re still not ‘feeling like it’. That’s when you have burnout.
(my last trip was to Napier, about a year ago)
Fixing blogging burnout:
Absorb the work of others. Visit art galleries, check out blogs unrelated to your niche, read novels. I found that enjoying the work of others helped inspire me to think outside the box.
Know that you’re not alone, all people who create for a living feel this way at some point. It's not the end, you just need a break.
Get creative in a different way. If it’s writing that’s not working, focus on photography, get cooking, draw something. Find a new outlet, it might be just what you need for a couple of months.
Take the pressure off yourself. Its fine to take a break. Don’t fight the writer’s block, lean into it and know that it’ll run its course.
Don't force yourself. Get away, get out the house, do something unrelated and get some exercise.
Go back and look at your early work. Whether it’s to see how far you’ve come, or to remind yourself of your original goal and what you hoped to accomplish when you set out.
Forget about it all. Close this tab, shutdown your PC and know your blog and readers will be waiting for you to get back.
Know that your blog will still be there when you get back and you may be surprised to find that it was if you never stepped away.
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