Why you should blog for yourself and how to do so.

Ebb and flow, ebb and flow. Like I said that’s how my mind works in terms of blogging topics. Some weeks I can hardly come up with a single post and others inspiration almost jumps at me on every corner. The latter has been the case for this post which you’ll notice so let’s not wait any longer but think out loud.

Let's talk

We hear it all of the time as bloggers: first and foremost you have to blog for yourself. And most likely we rolled our eyes a little at least one of those thinking “tell me another story – everybody wants clicks and readers!” It’s one of the big [and hard to process at the beginning] lessons every blogger has to learn. Those frustration-filled first months of blogging when nobody will read and much less comment. Or only your mum, friends and relatives. I’d be lying if I said quitting hadn’t sounded intriguing at times back then. What ultimately kept me going was my passion to write and too many thoughts in my mind needing an outlet.

Now I’m not one of the “big” bloggers so can in most cases only talk from my perspective as an observing reader. But then again it’s for readers’ pleasure we write and even as bloggers we’re part of somebody else’s audience every day, too, so it’s a topic everyone can chime in on. Here are my [obviously subjective] ideas on how to fuse writing for yourself while also for readers:

Time and blog post frequency: Writing when you’re not feeling it doesn’t work. Plants, animals and humans all need water to grow and flourish. A blog requires its author’s brain to be a source of inspiration. If the latter doesn’t flow [good, enjoyable] posts don’t happen.

If you’re a mum, busy working in a full-time + job or lead a stressful life due to any other reasons post as often as works and feels good to you. Unless jobbing is indeed your job it should add joy not stress to your life.

Easter_flowers on the table

 

Product Reviews and sponsored posts: That’s something that occasionally gets me annoyed when visiting other blogs, at worst it makes me quit reading a blog for good. Let me stress that there’s absolutely nothing wrong with these posts to begin with . Integrity’s the keyword again.
I get that a) it’s exciting when a brand reaches out to you for a collaboration or b) you’re a full-time blogger and depend on making money from your blog. However, there should be a limit to how many and which offers you accept. At least for myself I can say I’ll visit your blog less and less the more inauthentic product reviews I see. If your readers know you as a recipe blogger how in line with this image is promoting ladies’ hygiene products [aside from the fact you might be lady but never talked about these things before]? Or if you’re into healthy living but all of a sudden declare your life-long fondness of a popular brand’s sugar-laden cereals? #sponsoredpost

Recipes

Confession time again. This specifically has been on my mind for a while and was one of the reasons to write this post. It’s no secret recipes are what draws us to blogs. We all like to talk about and [I don’t like using this word myself but will replicate it due to popularity] drool over food. Knowing what’s popular in the healthy living blog world I was tempted to let others’ preferences lead my recipe creations and – for a second or two – considered if to get into that no-bake ball bite game. However, that wouldn’t be true to myself. I’m simply not rolling – literally – that way. As nutritious as they are I simply don’t fancy these and luckily there’s no lack of other delicious foods to create and share.

Cauliflower Nuggets_vegan

Blogging niches

Then there’s the other side: Let’s say you’re – like many of us – a healthy living blogger. Naturally, you deliver dozens of delicious recipes for flourless cookies, oil-free fries and green smoothies containing every superfood known to man**. But maybe you still enjoy a good cheese-filled enchilada casserole with – the horrors! – white flour tortillas once in a while. To post or not to post said recipe? Yes, yes and yes! Because while some people might be surprised to see this kind of dish on your blog there will likely be just as many [or more?] readers who are all up for it. Seeing that hey, that girl/guy has balance down to a pat, doesn’t let a label define her and is likely very fun to hang around.

The same would go if you’re usually a [insert niche] blogger but feel the urge to get your thoughts on a topic dear to your heart but not conforming with your niche out there. I’d say go for it because these posts are what truly shape our blogs to be a representation of who we are.

**please note I’m not actually hating on any of these foods. Mmmh, cookies.

In the end, blogging for yourself is blogging for your readers. Because they come back to find out what you think, create, like, dislike, your quirks and funny stories. Not for you pretending to fit into a certain mold of paleo/clean eating/smoothie drinking/running/lifting bloggers. What all of this comes down to is one statute will always lead any choices I make related to my blog – be it in terms of topics, recipes, sponsored posts or reviews:

Writing the blog I want to read. And I hope it’s one you enjoy reading, too.

 

 

Happiness-inducing today: Another spontaneous after-work walk with my dad and winning another game of yathzee. Hello, lucky strike [not of the smoking variety].

Stay in touch!

Twitter: @MissPolkadot21
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living

 

No specific questions.  Let me know any of your  thoughts on the topic!

 

15 thoughts on “Why you should blog for yourself and how to do so.

  1. Julia @ Lord Still Loves Me says:

    LOVE your mentality toward blogging. I think it is too true: we have to say honest to who were really are if we ever want our blogging to feel like a safe place for ourselves to come to. I love my little corner of the internet, and I’d never want for it to turn into something inauthentic.

  2. Lyss says:

    Love your mentality towards blogging and I agree with a lot of what you said. i get annoyed by lots of sponsored posts too! I love when people write about what they want to write about and don’t worry about pleasing others/the amount of people that read their blog or comment. Blogging should be something to make you happy. Love this post🙂

  3. Morgan @ Managing Mommyhood says:

    I just wrote a post sort of like this about my experience with it. I’ve found that when I tried to write how I thought I was SUPPOSED to write, I saqw a lot less traffic. Once I started writing about what I was more passionate able, myblog has begun to to grow. It’s so interesting how that works!

  4. Amanda @ .running with spoons. says:

    Couldn’t agree with you more about the importance of blogging for yourself! I think readers can tell when someone is being inauthentic, whether that be through sponsored posts or writing style or even putting on a happy face when they’re really not feeling it. I’ve tossed a bunch of blogs out of my reader over the years because they started doing way too many product reviews or each of their posts felt incredibly disjointed. And while I know it’s tempting to want to accept everything that comes your way and grow, grow, GROW, I think it’s important to remember that you had a brand/image to protect, and that you need to stay true to you first and foremost.

  5. Erin@BeetsPerMinute says:

    I struggled with blogger identity (and still do at times!). I’m writing more as a job these days, so I only write about what I want and though I worry about vacant days (or weeks) on my blog, I agree, we shouldn’t post when we’re not feeling it. I admire that some bloggers always have something to say, I just don’t at times. Great conversation to start!🙂

  6. Kate Bennett says:

    Yeah, I don’t have the time to try to write about things that I don’t really care about. Fitness for example. Yes, I exercise, but I find reading fitness post to be the most boring for me. So even though I’m all about that healthy life, I’m okay not talking about exercise.
    I try to show both sides of me, but it is hard to know how I’m coming across sometimes.
    I think these are great points. I’ve definitely stopped reading blogs that became all sponsored.

  7. Ellie says:

    I totally agree! I wanted to create my bloggin niche while I should have let it come organically, which I do now. I am not someone who always has balance or eats all the cookies or green smoothies. Trying to be that was dumb and I lost inspiration for writing. Once I realized that I got more enjoyment and connections from blog posts about my real life was when blogging became more for me. Cheers!

  8. Hollie says:

    I really enjoyed this post a lot and it’s something I can relate too. I’ve been blogging for nearly 6 years now and I’ve seen everything. It’s funny how much it’s changed and the mentality towards not doing anything “for free” or changing your viewpoints for free things.

  9. athleticavocado says:

    I love this! I get annoyed when I see bloggers who only have sponsored posts and don’t even have any engagement on those posts. yes, they are talented, but it seems like they just blog for the money and not the fun!

  10. masala girl says:

    this post is perfect. especially on the recipe niche and sponsored posts. when i see sooo many sponsored posts, its like, they are no writing for companies, not themselves.
    also on the recipes, i feel like i see the same things over and over with everyone post the energy bites/balls. i like when bloggers show honest creativity🙂
    sadly i make a bunch of new recipes, FOR ME, but dont blog them for lack of time.:/ spent 4 hours recipe creating in the kitchen today😀 but after 10 minutes of playing with my camera, exhaustion set in, because i couldnt get it to focus, and into the fridge/my stomach they went! hah
    love your blog🙂

  11. katalysthealth says:

    This is an awesome post girl. I love what you said here “blogging for yourself IS blogging for your readers.”
    Quality content wins on filler content every time. I enjoy reading about someones passions, likes, dislikes, etc. not just sponsered stuff.

  12. Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets says:

    I did a similar post on this topic many months ago and I agree whole heartedly with the message. When you blog for yourself, it comes across as genuine and readers pick up on that. When you blog for others, it starts to become monotonous and routine and the audience can sense that too, and ultimately you’ll lose your genuine audience.

    As you know my food recipes tend to be a little all over the place and definitely outside the HLB norm. I do me and I like it that way. You keep doing you.

    P.S. That cauliflower looks amazing!

    • Miss Polkadot says:

      Monotonous and disingenuous – you nailed it just using these two words. Plus, blogging starts becoming a drag when we try to fit a mold and that makes it feel more like a strenuous job than a hobby.
      Call it out of the norm or whatever but your blog is out of the norm in the best way possible. Those pregnancy posts alone are golden.
      P.S.: Did I unconsciously try to win a prize for most -ous words used in sentence ;)?

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