The first thing I realized is, I do NOT always have to be “on” in life or on my blog. Some days are stress filled and overwhelming and it is OKAY to step back. Stepping back in life will give you a chance to breathe and get a better view of where you want to go and how to get there. If you are always on, your creativity slips, you become stale and you will lose your voice. Don’t push content out just to have content….. Make what you write and say in life meaningful. You know the old saying, quality over quantity, its true! If you want your blog or life to mean anything, to be of any substance, focus on quality.
I have fallen victim to “must produce to grow” syndrome many bloggers feel. And let me tell you, as I look back at some of the stuff I have put out there, I see where I could have done better. Now I am not saying be a perfectionist, but do take the time to let an idea stew and get better with time rather than throwing it out there like fast food slop. I always tell my oldest, take pride in what you do. Ya know what? That goes for me too! Saying “good enough for government work” shouldn’t be acceptable.
So how do you find your voice? Stop listening to everyone else’s! Stop comparing yourself to everyone else. I am in my opinion, a homesteading blog. I started writing this blog to encourage others to try new things, no matter where they lived. But ya know what? There are a LOT of homesteading blogs and we all cover a lot of the same material, really, I’ll admit it. I am not the only person to ever on God’s green earth raise mealworms, tap a maple tree, or make my own bacon.
I used to peek around and see what others were up to, what was successful in bringing in readers, but then one day I just said “screw it.” Ya know what? I have a lot less stress! Seriously, I do not care what other homestead bloggers are writing about, or how successful they are. I have realized that there are no hacks or short cuts in life and if I just keep putting out content I can be proud of, I will find “my people” and grow. Here are a few important things to remember in life and blogging:
1. Don’t follow others
2. Don’t imitate others
3. Don’t care what others are doing
4. Don’t compare yourself to anyone
5. Learn to be okay with YOU
That’s right! Pick up your drum and march to YOUR beat. Focus on YOU and YOUR voice. Find what makes you happy, what makes you tick. Love what you do or write about otherwise your voice will get lost or die. Yes, I said die.
Creativity is a process…. You know where you want to go, but trust me, the journey is not always straight. Getting to your creative destination is like taking a walk through the wilderness, with valleys and streams. Half way to where you thought you were going, you get flustered and just want to throw in the towel. Trust me, I know! I have projects sitting half done because the journey kicked my butt. I will kick them back someday, when I am ready. This goes back to the whole, quality over quantity issue. I could have thrown them out there, but I can do better! I expect that of myself. I can admit it as well.
People or blogs who walk around perfect in the eyes of social media are full of the stuff that comes out of the south end of a north bound chicken! Trust me, I ain’t one of them, and I prove it daily on Facebook! But that is part of my voice…. Silly, brutal, no holds bared, look behind the curtain of my life honesty. And I realized THAT is part of my voice, it is what draws folks to my blog and me. It is what sets me apart. I blog to encourage others to try new things for themselves no matter where they live…. So why would I hide that fact that sometimes, things just don’t go right?!?!? It is a part of homesteading, it is a part of life, and it shows others they are not alone.
So why am I rambling on, talking about finding you voice in life? Because weather you blog or not, being true to you, producing the best “whatever” you can, really does lead to more happiness. And don’t we all want more happiness? I know I do! Success comes with hard work and an honest voice. I think I have already been successful in encouraging other, but I know I can do better! So this blog may be a little quieter as I find my new stride but I am always over on Facebook for daily doses of(mis)Adventures.
I want to encourage anyone who reads this take some time and really think about what you want your voice in life to be, your legacy so to speak. I also want to point out, we are all works in progress.... (mis)Adventures happen!