Life in the Fast Lane


The Struggle Is Real

By 11:11 AM , , ,

Once upon a time, the Internet was a friendly place for bloggers. And I say "friendly", because everyone was invited — whether you had a LiveJournal, Xanga, Blogspot, and even Angelfire (admit it: in all likelihood, your header consisted of beveled and embossed words!) blog.

Because as long as you had your own home on the Internet, and used words and photos to tell a story, you were a blogger.

Back then, you wrote whatever came to mind and whatever was in your heart. Did you have a craptastic day? Go ahead and document every single moment, even through bullet points, leading up to what made your day so sucky (to use very late 90's to early 2000's terms). Did you want to spew poetry, in free verse, vague fashion? By all means!

Nowadays, people feel the need to curate their own social media accounts: from the uniformed look of their Instagram feeds, to their thoughts on Facebook (must be share-able and worthy of reactions!), to their Snapchat posts, and yes, even their blog entries. Because there are zillions and zillions of blogs out there, and as the trend of micro-blogging continues to grow, people just don't have the time nor the interest to go through paragraphs upon paragraphs of content, especially when there's nothing that interests them.

Photo from here.

Therein lies the dilemma of today's blogger — to ensure that his/her blog stays not only relevant, but interesting. How does one achieve this? By finding a niche on the Internet, the same way marketing and advertising create a need for consumers.

Are you a believer in homeschool education, and based in rural Philippines? Most likely you will create a following of parents or educators who'd love to learn about your DIY-esque methods using available resources. Or have you created the latest watercolor calligraphy trend? People would love to learn your method and try and modify it to suit their styles. Or are you an athlete with a health condition who constantly overcomes his/her challenges? It would be interesting for any reader to relate to your struggles and be inspired by your victories. Or do you always shop with a P500 budget, and create everyday chic looks that people can take inspiration from? It's almost 100% certain that people would visit your site every single day with almost Pinterest-esque frenzy to use your outfits as pegs.

Photo from here.

It seems as if people are not as relevant or interesting if they blog about a hodgepodge of topics. I'm not saying that their blogs are completely irrelevant, or that they won't get as many visits; they may very well be inherently interesting people to begin with, or have a unique way of writing that makes it compelling to follow their posts. But in all likelihood, those whose blogs are single-minded in their topics or posts will likely have a solid following because their followers purposefully read their posts to get something out of them.

I guess this is why, for people who've been bloggers since blogging's infancy (like me), keeping up with today's trends may be daunting, or even tiring. Now, everyone has to find a way to keep their followers hooked on their blog (unless, of course, they blog simply for themselves, which can actually be very freeing).

Photo from here.

I actually don't know where I'm going with all this — HAHAHA! — but I guess it's my way of rationalizing why I don't blog as often, or with as much passion these days. There are days when I look at my blog and seriously think about what I can write, and come up with nothing. So I click on the "X" button on my browser with a firm resolve to come up with a good topic another day, only for the cycle to repeat itself.

Sometimes I wonder if I should just create another blog, like my food blog, which will talk about specific topics, i.e. the struggles of being a triathlete with a day job, but it's also terrifying to start from scratch. So I keep coming back to this seven-year-old blog, finding ways to constantly refresh it.

Perhaps I'm saying, after all this rambling, is that I will try even harder to keep blogging — if not for my "readers" (it's odd thinking that I have any), but for my own writing sanity.

Because at the end of the day, unless you're actually paid to blog, one should first be happy and at peace with what he/she writes, before pleasing an audience.

And maybe this is the first thing I should work on.

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  1. I feel the pressure too. I just recently published a new blog post since after a year and it's a review. I have attempted a lot of times before where I stare at the compose box then type something but it always end up in draft, unfinished then forgotten. I enjoy coming back to your blog every now and then and read something inspiring. Keep it up Tina. XD

    1. Hey, Earl! Nice to hear from you! Will look up your blog now. :) Thanks for dropping by every now and then!


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