Through following bloggers on social media, it becomes clear just how much hard work running a blog is. The majority study or work full-time alongside the upkeep of their website, which in itself becomes like a work commitment. You are a writer, a social media guru, a photographer, and editor all in one. You need to constantly create new and interesting content, sift through sixty photos to find that perfect shot, and negotiate with any brands who may approach you; it's like running your own small business. All this hassle, but for what? What would you gain from starting a blog? The stresses of life have led me to be quite self-reflective recently, especially over this site. I've questioned why I should bother running it anymore, why we all rush to get that lip gloss review out first. Here is a little list of reasons why you should start a blog, or if you have one, why you should keep on going.
1. For the love of writing.
I have always loved writing. Since I learnt to read, I would absorb myself in books, often boring my little brother by constantly reading to him. I adored writing short stories, and begged my mum to create little writing-related tasks to keep my mind occupied during the summer holidays, while other kids went out to play. There's something beautiful about the written form of expression; how you can move, inspire and connect with people through a series of letters. Blogging is simply an extension of that. By creating a blog, you've constructed a platform through which you can express yourself and reach out to other people in the process. Throughout my time at university, I've seen my writing improve so much because of blogging, and it has truly helped me when writing essays, for example. For me, if you love writing, it's a natural step to create a blog.
2. If you have opinions.
The bloggersphere is full of countless humans with countless different views on countless different things. From debates surrounding feminism, to whether you need the new Benefit eyeliner, everyone seems to have an opinion on something. So why not get involved? Share your thoughts with like-minded people, or open your mind to the other side of the argument. Your opinion on a topic may open someone else's eyes, inspire them or help them in some way. Your view has value, so why not put it out there for people to read? Who knows what change you and your blog could bring?
3. Community support.
The main reason I started this blog again in May 2014 was the sudden, overwhelming urge to speak out about my trichotillomania. Suffering from a relatively unheard of and misunderstood illness made me want to write about my experience of it in order to inform people, raise awareness and find my place within an online trich community (which I previously had no idea existed). I've spoken to so many amazing fellow sufferers who are all in the same boat as me- whether struggling with the disorder or on the road to recovery, and found that I am not alone in my experience. Rooting yourself within an online community full of supportive people, going through the same thing as you or simply sharing the same interests, is incredibly beneficial to both you and those you can help in return.
4. Catharsis and self-development.
Having a rant, writing about a personal issue, or simply expressing yourself on a topic you're really passionate about is surprisingly cathartic. Not only do you get to express yourself in an eloquent, insightful manner, but a lot of the time you will find people agree with you or something you're saying. Again, after I wrote my first post about trichotillomania, I felt relieved, as if a weight was lifted off my shoulders and as though I'd done something beneficial for fellow sufferers by speaking out. It wasn't something to be ashamed of anymore, and the online responses I received then and have done since have confirmed this even more in my mind. A blog can be a great platform to simply get things off your chest and re-affirm your sense of self.
5. Passion is key.
Whether it's a big topic, or something seemingly small and stupid, everyone is passionate about something. From baking, to music, from travelling to knitting, we all love something. Being passionate about a topic or thing is a great, and allows us to channel our emotions and develop interests. Blogs need to be based on passion, else they will probably fizzle out and you'll lose interest quickly. Passion allows your blog to be in it for the long term. Not only this, but you can discuss your interests with like-minded people- I know many people who have formed great friendships from blogging because you both have that one thing in common. Basically, if you really, really love something, blog about it, because you don't know who you'll meet along the way or what doors will open for you.
What points would you add to this list? Why did you start a blog?