At the beginning of lockdown and being furloughed, I felt like I finally had an opportunity to focus and spend time on my hobbies, especially blogging. However, something was stunting me; I was unable to publish my ideas, articles, and images, and it wasn’t due to lack of time like I had originally thought.
Some of the things I’d like to write about are shunned or instantly dismissed. Some things feel too personal to share. I wasn’t sure at first if the writers block came from those or that I ran out of inspiration, but somehow I don’t think the latter was it. I think it was fear of judgment, and wondering what people might think if they read it.
I’ve never had any trouble with being myself in front of people. I’m one of those people described as ‘what you see is what you get’ – annoyingly, I might add, I want some mystery! I’m honest about my thoughts, I don’t worry about being judged for thoughts, ideas, theories and opinions. That’s what I loved about having a blog in the beginning; I could find people that related to all of those and more.
Over the years, social media pressure has become increasingly powerful. Again, I thought I had managed to avoid this, never succumbing to everyone else’s ideals. However, my opinions became unpublished drafts due to concern over backlash from more mainstream thinking or diversion from what seemed to be an accepted narrative. No longer could I ramble honestly, but unbiased, about what was going on in the world and discuss things openly in the comments. Now it feels like we have to be much more careful. Don’t get me wrong, careful is good. I was always careful. Not to judge, not to cause upset, not to share biased views. This careful is different though, it’s careful not to say anything that could be taken out of context, or shared in groups that are after just that very comment. It’s being careful that your opinion is not against the general louder or more popular opinions you see online.
I started questioning my content too much. What was okay to share, what might hurt or offend others, what I even wanted to write about. One way to stunt creativity is to question it too much. I’m not sure what this post is getting at exactly, but I do know why I felt so stuck. I was busy worrying about others, and torn between making this blog more commercially viable or keeping the personal touches. I have decided to post exactly what I want. Whether its wellbeing content, reviews, lifestyle, hot topic discussions or anything else I can think of.
This is my personal space and I have to stop quieting my own voice – I have enough people to try and do that for me! Being yourself online is difficult, but it feels much better than living in fear of repercussion for having a voice. I hope the people who read this blog often are glad that I’ll be back to it, and I hope the people that don’t enjoy it leave me to write freely.
Have you experienced anything similar with a blog or social media posts? Do you worry about what you post more than you used to?