I have been writing here for about 2 years now. I initially decided to start this blog with the same intention as a lot of other bloggers: impart knowledge into the world on a certain genre. For me, that was yoga of course. I wanted to spread the LOVE, PEACE, HARMONY and what not. I didn’t (still don’t) expect a full-blown career out of blogging. My goal isn’t to gain 1000s of followers and become a big presence on the web. Although, I am convinced that my domination of the internet-yoga world is impending.
However, despite me not wanting to become some huge internet yoga sensation, sometimes I get caught up in the stresses of social media.
Initially, I did not publicize my posts up on Facebook because I didn’t want to come off as self-involved: LOOK AT ME. I AM WISE. SO YOGA. MUCH ZEN.
But, after much grumbling and inner monologue-ing, I decided to post up blog links on my Facebook while trying my darndest to not sound pretentious. I stayed away from cheesy descriptions, cloying quotes and tried hard not to sound pushy. I figured those who wouldn’t care to read would just scroll past it anyway, and those that were interested in learning about yoga, would be able to do..so no harm no foul.
But then, something changed. I would think twice about writing a post a certain way. I would second guess the title, topics, and wordings of my blog posts. “Would this look good on FB? Will I get even 1 like? Is the post too boring? Is it cool enough to be clicked on? Should I add more pictures? Ugh – I only got like 3 views on this one blog post…maybe I should write about something else. Maybe I’m too serious and need to be more of FUN yoga blogger.”
UGH – it wasn’t fun. It’s not easy to avoid these thoughts. A lot of advice for bloggers is counter-intuitive to being authentic. There is so much talk about pushing social media agendas, writing on certain topics that are “popular” and/or “trendy”, and aesthetically pleasing visuals. But, substance is what matters in the end.
Fortunately, I took a long, mental PAUSE and realized: If you’re a blogger wishing to gain popularity, don’t think about social media likes as your one and only barometer of success. It takes away from who you are and what you believe in.
Don’t get me wrong, blog stats are important. The number of page views, likes, comments, all are gauges on the quality of the content I provide to my readers. Yes, I should be creative. I should care to research, edit typos, write well-thought out sentences and pay attention to the grammar, diction, tone . I should strive to provide value to my readers.
But, if I were to write on topics with the sole goal of gaining popularity and pleasing others, I cannot write with authenticity. The quality of my blog posts is directly related to the level of heart and conviction I have for each post I write. Content is king for a blog. I know for a fact that I can’t write well on a topic that is safe, and like-inducing. Trust me, I have tried. Those blog posts are quite banal. Interestingly enough, the posts that have the most amount of likes, are the ones where I felt strong emotions writing them. It’s a no-brainer as to why that happens.
People flock to reading blogs because they hope to find a piece of themselves in the posts, look for shared experiences, or hope to learn something from someone whom they feel is relate-able. Blogs can inspire, teach, motivate, and cheer up many. Successful bloggers are that way because they are able to connect with their readers. Establishing that bond requires character, zeal, authenticity and passion behind all the writing.
Being true to who you are and your beliefs, brings out the fervor from which passionate writing comes from and with time, practice and mindful editing: good blog posts come. Don’t be swayed by what social media says. Be you. Write to what speaks to you. Your fans are out there…if you build, they will come.
Thanks so much for stopping by and reading.