My Year of (Not) Blogging

A year ago I became a blogger. Or so I thought. It’s tough to admit but what I actually became was a hypocrite desperately seeking validation in the opinions of others.

When I started epistoleary, it was to be a place where I could “share my experiences with other women.” What I actually meant by that was tell other women how to achieve success through abandoning perfectionism. I had the answers and I was prepared to share.

The only problem with my magic formula was that I didn’t have the answers. Not only that but I hadn’t achieved the ultimate goal of abandoning perfectionism. I started my blog in the hopes that it would become a wildly successful website and that I would quickly, and easily, earn an income from it. If I helped people along the way, it would be a bonus. Even at the time I knew that wasn’t the right reason to start a website but I didn’t care. A year later, I’m ashamed of myself.  Just writing this is making me cringe.

As with anything, motivation matters. I didn’t have the right attitude toward blogging and it showed in my meagre output. In the end I posted 14 blogs over the course of 12 months and one of those was a guest post by the fabulous Jenn Baxter. As far as I can tell, I only impacted one person. A lovely woman emailed me after taking an email course I offered called Overcoming Impostor Syndrome. She had some kind feedback and told me that, although she slipped up from time to time, she was excited to continue on her journey out of perfectionism.

And that’s it. That was the sum total of my year of blogging. I wasted money on software I never used and grew to hate the blog so much that I just stopped posting. I even let my web hosting expire because I had become so disillusioned with the whole thing.

I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. I started epistoleary when I did because it’s what I needed in the moment. I didn’t do anything with it because I wasn’t ready. For better or worse, my objectives weren’t clearly set out or authentic to me in any way.

That changes today.

Today I am recommitting to epistoleary. I have taken down all the content from the previous year that doesn’t resonate with me. I’ve also unsubscribed from all of the email lists which send me daily tips about growing my blog readership or capturing email addresses. I am no longer interested in conversion rates. It didn’t do a damn bit of good when I was reading those emails religiously so why bother with them? All they do is stress me out and drive me toward being somebody else.

Today I choose to be myself. Whether I have one reader or 10,000, I choose to be myself. I promise to only post content that I believe is genuinely helpful or thought provoking. I will not post for the sake of posting. If you want to subscribe to epistoleary, you’ll get emails when there’s a new post or when I have news to share. That’s it. I don’t want your email address so that I can tell the world how many subscribers I have or so that I can send you useless information. I only want it if you find value in the content at epistoleary.

One of the traits I admire most in others is authenticity. I know that word has become trite through overuse but I mean it. I love men and women who are genuine. They know themselves and aren’t ashamed to say, “This is who I am. Love me or don’t, I’m not changing for you.”

I want to be one of those people. When I started epistoleary, it was a money-making scheme. Today I am baring all and recommitting to this as a place of discussion and reflection. There won’t be any catchy titles like “5 Ways to Instantly Improve Your Life” or “The Only Thing You Need To Achieve Success.” We live in a time of instant gratification and I think we’re losing respect for the grit and hard work required of the journey. We cannot find happiness instantly. We cannot find success overnight.

My promise to you is to be genuine and to respect the journey. I hope you’ll join me (again)!

Until next time,
Aileen x

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