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What to do when you think you have blogger burnout
Have you reached your breaking point and think you have blogger burnout? Oh how I can related.
My introduction to blogging: “Wow! I am self-employed, and I can be my boss! I can quit my day job and make ten times my income in just one month! YES! Sign me up!”
Fast forward four months. Checking account says I have spent hundreds. The bags under my eyes say I am tired. And my swollen legs, back pain, and growing belly say I am sitting too long. I don’t know what the heck to call what I’ve got. There is no keyword for it. I am just going to make one up and call it blogger burnout and anxiety. Let’s just have us some outstanding working women talk. Admit it. You need it just as much as I do. Hey, I am just going to keep it real. Ladies, we have to get back on track here.
1. Stop believing everything you read
How many times have you looked at the headline on a Facebook news article post and were shocked? And then you believed it only to find out it was fake news? All of the expensive blogging courses you see that advertise you are going to make all the money you can imagine are not openly sharing the facts.
- You are not going to make $10,000 in one month as a new blogger
- Most bloggers who generate wealth from their blogs flopped their first time around
- What works for one person does not always work for another
- If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is
I am not suggesting generating income is impossible. I have earned $82.60. It is definitely possible.
What I am saying is that there is so much information and so many people advertising for the same things. While it is true that there may be value underneath all of the headlines, be the one who finds the diamond in the rough, and that takes lots of searching. Don’t stray from your goals or what you are looking for because the easy money headline caught your attention. More times than not, you will be disappointed.
I said all that to to tell you blogging is hard work. There is no easy money no matter who tells you that.
2. Define your own success
Why did you start blogging? There was something you were passionate about. Maybe your passion was just to make money. Perhaps it was to help people, or perhaps it was to help yourself. Whatever the reason, define what success looks like for you and not how someone else’s looks.
I was working with a client one time, and I was very hard on her. I wanted her to be successful. One of my coworkers asked a question that I never forgot. She asked me, “Nancy, what does that meant. What does that success look like for you?” It sounds like a pretty simple question, right?
I learned a valuable lesson that day. Everyone’s idea of success is different. So when you are scrolling along and find people talking about how much money they are making from their blog, don’t define your success based on theirs. Honestly think about what success means to you.
In my success book, there is no greater success than happiness.
Think about that question for a little while and remember it as you follow your journey. If there is something missing, address it because you will get blogger burnout if you don’t.
3. Google is not the boss
Google is not your boss. You are your boss. We hear so much about traffic, SEO, keywords, and how everything impacts our rankings.
I get it. I am guilty of allowing Google gremlin to suck the energy out of my creativity. While it is true that there are things we have to pay attention to, don’t allow Google to dictate your writing style. Everyone searches on how to do this and how to do that. How do you do that as a creative writer?
I am still trying to figure that out. But, if I look back at where I was when I first started, I have come a long way. And so will you.
4. Find yourself an imaginary friend
I met a cool lady who has an awesome bloggers group called Boss Chics. Maybe you have heard of it? No? You haven’t? Check Ashley out at The Rich Girl Blog and join her Facebook group. Remember what I said about not believing everything you read? She is the real deal. I have learned so much from her about keywords, SEO, blog content, and a lot of other blogging things I never got from anyone else. She is a genuine person who cares about people doing well. She is a successful affiliate marketer and sincerely wants to help people.
Oh, I almost forgot. You are probably wondering why my heading says, “find yourself an imaginary friend.” Ashley laughed at me one day and her husband walked by and was wondering why she was laughing at her imaginary friends.
Yeah. Get you an imaginary friend. We all need one of those. Mine is pretty cool and the laughter helps break up the day. Blogging friends are great friends to have.
5. You are not your competition
I will share a story with you. When I first entered the field as a therapist, I worked with a woman who had 30 years of experience. Her clients loved her and respected her.
I wanted to be just like her.
I couldn’t understand why it was that I was doing everything she was doing, but my clients hated me.
I was not her, that is why.
We all have our own personalities and great things to bring to the table. No matter how hard you try, you are not going to be someone else. Just like it takes time for therapists to find their own genuine style, it takes time for bloggers to find theirs.
Learn from someone. But don’t beat yourself up because someone else is getting 10 million readers a day. I promise you that it took them time to get there, too. Don’t try to be a rabbit when you are only at tortoise status.
6. Stop staring at the computer
Walk away. Go shower, eat , or watch a movie. Play with your kids. Do you laundry. Read a book. Do anything but sit and stare at your computer from the time you wake up until the time you go to bed.
Nothing will lead to blogger burnout faster than trying to work around the clock. When you find yourself starting at your computer with brain fog, it is time to walk away. Your computer is not going anywhere and neither is your blog.
Well, at least I hope not. I mean, after all, you did pay for your website
7. Stop writing crap you don’t want to write
If you don’t want to write it, then don’t. Not only am a I blogger, but I read blogs. I have no interest in reading blogs that are robotic and just like everyone else’s. Be the diamond in the rough and stay true to yourself.
If you don’t want to write it, then don’t write it. It will come across your blog as ingenuous. And it definitely will make you resent blogging.
Resentment, by the way, is a sign of burnout. I am trying to save you from yourself.
Don’t do it.
8. For God’s sake, be patient
Rome was not built in a day. There is entirely way too much to learn to try to do it all in a day.
I got some great advice from Lani from Restored 316 themes:
For now, I honestly recommend not trying to swallow all of this at once. You’re trying to conquer years with of information in a very short amount of time. Kinda like trying to build a house from the roof down. I give you permission to back off of some of these items. I know bloggers that have been blogging for 5-6 years and still don’t understand SEO, yet they are doing just fine. They know they’ll get there.
For now, focus on content and one or two social media platforms. That’s it! Don’t worry about SEO just yet or affiliates.
I have taken her advice. It was the most comforting blogging advice I have received.
10. Take breaks to avoid blogger burnout
The sign for me that I needed a break: I stopped taking the time to make my breakfast and morning cup of coffee. Imagine all the things I had already let go of in life blogging before I got to that point.
My legs got swollen, my back hurt, and my belly got bigger. Sitting in a chair all day is not healthy for us. And when we are unhealthy, it is difficult to enjoy creating.
For your health and your mind, take breaks. Whether it be to go outside and breathe in the fresh air, do some yoga, go for a drive, run to McDonald’s for a Diet Coke, give your kids hugs, take a hot bath, paint your nails, do your hair and makeup, or whatever it is you love, just do it.
If you are tired, take a break.
If you don’t know what to write, take a break.
If your body aches, take a break.
If you are discouraged because no one read your post, take a break.
If you are feeling drained of energy, take a break.
And sometimes those breaks may need to be for a couple of days or weeks. It is okay. There is no rule that says you have to work yourself to death.
11. Balance your content and your life
It gets boring writing the same types of content over and over. It helps me to change things up sometimes. When I feel inspired, I write a story. If I am struggling with ideas, I play on Canva and make pins. Sometimes I will write instructional or information posts because they don’t require as much creativity. I was really sucking at life one day during our social distancing for COVID19 and wrote Uncensored Truths About Self Care.
After writing that article, I realized we can change things up and that it breaks up the monotony. I had been in a funk for a while and letting my hair down to do something different was just what the doctor ordered for me.
Balancing life so you don’t get burned out
As a therapist, I talk to clients all the time about lifestyle balance. Think about lifestyle as a tire on a bicycle. The tire is mounted on a set of spokes. What would happen if you rode a bicycle that has missing spokes on its tire? You would fall off the bike.
If we don’t balance work, family, social life, mental health, physical health, and spirituality, we are going to get blogger burnout. If we draw a picture of a wheel and its spokes and label them with
- Mental health
- Physical health
Which one of your spokes is missing ? Why? What goals can you set for repairing it?
We all fall off our bicycles sometimes. But lifestyle balance is probably the most important factor in bouncing black from blogger burnout.
12. Go for the singles and not the home runs
“But I want a home run!” Of course we do! Guess what, though? That player on first base eventually scores a home run.
If we start out small and take one step at a time, we have the opportunity to celebrate many small successes. I want it and I want it now syndrome isn’t going to help a sister out. It is going to lead to blogger burnout.
Why not go for the home run right away? Because it is wonderful celebrating successes and less wonderful feeling failure. You will be less overwhelmed.
Despite others’ insistence I focus on writing content, I spent two months trying to make my website beautiful. Did I make it attractive? Sure. But it wasn’t my home run. My home run is a website with content people love to read again and again.
Blogging is hard work and we do get blogger burnout. We get discouraged when we don’t get traffic. We work endless hours for free and do not quickly get results we want. But, it doesn’t mean we won’t get there. But during our journey, we still must take care of ourselves.
Being organized is essential to blogging. I had to break down and buy a planner. Since I am in love with everything Restored 316, I purchased theirs and I am in love. Since it is a website business specific planner, it is perfect !
Whatever you do. Don’t give up. When that little Google Gremlin starts telling you that you can’t do this because it is too hard, just shoo him away. He is annoying.
Best wishes on your journey.