Have you ever noticed how it’s generally successful people who advise you not to compare yourself with others? I hear it a lot lately and it’s really annoying me! When I hear someone with a hundred and seventy thousand Instagram followers and a blog with an income good enough to support their family, spout quotes on their popular podcast such as “Comparison is the thief of joy”, do I think, Oh yes, that’s really good advice, thank you for that? No I do not. I swear out loud and stick two fingers up at my computer.
I hesitated as to whether to share this horrible, ugly side of my personality here, but then I thought, Sod It, no-one’s reading this anyway(!)….
There is nothing I hate more than reading about or listening to interviews with successful bloggers who say something along the lines of ‘It all happened by accident really. I was just blogging for myself and then it all took off.’ My heart seethes with bitterness that I know is of no good to me what-so-ever. I usually have to stop, take the dog for a walk and sob my heart out. Another one is, ‘I suppose I was just lucky – I started blogging seven or eight years ago when blogging was just starting out.’ I started blogging thirteen years ago and I never got that luck. Why not? Why not me?
My friend Lorraine is made of 100% kindness and she would never think thoughts like this. She’d just be happy for the other bloggers and wish them well with their success. I strive to be more like her, but I think there is something ingrained in me that is just horrible. I don’t want to take away their successes, but I selfishly want a piece of it. I almost feel I deserve a piece of it. I’ve invested so much time and heart and soul into this blog; I think my writing is fine, my photography is fine (I think both are actually more than fine, but I don’t want to come across as egotistical as well as bitter and twisted), so why doesn’t anyone want to visit it? Why do blogs with lazy writing and borrowed photographs get fifty comments? I’ve seen paid-for articles that are so bad I wonder how they can ever get away with it. If I was actually given money to write about something, I’d put so much effort into the piece and be proud of it.
I begrudge less the people who have obviously worked bloody hard on their blogs and it’s no wonder they made it in this business. However pretty soon those nasty thoughts creep into the back of my mind and I think, Well I worked bloody hard too, so again, why not me? Last year I put my clothing business aside to really make a proper go of it. I blogged three times a week and every day in October; read as much as I could about how to grow your blog and followed all the advice. I even bought a Creative Live course on blogging. And at the end of the year, how much did it all help? Not one little tiny jot!
You can probably tell that I’m writing this in a bit of a mood – a bit of a huff! I love blogging, I really do. I love the crafting of sentences; the re-reading and editing to make sure I’m completely happy with my writing. I love the process of taking photos to go with the piece and to help tell the story and tinkering in Lightroom until it’s just right. However, is there really any point when no-one is seeing any of it? Is it worth the effort?