Let’s Dust This Blog Off
You may have noticed recently that things have been a little quiet around here, or, at the very least, things haven’t exactly been regular. I noticed a little while ago that I didn’t want to pick up the camera as often as I did, didn’t feel the need to write about the products and fashion I love as much as before. Everything ‘blogging’ became a bit of a chore. Emails built up, tweets went unscheduled. I simply just lost my mojo.
The ‘pressure’ to be a blogger in 2017 is very, very real. I felt pressure to run six different social networking platforms effectively and all at the same time. I felt pressure on where and how to promote my blog posts or videos. I felt pressure to participate in chats, to be constantly engaging on Twitter and Instagram, whilst also thinking of new content, writing out that new content, photographing it, scheduling it, promoting it across social networks alongside trying to eat, sleep and socialise.
Simply, it all became too much. I started to obsess about numbers, about whether I was good enough. I was making myself angry when I missed a posting schedule. Basically, I had been wrapped up in this blogging bubble for so long, it just burst and left me feeling a little empty.
So, what did I do? I took the break. I went back to the drawing board. Pinned inspiration on Pinterest, watched my favourite content creators, fell back in love with simply reading blogs. As I kind of expected, it didn’t take long till I was on my bedroom floor, setting up flat lays again, or using VSCO to picture my new Instagram feed, it didn’t take too long before I was logging back into my WordPress dashboard, ready to write. Here is how I got my blogging mojo back where it belongs.
Allow The Break
The pressure to not let your content slide, not miss a post, not miss a tweet can ultimately lead you to push out content you are not one hundred percent behind. Since I started blogging, I have learnt that unless I am one hundred percent happy with a post (allowing the thought that there is always going to be room for improvement, of course), the kind of happy that makes me want to shout from the rooftops “please come and read my newest post!!!”, it does not get posted. I have got countless amounts of posts sitting in my drafts that whilst I want to share the topic or the photographs, they are not up to my personal standards yet. And I will not post them until they are.
But forgetting that pressure, as hard as it may be, is incredibly beneficial in the long-run. When I was really suffering from writers’ block and thinking all my photography was blooming awful, I simply switched off from it. I did not think about and found other ways to fill my time. I read, I started a brand new series on Netflix, I focused on my job. Allowing the break allows your mind to re-focus and it resets your goals and ultimately, absence makes the heart grow fonder.
Allow Yourself to be Inspired
And by this I mean, simply look for inspiration wherever you go. Not just for a new blog post or Instagram picture. Find what inspires you generally, find what makes your heart beat that little bit harder and in time, you’ll find it helps with all areas of life, including blogging. For example, the other day I was in London, I hadn’t been in forever the last time I was there, I was concentrating so hard on looking for the perfect Instagram spot, or where I was headed, I did not take the time to really look around. I love London, it has hidden beauty everywhere, I love the architect, the way the red buses contrast with the grey and white buildings and I just love London life and fashion.
When I was last in the hairdressers, I had my hair bleached (oops) so I knew I had a good half hour of simply sitting whilst it worked its blonde magic. Instead of scrolling down social media, I let myself flick through a magazine. I had completely forgotten how much print inspires me. I regularly turn to bloggers for fashion, forgetting that magazines often have great picks as well. Print isn’t a new outlet at all, but it was another place to get inspired that I had forgotten about.
I have also gone back to reading my favourite blogs. I think sometimes when you blog yourself, you can get so wrapped up in what you are writing about that you can forget how many incredible content creators there are out there. A few of my current (and long-time!) favourites include Josie, Victoria, Olivia and Chloe. (I’m always on the hunt for blogs to read – please do link yours below!). Seeing other bloggers put out incredible content definitely got me feeling all inspired and motivated.
Have a makeover
You may have noticed that SimplyAbbi looks a little different than when you last saw it. I loved the way my last blog layout looked. It was simple, clean and let the content really do the talking but I had started to grow a little bit tired of it. It was too simple and craved an injection of personality. So, I had a little makeover. I jotted down my ideas and a little mood board in a notepad made myself a cuppa, and got to work.
We all know that Pipdig is incredible which is why his blogger themes are some of the most popular and widely used in this industry but it does mean that there a lot of bloggers all sporting the same theme and I desperately wanted mine to stand out a little more otherwise I feared all the blogs using this theme would start to blur into the same. I started off by adding a touch of pink, which is girly and fun and then I went ahead and completely re-designed my homepage. I made it neater, I made it easier for you to navigate and I added a little about me. It ticked all my boxes I felt were required by a blogger – easy navigation, easy to see social links, a little about the blogger and of course their posts. I also tremendously improved my shop page and also all my social branding. I love it (I hope you do too) and it immediately made me want to start posting again. In fact, it was quite amazing how a little re-fresh really kick-started a boatload of motivation.
Once I had had my little break and completed my makeover, instead of diving back into writing and photographing, I wanted to have a little brainstorm, or even a braindump, somewhere I could store all my ideas, thoughts and newly gained inspiration. Using the notes app on my phone, I simply typed out everything going on in my head in regards to blogging. Post ideas, photography props and set-ups, layout ideas, different things I could implement on social media, etc.
Blogging admin definitely can take a lot of time and whilst I certainly don’t mind doing it, it can sometimes take over and the creativity side can get a little lost but just my brain dumping everything that was swirling around my head, I was able to put those ideas somewhere I could return to them and add to them. I was able to get them out of my head, somewhere where I wouldn’t forget them and it’s almost as if this then gave me the brain capacity to get on with the not so fun blogging admin, but still, have all the ideas and inspiration for the fun creativity side.
Since doing this even just the once, I have decided that this is almost a necessity for me and something I plan to do often. When it all gets too much, I’m just going to brain dump it. I now have a gazillion notes in my phone of different ideas and things to remember, it’s incredibly handy and let’s be honest… I nearly always have my phone physically on me, so whenever I do get that burst of creativity and inspiration, I can quickly type it out and return to it when I have the chance.
Remember Why You Started
Finally, simply thinking back to why you set up your little corner on the internet can be the biggest tool in kickstarting your blogging mojo. I did not start to become a full-time blogger and I did not start to earn loads of money. In fact, I did not even know that was possible. I was simply a 17-year-old girl who was just starting to really get into makeup and wanted to document the products I tried and what I thought of them, in hopes of helping other young girls just starting out like me. Remembering that, and remembering that the main function of this blog is to help you out made a world of difference to my motivation. After all, what is the fun of trying all these new amazing products and clothes without telling loads of people that I love them?
Doing this also made me realise how far I had come too. I might not have a million followers or subscribers, or even the swipe-up feature on Instagram (though I really want it) but my personal development is insane and I have lovely readers who do come for a read or to listen to me natter over on Youtube. This blog has given me the confidence to share my advice and life experiences with you, share what I love and quite frankly, put myself confidently into the online world. All. By. Myself. I am incredibly proud of the platform I have single-handly created (of course, with countless help along the way) and that is more than enough reason to keep writing and sharing, no matter how hard it can sometimes get.
I would also like the take the time to give a huge shoutout to Jess. Copper-Garden has been one of my favourite blogs for years and it has been truly wonderful to watch her and her content grow. Her latest video, Things Are About To Change | Copper 2.0, was what hugely inspired me to stop feeling down and out about my blog and give it the upgrade it needed, big thanks to her for sharing her thoughts on development, it helped insane amounts!
What is your number one tip for getting back your blogging mojo?
Thank you for reading!