So over Christmas, I took a blogging break. It was lovely and well needed but also, in a way, very nearly catastrophic for me.
I came back to my senses at New Years and realised I needed to sort myself out to get posting again.
I then had a moment, (well several), where I was blank.
Just… absolutely blank. No ideas. No motivation. I knew I needed to start writing again to produce the posts I needed. I knew I needed to refill my social media buffer to get back on the scene and go looking for the linkys I had been a part of before the break.
But for whatever reason, I just sat there staring at my laptop thinking ‘what can I write about?’
I was gripped with that awful, universal fear that all bloggers, writers, journalists, novelists etc must share at some point or another. I had run out of things to write about. This was it, just six months into blogging, my well was dry.
For a moment of horror I honestly thought that all the hard work I’d put in, all the hopes I’d had were going to be wasted. I was going to fail and let my blog wither and die and be forgotten, like so many other failed projects over the years.
I decided not to panic. Instead, I went to Pinterest, my usual source of inspiration. I started pinning and slowly but surely, I started to see ideas that were appealing to me in an ‘I’d like to put my own spin on this’ or ‘hey, they’ve addressed this side, but what about that?’ Kinda way. And that’s when I knew, I wasn’t defeated yet.
I managed to start writing again. I made a few posts. Then I thought up a few more. It’s still slower going than it was before, but that’s due to a lot of other things. One thing I have learned from this, though, with absolute certainty: I am not going to abandon my blog.
I thought for a moment about giving up in a serious, ‘what would this mean, what would I need to do, what would I lose?’ capacity. I thought about logistics and renewal prices and those things. It only took a few minutes from this thought popping into my head to me dismissing it forever.
When I thought about giving it up I felt a deep pang of almost-grief. I knew that my blog was a creation that I had poured so much of myself into, that I genuinely loved. It just wasn’t an option. That was when I started writing again and almost immediately felt like a fool. Of course I hadn’t lost my ability to write! Of course I hadn’t run out of ideas!
I have so much more to say.
I have at least another two or three ebook ideas in my head! (And that’s just non-fiction!) And Frugal Living for Lazy People is still selling!
I felt, for a moment, a sense of guilt that was only overshadowed by a sense of shame. How could I even consider giving up? How could I doubt myself like that and actually think about throwing away my creation?
I felt like hiding my shameful thoughts somewhere deep down inside. Where no-one would ever know the terrible truth. Where no-one could ever suspect my weakness.
Then I realised, how many other bloggers have probably felt exactly as I did in that moment? How many people in general, on a venture they loved but proved to be too hard/vast/time-consuming/expensive? How many have walked away and felt like they had betrayed themselves, carrying regret with them?
No, I had to give voice to this moment of weakness, for those who feel just like I did.
I read somewhere that for every person who asks a question, there are ten more behind them who wanted to ask the same thing but were too afraid.
How many of us have talked ourselves out of something only to regret it later, and for what? Fear? Doubt? I bought a lovely little planner a while back, only for the quote on the front:
‘She believed she could, so she did.’
And it really is that simple.
This post began life lamenting the struggles of writers’ block, and became something so much more. A rallying cry for those of us who struggle to believe in ourselves. A reassurance we are not alone. And a reminder that no matter how much you may doubt your ability to do the thing, just do the damn thing anyway, you’ll be surprised how competent you really are.
That is why I won’t abandon my blog. That is why I will never run out of things to say. Because when I start to write something wonderful happens and no matter what I’m writing about, I love myself in that moment. I believe in myself when the words are flowing and I want, more than ever, to tell the people out there just like me, that they can love themselves too.