I Blew This Blog Up Twice. Will it Happen Again?

Photo by Niclas Gustafsson on Unsplash

We all dream of something bigger than our day job.

I fixated on what this thought meant to me daily — down to every obsessive detail. Instead of the mundane, I wanted variety. I wished basic meetings for basic priorities led to discussions that were more creative and fun. I envisioned my days to be a bit different than the same.

I imagined the possibilities beyond some simple desk job. I mean, who doesn’t?

Daydreaming about my alternate reality was a depressant to remedy the uncertainty. It fuelled much of my intent to begin this blog. And I did so — twice.

Key word: begin.

How It Began

In 2021, I shared the same predicament as all other recent college grads: What the hell do I do now?

I graduated and got my degree. Until this point, much of my conscious life consisted of academics and studying. How do I suddenly switch up a routine that has more or less existed since my introduction to numbers and shapes?

Well, it was surely something I had to figure out myself. A global pandemic made opportunities and resources scarce. I knew a job that offered stability and a living wage would be no easy feat, either. As a collective, we continue to face this.

And the hopefuls who aspire to lead a career as a creative? I figured it would take longer to get there — I believed that to be so between every word I typed and, especially now, still kinda do.

Writing is something I’ve found continual success with. Fiction, commentaries, poetry — you name it. That’s what I’ve been told, anyway. And yes, I suppose I can acknowledge that I have created some things I am proud of, even when my inner critic will suggest otherwise.

As I grapple back and forth with creativity and confidence, I have learned a vital thing:

Knowing your natural abilities is the easy part. But we don’t always know how to use them in a way that brings out the best in us.

Writing It Out

On my first attempt at this blogging thing back in January, I wanted to feel better about myself.

It was a new year. I haven’t done much of anything since last spring. My previous six months were mostly spent on saying rather than doing.

So, what did I decide to do for my first blog post?

Write about this very thought.

Deadlines. Guilt. Procrastination. I went on a 3-minute rant about how my priorities were a mess. How I still didn’t have a concrete grasp on being consistent with my personal projects.

Now, was there anything wrong with publishing something like this? I don’t think so — no lie was told. But looking back, it exposed something about me that I wanted to repurpose:

I used the post as nothing more than a venting outlet.

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

My favorite aspect of art is seeing how it evolves. Whether it be a standalone story, a musical artist’s discography, or a documentary piece — I like when I can witness how a person’s perspective changes over time. Learning what’s new after every revelation.

We lose interest when the script becomes repetitive. If nothing happens to occasionally shake things up, it becomes just another thing that exists.

And this isn’t even considering an audience’s investment — rather, it first concerns ourselves.

The Problem

I’ve launched many projects, but I could never keep the ball rolling with all of them. This is because they already served their purpose once I hit submit on the first installment.

Venting through your creations is a beneficial way to heal and express yourself (I mean, I’m pretty much doing this right now). However, I realized I shouldn’t have to build an entire brand around it if it quickly runs its course. Fixating on one insecurity shouldn’t need to be imagined as a book series. Not if it doesn’t forward the plot — or in simplified terms, adds anything new to what you have already acknowledged.

I could have kept the momentum going with a new article and a new topic back in January — but another dilemma emerged:

How was this going to get me anywhere?

My blog didn’t die the first time due to making peace with one nagging concern. I felt like it needed to go somewhere.

You feel pressure to make “good use” of your time. Social influences on the outside often convince us we should.

And at the same time as this blog, I worked close to 60-hour work weeks. I didn’t want to spend my little free time on a think piece of my current woes.

Photo by Andreas Klassen on Unsplash

By the time I achieved more of a work-life balance, I was ready to blow the blog up over a few skills I had a foundational understanding of.

I figured leaning toward marketing would get me somewhere. I thought maybe one summer of observation and getting a taste of the trade would equip me for a successful start.

But, just like a pyramid scheme: it felt too good to be true. And because I gained no traction, I left before I felt obligated to continue.

I am not implying I was running a scam. Nor am I saying my aim for a marketing-themed blog wasn’t the way to go — because maybe, to some degree, I’ll revisit similar themes in my writing.

After all, an online presence is all about “selling” yourself and your content — whether you think of it that way or not.

Conclusion

The fact of the matter is that I wasn’t being true to myself. What had been a decent idea in January was scrapped for something that looked better but wasn’t better for what I feel aligned with.

Maybe my alternate reality isn’t here yet, but I sure as hell wouldn’t be living it anyway if I kept up a blog appearance that felt forced.

And worries of the future aside — I’m content with where I am currently. Growth truly is a gradual experiment.

Writers write from experience. Professionals showcase the best of their skills based on experience. My decision to nuke this blog a third time is — indeed, from my experience.

We all rely on experience to learn and grow. That’s how developments and the most remarkable breakthroughs are established.

If I can do this, I plan to stick around a while longer.

Note to self.

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Olivia Ohlson

The best stories are told from your own experience. Here's some of mine. Stay in the loop 🔽 https://linktr.ee/OliviaOhlson