Yet, here I sit typing away at my own blog. I actually have two now. I started writing Healthy, Green and Frugal in September of 2009 and a year later I started a second one, Raccoon School.
Furthermore, I spend many an evening reading other people's blogs. I guess now I "get it". The barriers that normally divide us - time constraints, physical distance, emotional distance - don't exist in the blog world, and that's why I like spending a little time there each day.
Although I do appreciate the value of blogs - both writing and reading them - I feel compelled to examine their worth in my life. Perhaps I should be doing other things during those precious few hours a day that my children are sleeping and I am not. There's housework to do, homeschool lessons to plan and parenting books to read. Not to mention, I can always use more quality time with my husband, exercise, meditation, and sleep. The choice to work on my blog is a choice not to do these other things.
So what exactly do I get out of blogging?
- Brain Exercise. Dealing with two small children all day tends to make my brain feel mushy. Working on my blog gives me the chance to practice old skills, learn new skills, and get some kind of clue about what's going on in the world of technology.
- A Creative Outlet. There's a meaningful pleasure I get from writing. I know it's not Shakespeare. I make plenty of mistakes, and I'm not always proud of what I've written. Every once in a while, though, I'm able to craft a beautiful sentence using just the right words, and it makes me happy.
- Therapy. Sometimes I'm dealing with a jumbled mess of emotions, and the only way I can unravel it is to write about it. Hey, it's cheaper than a therapist.
- Relationships. Before I started blogging, I wrote a lot of long emails to friends and family. Blogging just seems like a more efficient way to communicate. Overall, I think blogging allows me to stay better connected with some of the people I care about (none of whom I see as much as I would like). I might be kidding myself on this one, though. I don't think the vast majority of my friends and family actually read my blog. ☺
- Community. Blogging draws together like-minded people so that they can exchange information and offer encouragement. It's not always easy to accomplish this in the "real world". Especially when you are isolated at home with two children.
- Learning Opportunities. The process of writing about a topic often presses me to research it more thoroughly than I might otherwise. It's hard to learn new things in a vacuum. Sometimes you need a purpose.
- Income? I know a lot of other bloggers do it, but exactly how they do it remains a mystery to me. I'm always open to this possibility, and I intend to research it more. However, this is not my primary objective. If it's a choice between money and authenticity, I choose the latter.
- Intention, Visualization. Reflection. Blogging helps me to focus my attention on things that are important to me. It helps me set clear intentions and goals for my life, visualize the desired end result, and reflect on my progress. I explain this idea further in this post: Creating the Life You Want: Intention, Visualization, Reflection.
- Advocacy. Blogging is one small thing I can do to help further the causes I support. My intention is to to share information that helps others be more eco-friendly and live a healthier lifestyle. It's not much, but it's the best I have to offer right now.
So, I've thought of lots of good reasons to blog, and I'm convinced (for now) that it is a worthwhile way to spend some of my free time.
One question that lingers is this....
If a woman blogs in the forest and no one is there to read it,
does it make a sound?