Ok, I hear you guys. Especially the guy in the back, all pumped up, ready to write 10 posts each morning, to comment on 20 blogs in his lunch break and rock the world in the evening. I hear what you say: “A blog hiatus? As bloggers, aren’t us supposed to write day and night? Are you I-N-S-A-N-E? “. Nope, as strange as it may seem, I’m not insanse. In fact, I’m better than ever, although my blog activity took a plunge in the last month or so.
But it was a good thing. Ok, “good” and “bad” may have different meanings based on your cultural background, religion, life philosophy and a number of other, possibly unrelated, reasons. Let’s not use “good” or “bad”. Let’s use “healthy” instead of “good”. Yeap, my blog hiatus turned to be a really healthy thing. Without further ado, here’s why.
1. You Need Time To Refine Your Message
If you write each and every day, you may lose sight of the big picture. It’s true, the habit of writing each and every day is an amazing asset. It makes you productive and ready to go whenever you’re hit with inspiration. But at the same time, it makes you repetitive and a little bit anxious. What am I going to write about today? Am I going to be inspired?
I’m sure that each and every blogger hit the “blogging burnout”. I know I hit it more than once. It’s a tough game, that blogging burnout. In my experience, it’s the closest thing to depression I know. It’s like you’re out of options, which, of course, it’s never true. You always have an option, but sometimes, when enough is enough, you just don’t see those options clearly.
As in fitness, the muscle is built during the rest time, not during the effort.
2. You Are Involved In Other Projects
And that’s fine too. During the last few months, two of my projects took the lead. One is iAdd, which grew way over my initial expectations, from a proof of concept to a stable-and-almost-mainstream iPhone / iPad (and soon Mac) app, and the other is my newly born baby, WPSumo. If you followed closely my social media stream, you know what WPSumo is.
But if you didn’t, let me start by saying that this is the biggest project I embraced since I sold my company, two and a half years ago. It’s a wordpress framework packed with tons of features. I’m only one third of it, the other two being taken by two wordpress wizards. We launched last Friday and we’re still pumped up with all the enthusiasm. I will write extensively about this framework in the next few weeks, so stick around.
So, although I’ve been a little bit quiet in writing, my blogging activities were actually enhanced.
3. You Want To Evaluate Your Work
During the last two months my blog had a significant surge in traffic. In simpler words, the number of people who are visiting DragosRoua.com is now constantly in the 120.000 – 130.000 area. And that’s a steady flow, not based on some volatile circumstance. I actually feel that I entered another level.
And this requires a little bit of analysis. I’m not talking only about extracting data from the statistics, although I started to do it more seriously during the last few weeks (and identified some very interesting patterns) but also about my main vision and next steps.
You cannot clearly see where you’re going if you don’t stop every now and then on a higher cliff.
4. You Write Somewhere Else
Exactly, one of the reasons I wrote less on my blog it’s because I started to write more on other blogs. I became a regular contributor to Stepcase Lifehack. Interestingly enough, my first article there, 7 Not So Obvious Habits To Maximize Productivity, got a lot of attention and I’m really happy about this.
It’s a completely different experience for me. It’s one thing to do a little bit of guest posting, and another to be a regular contributor to a mainstream blog. At this moment, Stepcase Lifehack has more than 80.000 subscribers. I am quite enthusiastic about this and I will try a few different approaches and writing styles.
Will see how this goes, but for now, it’s a nice new toy. 🙂
5. You Just Need A Break
One of the biggest traps of personal development is to aim for perfection. Perfection is boring, being better is where all the fun is. So I’m not afraid to admit that I just need a pause from time to time. I’m not a writing machine, nor do I want to become one. Sometimes I just want to leave the work behind and enjoy life a little bit. Or a little bit more.
So, here are the 5 reasons that made my blogging hiatus quite useful and healthy. Now that you’ve read this, go back and continue writing on your blog. 🙂
Running For My Life - from zero to ultramarathoner
The spooky thing about depression is that it sneaks in. There aren’t really trumpets and loud voices announcing: “Hail, hail, this is depression entering the room, all rise!” Nope. It’s slow, silent, creepy. It doesn’t even look like depression. It starts with small isolation thoughts like: “Maybe I shouldn’t get out today, I just don’t feel like going out”. And then it does the same next day. And then the day after that and so on. And then it starts to whisper louder and louder in your ears: “Why would you go outside, you loser? Didn’t have enough yet? Want more people to make fun of how much of a big, fat loser you are?”
And then you start to breath in guilt and shame, instead of air. Every breathe you take is putting more dark thoughts into your body.
Until you get stuck. You can’t move anymore. At all.
If you want to know how I got out of this space, eventually, check out my latest book on Amazon and Kindle.