When the end of the school year hit last year (2014) I made a conscious decision to have a proper concentrated break away from the blog and the creative energy I put into content creation for a few weeks. During this time these thoughts came to mind and I wanted to share them here and I hope they are helpful to someone else who is concerned about or wanting to take a blogging break and wondering what it'll mean for them and their audiences!
Just a few weeks ago I clocked five years of blogging and during those five years I've been through many waves of motivation and inspiration with my writing and have blogged elsewhere than this here blog. Once I really got the bug for blogging in 2010 after starting at the end of 2009, I found that I really liked posting several times a week; sharing various things and hopefully being useful to others.
I know many other bloggers who post every day of the week and are engaged in their audiences and communities. But many bloggers worry (I once did) about taking a break from their blogs out of concern of losing some of their readers or loosing any momentum they have gained. But as bloggers in a fast past online world I think we have to be realistic about the pace at which we run, with our writing and content creation schedules and the creative energy it takes to do that consistently.
The truth is if you're employed and also try to maintain a blog frequently, I'm sure you find that work can often get monotonous if you haven't had annual leave for some time. The same is for if you work part time or casual or you're at home running a business or looking after children, it can get tough! For many it's the same with blogging and writing and we can get stagnant and uninspired in our ideas and content. In my opinion there's no point forcing the issue and hitting the publish button when you've hit this point even if you're concerned about losing readers, here's why:
- Forcing yourself to write when your inner voice has been screaming at you to take a break or slow down is a disservice to yourself and your readers. You're likely to turn out substandard pieces of your usual caliber that contain your normal spark and spirit. The reality is your readers will sense this and likely not engage when this keeps happening or they may even click away, if you keep pushing through for too long. Keeping on keeping on when you're not feeling leaves open to there always being the chance you may loose some of your readers for good.
- Taking a break and enjoying the every day of your offline world without the niggling need or want to write or create content, helps give a fresh perspective. Often when we've been pushing through and writing when a break is needed we get tunnel vision with content creation and start to feel as though we don't have enough to write about. A break of even a week or two can do wonders for the mind with all sorts of ideas flooding to you by changing your focus and going into holiday mood for a wee bit.
- Whilst taking a break you can take time to play around with ideas that you haven't had time for in your normal day to day content generation and posting schedule. Perhaps life has been so busy that new ideas that you've not been able to give energy to, need for you to go into holiday mode to get them off the ground. Sometimes it's hard to give new ideas a good chance at flying high when you're caught with your focus on the day to day and "getting by". So use the time when having a break to brainstorm and let your ideas fully out to play to see what becomes of them.
Writing and blogging is something I like to work on everyday regardless of the amount of times I actually publish a post each week, I've always treated what I do like a form of employment and something to take annual leave from. If you're working towards developing your blog and actively trying to generate an income from it or developing a businesses associated with or as an offshoot to your blog, I encourage you take a break, consider looking at your schedule and commitments on and offline and factoring in some annual leave from your blog throughout the year.
Don't be afraid to take a break, consider a little bit of annual leave for yourself through the year here and there. By taking a week here and there you're likely to find you will be less inclined to have those moments where you're well is completely running dry. So rather than leaving a blogging break as a last resort, consider it as annual leave as a necessity to factor in to maintain your focus and enthusiasm.