I'm sure a lot of bloggers would agree that from time to time you can go through an 'I'm just not feeling my blog right now' phase for weeks on end, or in my case, practically a whole year. It's not the greatest feeling and I've recently (finally!) managed to do a 360 on my blogging funk and have fallen back in love with my little corner of the web again. If that predicament sounds familiar, here's how I flipped the blogging flop...
Take a step back and evaluate your situation, starting from the beginning. Why did you get into blogging in the first place? Was it because you're a born writer, possess the desire to share your travels across the world with the world, or feel passionate about photography? Whatever it was, heading back to your blogging roots is a great place to start and can remind you of the enthusiasm you initially felt as well as the journey since. Is there a spark of that enthusiasm still there? If you're like me and you've always been enthusiastic but life has simply gotten in the way, I'd recommend reading the rest of this post. If not, and you realise you've got no desire to blog anymore, that's fine too - it's not for everyone and coming to the realisation that you've got other interests to pursue but hopefully enjoyed blogging whilst it lasted is a worthwhile conclusion to arrive at.
Refresh your look, whether that's achieved by changing fonts or colour palettes, or going hog wild and completely redesigning your website like I did. I may never have an 'Instagram theme' - yep, serious 'gram envy of those who do - but I know the power of a fresh site and the motivation it can spark. It kind of reminds me of when I was little and I'd constantly ask for my room to be redecorated; my dad would say that I couldn't have it done until I kept it tidy, and I'd always reply that even when I did keep it tidy it didn't look good as I didn't like the carpet and walls, yada yada. I had a similar issue with my blog in that I didn't feel inspired to spend ages writing posts that were going to be published on a free template that I found in 2014 and thought, 'that'll do'. Now that I think my blog looks a lot prettier, more professional and more 'me', I'm more than happy to display my hard work on it. So with that said, keep an open mind and try something new - you can always change it back if you don't like it, but the important part is that you do make that initial change because you know what? Things can get stagnant and a fresh lick of
Make sure you write about your passions and not just about what's going to gain you more views. In the long run your blog will probably receive less traffic as writing for popularity is shortlived and eventually you'll get bored of doing it... that is if your audience doesn't get bored of reading posts with little heart or soul in them first. Deciding what you care about and heading down that route is the best and most rewarding option, as is changing the focus of your content if it feels right. For example if you started blogging about beauty but three years on you're more interested in nutrition than Naked palettes, you might want to start gradually introducing your audience to recipe posts and see how it goes. If you enjoy it then you could make it a permanent feature on your blog or even post about that and nothing else - it's entirely up to you. Don't put yourself in a box and feel like you can't switch up your content or move in a completely new direction - after all it's your blog and it's a heck of a lot more fun if it reflects your true interests.
Find inspiration in the work of others - and before we proceed please note how I've said 'inspiration' and not 'imitation'. It'll get old for you and everyone else fast, and besides, where's the fun in becoming a copy of someone else when you yourself are an original? Instead think of your five favourite blogs, make yourself a cup of tea - or y'know, whichever beverage you like - and peruse at your leisure. Don't sit with your pen poised ready to jot down any post titles that grab your attention or your content will end up very much like theirs - simply enjoy scrolling, reading, clicking and losing yourself in their work that you enjoy so much. Aside from actually writing myself, nothing ignites my love of blogging as much as having a good old read of my favourites and feeling inspired at how much time and effort they put into it all. It doesn't half make you glad you're part of the community and will have you scribbling down lists of your own ideas in no time.
One of the main things that can cause a 'blogging slump' is feeling like a failure. It's so easy to compare yourself to others and tell yourself you're doing a crap job, which in turn sets a cycle in motion where you aren't proud of what you're creating so you stop creating altogether, and so on and so on. Put an end to the cycle by planning posts for the next month and set realistic goals that are achievable for you personally. Instead of aiming too high and falling short, take into account how much time you have - for me, I have to replace 'time' with 'energy' - and think sensibly about what you can do. If that's one blog post per week then plan four posts for the month, aim to complete them by 'deadlines' and relish feeling accomplished when each one is published on time. You're replacing those negative feelings with positive ones which theoretically should ensure you feel happier and prouder of your blog, minus that unnecessary pressure.
Have fun. Sometimes getting hung up on schedules and statistics means that we lose some of the enjoyment along the way, and it's high time we let our hair down a bit. It's different if you're pursuing a career in blogging - you're gonna have to work your butt off, let's be honest - however if it's your hobby, relax. Ask yourself if it's really worth being stressed over a page on the Internet where you post what you picked up from Boots on your lunch break or your photos from your gap year spent travelling. Write for the pure enjoyment of writing, post for the love of sharing, worry less and smile more.