Thursday, 14 July 2011

A Bit of a Blogging Ramble....

For reasons that I don't quite understand, I'm feeling a little blue at the moment. It's not specifically related to blogging but it's having an impact on it and it's made me reflect on the way I blog generally.

Recently, I've got a bit pre-occupied with my statistics. It's been motivating me to post a lot but it's not sustainable long term, it's also not the reason I started this blog in the first place. I started blogging to chart my make-up journey as a late starter and to talk to other like minded (make-up obsessed) people. For the most part I blog for myself but more recently, I feel I've lost my way and been too concerned about page views. I knew that I'd lost it when I felt I needed a break but didn't want to for fear of letting my stats drop...........then I realised how ridiculous I sounded and gave myself a virtual slap!!

I need to take it down a notch or two just for a little while. I do still enjoy writing about make-up but there's nothing really tickling my fancy at the moment. There are A/W collections that I am looking forward to (hello Chanel) and I still have plenty to say about my favourite brands but I also feel the urge to cut back on my make-up buying for a bit. I desperately need to buy new clothes and shoes. Perfect make-up accesorized with trousers with holes and bleach marks feels like a bit of an odd statement!!

The other problem is time. Blogging currently takes up all of my spare time (and some of my sleep time!). I have a book that's sat half read for about six months, a stack of magazines to digest and programmes to catch up on. I need to find a better blog/life balance so that I can have a bit of me time back. After all blogging isn't my job, it's a hobby. Hopefully with a bit of a rest I'll re-discover my blogging mojo.

So, I suppose that's rather a long winded way of saying that I shall be posting a little less over the summer and that maybe there will be fewer new product posts whilst I re-stock in other areas. I might even slip in a few dieting and clothes or accessories purchases along the way. If you have any requests for posts about my current collection please feel free to fling them my way!

Thanks for reading,
MB x

32 comments:

  1. This resonates with me more than you will ever know and I'm new to blogging. It's hard to not let it consume you and get caught up with every new makeup collection. It's also pressure inducing that as soon as you hit "publish" you need to be working/thinking on the next post. I totally get it and you've been at it longer than me! Take care, Jane, and know that when you return I, along with your legion of fans will be here waiting with bated breath. Rest up and focus on what is truly important in life, your health & family. Virtual hugs from California!

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  2. Take a rest when you need it!! Blogging does take a lot of work, and I think that some folks don't recognize that. (And when you're not really excited about anything new or new-to-you...that makes it even harder to blog because you have to struggle to find anything to blog *about*!)

    Whether you adjust the focus, slow down, take a break altogether, or a combination, we'll still be here to say 'hi'.

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  3. Take a breather and come back to it with fresh eyes. I had a similar episode a few month ago. I've found the best thing that works for me is taking one afternoon every 2-3 weeks are having a massive writing session (I make little lists of blog posts to write in between though so I don't forget ideas...). Then I Schedule everything and sit back and get on with life for the next couple of weeks. It works for me x

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  4. There's no shame in taking a break :) I definitely agree about the fact it's a hobby, not job. Whilst some people pursue blogging as a potential career, we don't all have to! I've taken various breaks as a blogger and they're always been good for me - there's nothing worse than blogging for the sake of it and starting to hate it or resent it. Blog when it feels right and not any other time - we'll still be waiting here for you! And yeah, the stats trap... I purposefully try not to really look at mine that much anymore. It just makes me obsessive and crazy!!

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  5. @HDTM: Thank you so much, I appreciate the virtual hugs. I've got some posts sorted schedule this week and next so hopefully there won't be too much interruption for people reading. I just need to hold off the daily posts for a little while x

    @LiAnn - Thanks LiAnn. It does take a lot of work on my part, I'm slow with writing too so I can struggle with scheduling posts. I have written a few in advance to give me a bit of a breather. A bit of slowing in pace will hopefully get me over the summer hump!

    @Claire: I've had a bit of a writing session over the last couple of days (I'm slow with writing). Hopefully I can do this a few times over the summer holidays to give myself a rest from daily writing. I know I won't have so much time with the children at home. I've written myself a little list of posts to do so fingers crossed that should help. Thank you for sharing what worked for you, it's really useful.

    @Emily: As I don't really work, it's really easy to let it absorb all of my time. Blogging has been a great way to keep my brain active but I do need to take some time back especially with issues at school. The stats trap.....I annoyed myself getting sucked in to it. I'll have to pledge not to look at them for a bit!!

    Thanks so much for all your kind words,
    Jane x

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  6. I'm sorry to hear that you are feeling a bit down :(
    I do know what you mean though, when it starts taking a lot of time up the fun part of it sometimes gets lost. I don't tend to look at page views, stats and that but I do look at much newer blogs than mine that have loads more followers than me and wonder if I am wasting my time if people aren't interested in my posts.

    With the amount of stuff I buy I really need to do more posts a week but I struggle with the 3 I do anyway as you know I am always moaning about my picture taking!

    I think the whole thing is easy to get caught up in, I think with larger/very popular blogs like yourself you can feel that you are obliged to do posts on a certain day, in a certain way and about certain things, when like you say its a hobby and should be stress free.

    Well I hope you feel more upbeat soon, I have to ask did you order TM raisin? my list is very long and there doesn't seem to be that many good photos/swatches of the brand around to help me choose.

    Take care
    xx

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  7. awww. You know, it's always amazed me how (I hope you don't mind me saying this) ordinary women with no pretensions to professional writing can give us a daily magazine quality article, with no real support and buying most of the stuff they write about. I don't blog but I think I can identify a little as recently I've made myself feel quite queasy buying too much makeup, and I don't have to write about it.

    Most of my favourite bloggers are taking a summer break at the moment because of makeup/blogging burnout, so off you go, forget about it and I hope we'll see you refreshed with the Autumn collections! Oh, and if you use the time to decide you've had enough, good on you and thank you Jane, you've been stellar! x x

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  8. Hi Jane, you take a break, life is more important than blogging! It would be lovely to read about your accessories, dieting, clothes purchases etc if you feel you have the time. lots love Claire xx

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  9. One of the reasons I like your blog so much is because it's totally a relaxed and personal blog about you and your make up. I don't mind what you write about, you're just good at it so I shall look forward to and read anything you do post in the next few months x

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  10. Your blog, like all good blogs, is not about readership, but about the ability to generate communication; in my opinion, that's how you turn readers into friends. You have achieved this.
    So take your time, take a break, take a new direction, do whatever you want to do...we'll still be here and happy to share :)
    Nina x

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  11. P.S. I can't remember the last time I looked at my stats. It's nice not knowing sometimes :)

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  12. I'm really looking forward to reading some of your non makeup related posts.

    I hope you get your blogging mojo back soon as I adore reading your posts, take a little bit of time away for your self and i'm sure you will soon feel so much better about things xxx

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  13. Sorry to hear your feeling bit blue, I hope you feel better soon:)

    I find it hard to post regularly but I have to remember that I am blogging for fun and should not feel pressured to post frequently. Lately I've been trying to refocus on what I actually want from my blog rather then getting caught up with other things as I do know what you mean about checking stats etc.

    Don't worry about taking a break, when you do decide to post however long it might be I know that we'll be here to share in your makeup obsession!

    Meeta x

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  14. I am actually having these same thoughts right now. I am going to have to take a break soon and refocus.

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  15. I love your blog, just discovered it recently and was quickly hooked, I like your honesty and writing style; I quite understand about blogging taking up your time, I find the same thing and I think your reassessment is very sensible; hope you are feeling more buoyant soon and don't worry, you don't need to post every day, just a post now and again would be fab!!

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  16. This sounds like a great plan. Enjoy taking some time for yourself, and I look forward to your wider blogging scope! Hurrah for blog/ life balance :)

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  17. We'll all still be there whenver you do post :) I feel a bit like that quite often at this time of year - I think the end of the summer term can get a bit manic - I've got two sports days in two days, loads of plays, dress-up days (the kids NOT me!), school trips, street parties.....oh the list goes ON and ON - looking forward to the end of the term next Thursday when things can slow down :)

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  18. {{{HUG}}} I hope it's just a summer slump and you get your blogging juju back ... if that's what you still want. I know exactly how you feel, as I have been feeling very much the same lately. I was also worried about stats and followers until I asked myself why. What was my goal in blogging? It isn't to attract PR firms or make money. I don't want perks or a job ... I just want to talk about beauty-related issues with like-minded people. But like you, I worried when I missed a day and cursed the weather when it was too dark and gloomy to take good pictures.

    As for the point of it all, my job is high tech and low key, so buying all this makeup can seem ridiculous when the most dressed up I get is khakis and a v-neck sweater (or yoga pants and a cami at home). I *do* do it for me, though.

    I love blogging and really enjoy everyone I have met and reading comments, but I also need balance between my 3D and 2D life. I have spent very little time in my gardens this summer, and my house has become so cluttered I am uncomfortable in my own skin because of the chaos. I do like Claire's idea of mass writing and scheduling the posts. I stared doing that, but it was still tricky when writing about product if the reviews were to be picture dense. As you know, getting the right images for one or many posts can take half a day or more.

    I recently scaled back on my blogging frequency, and I have been purchasing FAR less. So I guess I am accidentally taking a breather, too. So do what feels best for you, Jane. Take as long a break as you need and, trust me, your popularity will not diminish. Personally, I most love your posts about life, more than product-though I love those, too. :)

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  19. I don't think there's a harder task in the world than to blog without a mojo. When it's time to take a break, it's definitely time to take a little break.

    I slip a few cooking-related posts in here and there just because it gives me something else to enjoy looking back on (am I the only one that loves reading back through my archives - how vain is that?).

    I'll really look forward to reading some 'off topic' posts from you. Don't forget, we're not your clients, this isn't your job. We're your friends (at least we hope so) and take great pleasure from just hearing little snippets from your makeup adventures/life/anything you wanna throw our way.

    I hope that makes sense, I'm banging this out on the keyboard when I KNOW I should be doing other stuff x

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  20. i think this will resonate with a lot of us bloggers!
    Thank you so much for the sweet comment on my blog though and I hope to read more of your posts soon when you feel like you will enjoy writing them, I'm sure they will be brill :)
    xox

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  21. Oh Jane, it sounds like you should definitely give yourself a well deserved rest for a while. At the beginning, I checked stats but then google analytics disappeared when I changed my layout and being inherently lazy, I never fixed it. I haven't looked at any stats since January and yes, my posting has decreased but I'm fine with it.

    I love makeup and still spend far too much on it but career stuff, exams and voluntary work are more important and they will always come first. That way, blogging is just a nice distraction.

    Oh and I totally know what you mean about having lovely makeup and not such lovely clothes. I spend most days in pyjamas or sweat pants covered in holes from the puppy! xx

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  22. I know how you feel. I think at one time every blogger has felt this way. It's good to step back and take a little break. You can't worry about stats all the time or it will drive you crazy. Or worse, it will drive you to continue blogging but you will have negative feelings towards it. Take a break and come back when you're up to it. We will be here when you're ready. =)

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  23. I completely agree with Charlotte. I'm delighted to read whatever you post because you're my friend and I love to see what's happening in your life!

    That said, sometimes a break is needed and there's nothing wrong with that. Your stats may drop but they'll pick back up again, and like you said, stats aren't everything!

    Take as much time as you need, I'll wait patiently :)

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  24. I hear you there hun, I have to remind myself the world won't end if I don't post for a day or two.. I've taken up The Sims again just as a relaxation as it's all a bit stressful.

    Don't worry about your stats, and know that we'll still be here when your mojo returns <3

    xx

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  25. Ohhh I know what you mean about stats, mine dropped when I went on holiday, and I even tried to schedule posts for when away (although they were just photographs and my thoughts really - but I didn't want to leave the blog neglected completely)... yet I was gutted about it. Got to keep reminding myself that it's not the end of the world! xx

    Ms Red - A fellow simmer, glad I'm not the only one, I'm also doing a bit more simming to give me some more focus! xx

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  26. I get you. You are the most important person and your family needs you. This blog will always be on the web. Stats are stats and unless you are getting millions and your life depends on your ratings like a tv show; ignore the stats and pay attention to your sanity. There is more to life than this virtual world! xoxo

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  27. Hi Jane, I enjoy your witty writing style and would be interested in reading about clothing, lifestyle, or any subject you might fancy writing about, at your leisure. Maintaining a blog is VERY time-consuming, and blogging is no fun when it feels like work. I find it difficult to post more than once a week --especially if I'm unable to work on my blog at the office because my boss is hovering around my desk and giving me assignments (the nerve of him)--will he never understand that working on my blog post is so much more urgent than his dictation?! *sigh* ;-)
    ((hugs)) xx Shannon

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  28. Even though I'm not a mum, I do think you are an inspiration to all those mum's out there with small children to look after. You always look good (from what you show us) so it makes sense to give us a fashion and accessories show too!

    If you only post a few times a week all your readers will still be here - we love what you do! :D

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  29. Jane I don't know how I missed this post! It is funny how obsessed we can become with our blog babies. I think it in part has to do with being women and always trying to be perfect. You need to spend time with your family and get back to yourself again. I can foresee this happening to me in the future but as of right now blogging is keeping me from being blue. We are always here no matter how much you post (just please don't abandon as all together! I love our twitter chats!). I made a funny post on Jenn's blog this week about the only nice things I own is my makeup and the rest of me looks homeless LOL. "Slight: exaggeration but truth to it none the less. I totally understand where you are coming from. I devote all my free time and sleep time as you said, and all my money plus more I don't even have into blogging and makeup. The only justification I have in terms of my blog as I was doing it anyways before. So far I have managed not to buy anything "for the blog". I try to carry on as I was prior to blogging...which just happened to be already out of control ;-0

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  30. Just adding my voice to the many above! Whilst it has been easy for me to decide to do as much or as little blogging as I wish because I have a tiny readership that isn't increasing, I can imagine it would feel like a huge pressure to continually post interesting posts to maintaina readership and statistics that have taken a huge amount of work to generate!

    I genuinely don't think easing back will make a huge difference for you, nor would it for any of the other very successful and popular blogs, its not about the frequency of your posts its about the quality, thats how you have earned your readership and page views. You write with a certain "voice" that people really like, I know I do!, and come across as informed, intelligent and approachable and that would be the case if you posted hourly, weekly or monthly! Do what works for you, have a fab Summer and only blog when the mojo grabs you! xx

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  31. Thank you for this post! I could say so many things but I am just going to say that I'd love to see post on different subjects (films, books, recipes, inspiration whatever you like) from time to time.
    I guess everyone has a moment like this sometimes.
    x

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  32. Thank you so, so much for all your supportive and understanding comments. It meant a lot to me and really helped to see me through my major slump. I'm indebted to you all!
    Jane xx

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