Comparatively Speaking

This Sunday, I’m participating in “Stream of Consciousness Sunday”, hosted by Jana of Jana’s Thinking Place. The idea is to type for 5 minutes, a brain dump of sorts, and then to publish without editing the writing at all. Jana’s suggested prompt this week is “Comparisons/Competition”, and I’m going to run with that.

I try to avoid comparison or competition with anyone, these days. Of course, it’s impossible to avoid entirely, but I’ve found that too much comparing and competing can be poisonous to my mental state.

I struggle the most with comparing my blog to others’ blogs. I’m quite happy with my blog. I like the design, the overall look and feel of this space. I love having a place to express my feelings and share my experiences with whomever might choose to click over here on any given day.

I visit lots of blogs and rarely compare my blog design or content to that of other bloggers. However, I do feel the green monster of jealousy peeking over my shoulder every now and then, when I read posts about the stats of bigger and more popular blogs than mine. Sometimes I long for my blog to blossom overnight into something huge and amazing, a beloved garden spot of dedicated readers.

I can tell you, in all honesty, that I am perfectly happy with the number of visits and page views and comments that I get. I can also tell you, in all honesty, that I would love to be one of those bloggers who receives tens of thousands of hits every day. What an amazing feeling that must be!

Thing is, I imagine it’s also a lot of pressure… and I feel like it might take the fun out of blogging.

It’s a nice thought though. Maybe one day. For now, I must be content to sit tight… and continue blooming where I am planted.

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I'm Heather, a married mama of two teen girls, a stillborn baby girl (7/1/12), and a sweet and wild preschool girl (4/2/14). I've been blogging at The Destiny Manifest since 2001. I like to write about appreciating all of the beautiful little things that surround us, particularly in the face of grief, infant loss and mental health issues. Every day is an adventure!

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  • Kenya Johnson

    I absolutely love your response. I couldn’t have said it better myself! I definitely don’t want to pressure of someone looking for me. Just subscribe and be happy when you see me in your in box 😉

  • jana

    Bloom where you are planted… one of my favorite quotes ever. Comparison can be so good and yet, so bad at the same time. Keep being YOU 🙂

  • a.eye

    I would love to have a ton of readers, too. But, like you said, I imagine that might take the fun out and make it more of a pressure to write things that “the fans” liked.

  • southmainmuse

    I agree completely. Focusing on the analytic/statistic side totally takes the fun out of it for me. And the best blogs — whatever the side readership — show the author for who she or he really is.

  • Unie

    XD It’s probably sad for me to say this, but most of the really popular blogs I find…I wonder how they ever got popular because to me they’re pretty boring or too crowded with millions of badges.

    But I think the most important thing is that you like blogging even if readers don’t read it.

  • Feeling the same about blogging! Be careful what you wish for, right? Have a great day!

  • I love the idea of blooming where you’re planted! I think that’s an excellent philosophy to have at any time, any where, for any situation.

  • I’ve been in the blogging world for 5+ years now. I’ve seen a lot of no-name bloggers “blossom” into big-name bloggers. It’s not always pretty 😉 You have to write for yourself first, or those numbers mean absolutely nothing!

  • Oh I agree! There are big name bloggers who I never read, because I just don’t “get it”… and small bloggers who ought to be big ones, because they’re just amazing. Fame doesn’t always choose wisely.

  • Very true! Most of the great blogs that I know, are unheard of (or close to it). I think the pressure of being a big-name blog can easily cause a decline in the quality of writing/blog posts. Not always, but it does happen.

  • Thank you Kenya! I’ve realized through NaBloPoMo that the pressure of putting out a post every single day is not very enjoyable. I’m committed to finishing out the month, but I’m looking forward to going back to my usual 3-4 times a week posting. It’s more fun that way, and isn’t that the point of blogging? If we’re not enjoying it, why bother?

  • Thanks Jana! Comparison can be good when we use it to see where we can improve ourselves, but it becomes a bad thing when we start seeing only our faults and ignoring all of the good things.

  • Definitely!

  • Yes, and I don’t want to write only for my readers. There is an elements of that in most blog posts, yes… but I still post about things that my readers may not care a thing about, just because they do matter to me. I wouldn’t want to have to tailor every single post to the popular vote.

  • Love the glow of your bloom – its wonderful that you get that this blog is for you and your thoughts and dreams.

  • I understand what you mean completely. I too am happy with my blog stats but at the same time i’d love to one day be a “big time blogger”. And while I also agree that that would make the pressure more I think it would make blogging even more fun for me. 🙂