I've not been blogging for very long... compared to pioneers who've probably blogged for 10 over years, my 2.5 years' worth of contribution is probably puny. Nonetheless, with the constant blogger drama going on and people telling me, "why are you blogging!? Bloggers are so disgusting".. I started thinking.. was this line I'm in that bad?
Sure, there've been bad times but there's also been good. At the end of it all, there's always a lesson to be learnt. Since some lessons tend to overlap, I thought I'd break it down to 5 things I've learnt while blogging. Lets start!
1) Small prawns can become lobsters overnight
Have you ever read one of those website posts which boom overnight because they've managed to successfully point out a certain blogger's flaws and then magnify them by 100? Chances are yes, because many gossip websites scour the net for juicy stories - which typically involve the demise of some person's reputation.
By this time, it doesn't matter if whatever that blogger did was right or wrong. No one bothers to get to know that blogger in real life to find out. They make assumptions immediately, negative ones at that, and the worst people are those who really want you to know what they think through emails or comments. They'll say things like, "what a small prawn, I've never even heard of him/her. Who does he/she think he/she is!?"
Well, he/she is whoever they've been made to be. Probably small prawns at first, but with constant facebook shares and nasty screenshots.. they've turned into lobsters. So can you reading this, and so can I. The virality of such posts can never be controlled and that's what's really scary.
Which leads me to my next point..
2) There's always limit to "being yourself"
I'm a very tomboyish vulgar girl by nature - but no one who reads this blog would ever assume that. Does that mean I'm not being me here? Not really. All humans are multi-faceted. Some men are scummy husbands who cheat on their wives all day, but they love their children to bits. Sounds familiar doesn't it?
Likewise for blogging. JUST because I am more rough sometimes around my guy friends and brothers doesn't mean I am that way with my girl friends. I CAN have a passion for makeup which is girlier and I CAN have a side of me that's softer and I CAN choose to portray that without being called pretentious. Just because you feel you're an abrasive "honest" person doesn't mean that's who you are all the time and it definitely isn't the side of you that's the best to show. Everything has limits and I think a certain kind of social responsibility should be heeded especially when it comes to writing online.
That doesn't mean there won't be backlash though! I could be the nicest person and people would still find crap to dig out about me so I constantly tell myself this...
3) "If they ain't paying your bills, you pay them no mind"
People are always going to make judgement calls about what you wear, eat, breathe, look, etc. It's a non-exhaustive list. What can you do when you've posted an innocent picture of your lip swatch and someone comments, "nice moustache"? (p/s: totally real story by the way, so yes such idiots do exist).
The answer is: nothing. Do nothing, feel nothing, think nothing. Who knows what's the real intention behind the actions of such people? Maybe they don't even know what they're trying to achieve. At the end of the day, negativity is something you definitely don't need in your life so just forget it.
It's easier said than done, I more than understand. I've been one who suffers from self esteem issues for a long time and starting out a beauty blog has it's fair share of risks. It's never easy opening yourself up to a whole world of keyboard warriors. Therefore...
4) Always remember that looks are all subjective
Not just my PHYSICAL looks by the way. Everything comes into play here. The way my blog looks, the way my life looks, the way my boyfriend looks (or even maybe even my future dog?) is sure to garner some kind of unwarranted attention.
I could one day post the best photo of my hair I've ever taken in 20 years and amidst the 100 amazing comments (not that I get that many lol), there's always going to be one unnecessarily mean one like, "do you realize you're super ugly?"
This sentence itself portrays 2 trains of thought. One is that someone thinks I'm ugly, and two is that they think I should feel it. Now, I can't control the first one but I definitely can control the second.. and I never fail to bear that in mind. Sure, some of the most successful bloggers got there completely based on their looks, and they can never be blamed for that. But I shouldn't need to hold myself to that ideal either because...
5) Success is a very fickle-minded bitch
I could be blogging one day and totally shut down the next. I could get death threats to my family, friends, etc. Though success is often highly sought after, I actually think it's not as desirableas it's made out to be. People constantly try to put across success as happiness but the two are mutually exclusive. Some of the richest folks take drugs to ease their pain and some of the simplest farmers live peacefully till the day they die.
Thus I tell myself, don't aim for success alone. It's fickle minded: that's how the term "15 minutes of fame" came about versus "happily ever after". As a blogger, I know what it's like to want to be popular, to want to go to the best parties and know the most popular people. As a person, I know that's not what I really seek in my life. I'm a homebody and I enjoy the company of a few quality friends and family over a casual dinner and drinks.
It's easy to sell out for success, but it's easier to be humble and happy.
P/S: not hating on anyone who got successful through blogging! It's perfectly possible to be successful and happy at the same time - just creating a reminder that you don't need to be one to be the other.
So there you go, 5 things I've learnt whilst blogging. Anything you guys have to share whilst blogging as well? Let me know! :)