Following my post about blogging etiquette this morning I thought I stick to some thoughts about blogging and share an older post of mine as a Blast From The Past with you. Have you ever worried about the impact one of your posts might have? Have you been worried about pushing that button? Have you been scared to publish one of your posts? I think we all get to that point at one stage.
When I started blogging I had my little rule: Keep my blog a happy place. No judging, no finger pointing, no aggression, no intolerance, no rudeness. I found out over time that you can only stick to this rule to a certain point if you want to truly blog from your heart. There are just some things that you can’t address without pointing your finger, maybe even judging. Like my post about the Grindarap, my post about Religion or even about Feeling numb because of our justice system or the bystander effect.
Sometimes I feel pulled in different directions. On one side I have my feelings, my values, my thoughts that I like to share. On the other side there’s my rule to not judge, to not point a finger. And I realize that I simply can’t write that post I so want to write without being judgmental. It’s one of the moments I’m not sure if if I should post it. If I should put it out there. But then, isn’t exchange all about sharing thoughts like this? About discussing them and giving input and / or advice?
Hitting that publish button usually feels pretty easy to me although I know that I should wait and read my post again in order to find some mistakes. There are some post I’ve written though, which I hesitated pressing publish. In a way it scared me knowing that I’m about to put this specific thought out there and was worried about the feedback I’d get. I’ve also deleted a couple of posts simply because I knew they would stir things up or reach someone who I didn’t want to read my thoughts on that subject via Facebook.
Today, after reading this, I know that I’m not alone. Does that help? Not really. Of course it’s soothing to know that other bloggers struggle with publishing certain thoughts too and it shows that we not just push content out there in order to produce something. It needs to feel right for us too. We need to be comfortable with what we want to express.
I always try to keep my posts free from attacks and harsh judgment. It’s not what I want to do. I want my blog to be a happy place where I share my opinion, my worries and, yes, things that bother me or make me angry. In a way though, it still only reflects my feelings for it and my opinion. One of my aims is to keep an open mind and if someone doesn’t agree with what I’m saying then I’m more than happy to hear that persons opinion too and learn from it. Very often we find ourselves stuck in our world and our routines and might not see other ways anymore. In a civilized and constructive exchange we might though suddenly realize that it can be done differently too. It can be viewed in a different way without being judgmental, aggressive or negative.
The posts I’ve so far struggled with publishing were posts I felt I’m pushing my own rules. Although I always make clear that what I have to say is my point of view and not the way it is or has to be, I wondered how it might be received by my readers. Readers that might have a totally opposite point of view. I guess when you write about your thoughts on life and what you encounter on a daily base you can’t get around the hot iron. People do have different opinions, different traditions, different values. If I blog as a mom the hot iron for sure is parenting. In general I think it’s a hot iron to touch as everyone has a strong idea about how it should be done. Even people who don’t have kids. Another one is religion or same sex marriage. Even traditions can be a tricky thing to write about.
If you touch certain subjects it’s wise to walk gently, I think. A bashing doesn’t really belong here. And yet you might get to that point by simply writing about your experience and letting your feelings get to you while your fingers hit the keyboard. It surprises me how harsh the reaction of certain people can be if you simply write about your feelings. No judging, no attack, no putting yourself above others. Just speak your mind in a polite way.
I guess what I’ve learned over the last months of blogging is that you never really know what triggers which kind of reaction. Just as my friend Vaishali over at The Champa Tree had to learn too. You simply list things that have been listed before and you get a bashing. On the other side you expect negative reactions (maybe because you’ve encountered them in your real life, in a face to face conversation) and all you get is support.
I found that whenever I write about a homeschooling issue, the amount of support and positive feedback I get is huge.There are things that are hard for me to shared. I’ve not done it so far, as I’m not ready yet for certain people to read those thoughts. There are some subject you have a strong opinion about and you really want to share but your afraid of the fall out it might have. There are subjects you feel you need to write about to get it off your chest. Things that don’t have a big importance to you in that sense but you know they are very important for others. And then there’s just your simple thought of the day, you point of view, your way to see life or certain things in life. Something that seems so innocent but can trigger a big storm too!
This is my advice: Think before you publish. Think about the impact it might have on others. Would it be hurtful to read? Would it make someone feel bad? Are you bullying? Check how you worded it. Are you accusing? Are you judging? Are you aggressive? Are you attacking? Do you want to do that? Are you willing to take the heat for it?
I think it’s important that you can stand behind your words. That you choose them wisely. Be kind even if you have a strong opinion. Consider another opinion and where it might come from.
If you are worried to press the publish button there’s a reason for it. Make sure you understand that reason. Sometimes things need a bit of courage. If it’s about putting yourself out there, doing something you want to do but scares you slightly do it, if you feel it will be good for you.
Pressing that publish button can sometimes feel like bungee jumping (not that I’ve done it but I can imagine how it must feel…). You probably question why you initially came up with the idea and you feel scared to jump but you know you want to and you will. And then you will feel good afterwards. Do it. If it feels good to get those thoughts out there, then do it. But consider the feelings of others too. It should not be about hurting people. And that’s the same with commenting on posts too.