3 Reasons Why YOU Need To Take A Blog Break!
Y'all, I took a blog break. And it was glorious. In fact, it was so incredibly fantastic and necessary, I thought I should probably use it as the subject of today's post, my first since stepping away for almost a month.
It wasn't planned, honestly, although now that I know what I know, I will absolutely be scheduling regular breaks throughout the year. In mid-June, I started a new job and thus made my triumphant return to the workforce after over a decade (!). I had discussed this with my husband, but thought I'd have another year at home with my daughter.
After looking at our bills and goals, however, it no longer made financial sense for me to be home. So, I went out and landed the first job I applied for. The best part? My schedule complements my husband's, which means we don't need daycare. Wooohooo! Yay paycheck, benefits, and hanging out with other adults!
Okay, so that was all well and good, but I still needed time to adjust to being a full-time employee after being home with kids. I drastically underestimated the toll that would take. The last thing I wanted to do after a long day of work, preparing dinner, and bathing kids was sit down at my computer and try to make my brain do things.
When I couldn't even bring myself to sit down at my desk, I knew something had to give.
Enter: The Unintentional, But Necessary Blog Break.
What did I do, you ask? Whatever the hell I wanted. For the first time in a very long time, I actually relaxed after putting my children to bed. Okay, I may have folded a few loads of laundry or paid bills, but I ceased just about all blogging-related activities.
Truth be told, I wasn't sure when—or if—I'd return. I simply let myself be, assuring myself I'd know when it was time to hop back into blogging. One doesn't go through something like that without learning a few things along the way, which is why I made this short, but potent list. There are some similarities to my other post on what to do when your business is slow, but this one's more personal. It deals with self-care and playing the long game when it comes to maintaining an online presence.
And look, I understand many of you have a business that's quite lucrative and relies on your constant tending. I know, I promise. The thing is, burnout is real and if you keep going full-speed 24/7/365, the decision to rest won't be up to you (and will most like come at the most inopportune time.)
I can't tell you when you should take a break, but I can definitely highlight a few reasons why you should make it a factor! If you're into that sort of thing, read on...
3 Reasons Why YOU Need To
Take A Blog Break
1. To Reassess
Is this STILL what you want? No need to be on auto-pilot simply because you think this is what you're supposed to be doing. Are you passionate about it? Do you love it? If no one ever read a post and no company ever sponsored you again, would you still do this? Now that I have a full-time job, I had to ask myself these questions...and give myself to the space to come to any conclusion. Yes, that meant considering stepping away from the online world and ending my blogging career. Oddly enough, giving myself permission to stop actually reignited my resolve. I decided not to stop, but first, I had to go "there".
2. To Recharge
Obviously! Breathe, rest, release. I must confess I had a wonderful time not writing and not worrying about writing. I slept. I watched TV (Shameless! Stranger Things! Arrow!). I cuddled with my husband and kids without my phone. I got outside and enjoyed fresh air and hiking trails. It. was. bliss. And exactly what I needed.
3. To Recalibrate
What burnt you out in the first place? How can you avoid that in the future? Regular mini-breaks, or rather one long break between seasons of writing? What works best for you? Also, what inspires you? I know we're all supposed to give our readers what they want, yada, yada, yada, but what about the stories we want to share? I mentioned on Twitter the other day that I felt torn between wanting to be attractive to brands and being, well, myself. I love photography and styling pretty pictures, but I don't want to be afraid to reveal the not-so-awesome aspects of my life, those raw, honest moments we all have. I never want to give the impression my life is without lumps and bumps because there are some real messes going on around here, you know?!
That being said. sometimes, what you're interested in and what your audience loves intersect—hooray! In my case, my Whole30 content has been the most rewarding and popular creations ever, so I'm revisiting it. The timing couldn't be better, since I'm starting up my 3rd cycle of the program, and I'm so ready to get back on track.
Have you ever taken a break? Was it scheduled or a surprise? If you've never stepped away from your online business, why not? I'd love to read your thoughts below! If you're ever wanting to see what else I'm up to, click the button below to find me on Instagram. 👇🏾