Why I Feel Like Quitting After 7 Years Of Blogging

This month* marks seven years since I started this blog. This year marks a turning point in my life where I’ve thought about quitting blogging and even writing altogether.

It seems my relationship with blogging has hit the seven year itch.

Writing (1)

Writing (1)

Over time I’ve blogged less and less. When I started blogging, I blogged weekly. Then fortnightly. Over the last two years I’ve put up one post a month and scaled back freelance writing work. That made me realise, the less time you spend on something, the more time you have for yourself and the more time to think.

Remembering why you blog

Recently I fell sick and that put into perspective the important things in life. As the season swept from winter to spring, one day early in September I awoke with a painful throat. I went to work business as usual, business as usual for the next two weeks sounding like a frog. As the sun rose earlier and earlier with each passing day, the painful throat steamrolled into a bad cold, nose running like Niagara Falls round the clock along with oscillating body temperatures.

Going to work was impossible. Scrolling through my phone was such an effort that I gave up. There was nothing else to do but sit at home and do nothing. There was no blogging. No reading other blogs. No writing new blog posts. No writing at all.

I didn’t miss any of that.

Writing (2)

Writing (2)

In a world where success is constantly defined by popularity, what job you have and how much you earn, many see a successful blog as a blog with hundreds if not thousands of views a day. Or a blog with a large following and spruiking sponsorship deals. Through rose tinted glasses, a successful blogger or writer is someone who sells millions of books or is a household name.

Many live with the idea you should be remunerated for everything you do. Some bloggers blog for views and recognition. They feel deflated when they don’t get the readership they hoped for and quit. That’s not me.

It’s not that blogging is tough, like how some bloggers find the juggling act of blogging too hard and give up. There’s lots of work behind-the-scenes: drafting blog posts, editing posts, optimising posts towards SEO if you want to reach an audience, marketing your blog, coordinating your blog’s social media platforms and more. As someone who likes organised routine, I gladly stuck to a blogging routine.

It’s not that I don’t have anything to write and blog about anymore. Some bloggers get burnt out or bored of their content after a while and leave blogging at that. There are heaps of topics I want to write about: from ways to stand up to racism to why many of us drink tea to reasons why EPL is so popular all over the world.

It’s not that I don’t like writing anymore. I still love writing and it’s the best way I express my thoughts.

Writing (3)

Writing (3)

Reasons to not blog

After seven years of blogging and a lifetime as a writer, I want to do other things.

That is, there are other things I want to do so much more than blogging and writing. Hobbies I’ve never had time for. Other interests which I want to dive into. Going to places I’ve been planning for a while.

Writing and researching one blog post takes me weeks. It wasn’t uncommon for me to spend three hours on a blog post, five nights a week for a few weeks. And still not be happy with it. And spend more time prepping the post.

Earlier this year I had a taste of non-blogging by not blogging for a week here and there and went about a different normal. Different routines come with different ways of getting around, different trains of thought, surprises and a newfound appreciation of what you haven’t done until you’re doing it right now.

When you’re down and out and things take a turn for the worse, routine can go out the window. Being ill I felt that all too well: sitting in my room surrounded by four white walls, just sitting. Throat going from feeling like it was being stabbed with daggers to a burning raging fire. The chapter of being a writer had come to a standstill. Outside tiny yellow succulent blooms sprouted amidst the departing winter chill, their vibrant petals swaying with the blustery winds on summer-like September days.

Writing (4)

Writing (4)

When you put aside something you’ve always done, there’s more time for things that make life a comfortable one: doing chores, policing your health, spending time with those you want to see. Less blogging, more time for things I have to do. That includes scrubbing my bathroom tiles clean with a toothbrush.

Being overly busy is not cute. The more time you have for things you want and have to do, the more you do things with undivided attention. That brings a stronger sense of purpose for the things you do.

Less blogging also means less time spent online and more time offline in the private moments of reality. Often many of us are extroverted when we’re online, especially when we’re on Facebook or Twitter or on our blogs sharing our personal lives.

As you get older, you tend to become more introverted. The older you get the more you appreciate the small things. The quiet moments of waking up without pain and a day out become so much more special. Covert solitude becomes so much more special and something you want and need in the present.

The September days turned into weeks and the weeks turned into October. Trees adorned with green leaves dotted the streets outside, the leaves swaying in the sometimes warm, sometimes chilly Melbourne springtime air. Losing track of the days and timeline of 2019, the congested passages of heart and life within me eased. Waking up now feeling a bit less in pain and other affections less amplified was such a wonderful feeling.

With life changing moments surrounding illness, there’s no returning to what you called normal. As Ana Harris writes on re-entering life after chronic illness, ‘everything that should feel familiar feels new, scary and overwhelming’ such as swiping a credit card at the store. After being diagnosed with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome, Angie Ebba reflects on going through phases of grieving and acceptance of your ‘new’ body; you learn new ways to experience the parts of yourself each passing day.

Writing (5)

Writing (5)

Time for change

Life is a series of seasons where change is the only constant. There are times where you’ll feel stuck trying to figure things out or wondering why everyone and everything is against you. Other times, you take things into your own hands and do what you want to do.

A clearer mind doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve found what you want to do. It could mean you can finally manifest so many more options and possibilities ahead of you.

I guess that’s why some bloggers stop blogging one day: there’s more to life than blogging.

You might avidly follow a blogger whom you are a big fan of, be it for their work or personality. Then one day, they stop posting. However, they might occasionally pop up and read and comment on your blog – like how friends we’ve never seen in a while come around and say hi one day.

More often than not, these bloggers respect the time they put into blogging, respect the community within blogging and most importantly, respect their life and the things in life they enjoy. They don’t need to announce or explain themselves if they decide to stop blogging or put their blog on extended pause.

Writing (6)

Writing (6)

On a cool-again mid-spring day, I flipped the pages of my planner. Empty pages adorned the sections September and October. No blogging schedules. No book writing time. No grocery shopping lists. No exercise time. No normal everyday routine. None of it bothered me.

Posting online never appealed to me in the first place. My family and friends have to beg me to post on my private social accounts and yet, I don’t really. Funnily enough this free-for-all blog kept going for so long and it’s been quite a ride with these opportunities:

  • Being featured on Freshly Pressed (now WordPress Discover).
  • Invitations to guest post on other blogs.
  • Freelance writing gigs.
  • Speaking at conferences, magazine and radio interviews.
  • Contributing to a book (Lady By The River) with fellow bloggers.
  • Getting automated emails from marketing companies wanting to guest post on my blog and willing to pay me (Just no).
  • Getting sponsorship deals and free stuff to review and promote (Never taken up).
  • Having something strange to say in job interviews.
  • Earning an income from WordAds over the last few years.
  • Getting fan mail.

Having people read my blog means the world to me. The best part is when I get to talk to bloggers on here and on their blogs too. People are fascinated by what’s popular and ‘in’, and I’m not one to follow trends. Think online trends such as Nanowrimo, tag questions, room tours, what I eat in a day diaries and so much more. Yet people still follow along this blog – giving up their time to be here. Thank you  :O

Writing (7)

Writing (7)

The green leaves on the trees outside swayed in the fresh winter-like breeze. Sitting back in my chair and mustering every ounce of energy from within a body battered and wild, I turned the pages of the planner towards the months ahead. While writing will still be a part of what I do, blogging here will be different. Life will never be the same again.

When you’re passionate about something, it doesn’t mean you’ll want to do it all the time. Life is a season of changes where we all move on to different things to find what makes us happy in a season. At some point, some things end, some things are put on pause.

Some things you just never know how they’ll turn out.

Have you thought about leaving blogging behind?

*written October 2019

178 thoughts on “Why I Feel Like Quitting After 7 Years Of Blogging

  1. Quitting is the easiest thing to do and we all go through this phase, and many times we don’t know how to navigate the sudden turn in our life. Some time we falter and some time we succeed, nothing is wrong and right, things cannot always be placed in black and white. The colors is what makes life colorful. We all have in some time or other realized that we can step back, pause for a while and reflect deep inside, and these moments are the best times to unearth something and explore many things hidden, just that we need to take things on a stride and strive for joy in whatever we do. You have done such wonderful work in this space and your achievements are what others will envy but some time we being there don’t realize the road we have traveled, the distance covered and what we have achieved… we are so near our destination and we try to distance ourselves as we are tried. This is the time we need to stand up and fight with our own thoughts to whom we have given such lovely tours of vacation and it is trying stop our own journey of passion that we have so delicately and diligently worded for years.

    Writing and Blogging is not what we do because we are duty bound but we do because we derive such deep pleasure and joy of doing it. We are not only doing for ourselves but we are doing for others, and the greater community of blogging we are part of and we have a responsibility as well. Every post of ours and our conversation changes the way the community grows and gains its momentum, we all owe to it. Our small step adds a big ladder for many more aspiring bloggers and those who are wandering and searching for a place to express their thoughts and connect with a community that cares. Once of time as you have mentioned we all have gone through that phase and there are others who had inspired us and motivated us to keep going. We have followed their words and have created a wonderful world for ourselves, it is not a place but our second space we are divinely connected. Dear Mabel, you are an inspiration and your works and your words are pillars for such profound thoughts…it is time “to makeup and not breakup”.

    Wishing you Mabel a wonderful 2020 Happy New Year!!!
    Signing Off 2019 from wondering “Makeup & Breakup.”
    😀

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    • To a degree I agree quitting is the easiest thing to do. You can just say you won’t do something anymore, and don’t need to show up for it anymore. On the other hand, I also think quitting is hard. It’s hard when what you doing is something you enjoy so much and it means a lot to you. So agree with you in life colours makes life colourful and over time, a lot of us travel further than we’ve ever thought. We don’t realise it until we look back – or realise that until we want to move on to other things we’ve never tried or been.

      As writers and bloggers, we do get a lot our of blogging and writing. It is meaningful work to us and that’s why we keep doing it. I think you are so right when saying blogging comes with responsibility. As writers, putting out work out there as bloggers and publishers, we seek to encourage others to think, reflect and see the world in different ways. In other words, we can change and shape people. One small step does indeed lead to bigger steps, all of us taking bigger steps together to another conversation and perhaps also another level of being together in this world side by side. Maybe this non-blogging phase is a phase of my life. Maybe it’s not. Or maybe it will be a short one. Who knows.

      Thank you for your kind words, Nihar. It has been a pleasure, and will continue to be, conversing with you on here. Let’s see what the future brings. Happy New Year to you too. 2020 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes Mabel, there is this realization and reflection that comes our way during different stages and phases of life. Doing different things and changing our course and creating new recourse as we progress in life is where we discover newer ways of making life much more meaningful. Some time just taking a break from what we have been doing and love doing it gives us that new zest to do it better and bigger.

        Blogging and writing definitely one of the most powerful way of engaging with ourselves and reflecting on same thing differently and allow ourselves to express freely and converse deeply, and that makes a huge difference.

        Another important aspects is not to think too much on anything and take things on the stride as it comes and the way it comes and we suddenly see new things and new happenings in our life.
        These are just few passing phases and some phases we dislike and we need to keep distance and patiently wait for the like phases to come our way and it comes with much bigger vigor.

        Not to worry for anything and let 2020 be the harbinger of new joy and loads of happiness in your life..
        Take care Mabel.
        😀

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    • Thanks, D. This is true. We have to follow our lives and calling outside of this blog. Keep doing what you do on here and outside of here. Wishing you a wonderful year ahead 🙂

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  2. I know how you feel. I’ve been through that lately. I took a long 2 month break and when I was back I was happier to write. I have reduced the number of posts and write only when I feel like. Interacting with fellow bloggers is the best part of it. Ultimately, you must do what makes you feel happy. Here’s to 2020 and hope it brings you good health and happiness.

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  3. First: I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve fallen ill, Mabel! That throat infection sounds terrible – take good care and I hope you already feel a bit better!
    Second: I’ve been missing you in the blogosphere since September! I reckoned you were busy at work, as that seems what most people are when they’re not blogging, and now that I know you were ill, I wish it had been that! 7 years of blogging is amazing! I’m in my 4th and find it harder to make myself write another blog post, starting with once a week, to twice a month and now fighting for even once a month… well, you obviously know how it is. 😉 I read very often that you shouldn’t be blogging when you don’t feel like it, and yet I have a feeling that many force themselves out of habit, as do I. I think my reluctance to stop entirely has something to do with not wanting to give up this community and yet it doesn’t feel as good anymore as it used to. As you also said, visuals become more and more important and in fact I joined Instagram last year and after an initial struggle find it now more satisfying than WP. I’d like to know if that’s only the case because it’s ‘new’ or another indicator that my blogging days are probably over.
    What I’ve noticed about blogging absence too is that you have more time at your hands which in this crazy world is a true gift. And if you enjoy it more than blogging I say go for it! But I know I’ll miss reading your posts which were always among my favourites here. Be well, my friend! ❤

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  4. I had no idea you had a growing desire to leave blogging, Mabel. I understand it’s a lot of work but for me it’s a part of me. I cannot imagine not blogging. I love it so much I’ve made it my career, and I’m fortunate other people like what I write enough to subscribe. I’ve always loved your writing and appreciate the numerous hours you’ve spent crafting the quality pieces for us readers. Whether you continue to write here once a month or once every 6 months, I do hope to contine to read your opinions. You’ve always had fresh perspectives on a range of topics and I’ve appreciated that about you. Love always, no matter what you do online and offline! xo

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  5. Dear friend, sweet Mabel, I have read your post more than twice, and still not answered. Maybe because I feel the same. I am leaving this game, slowly. We have had a great time, haven’t we? I love reading your thought provoking posts, and I love writing my answers and musings about them. You are a pro in everything you do.

    I was thinking of leaving about two years ago (also after 7 years of blogging…), but got an offer I could not turn down. To host a Challenge together with three other ladies. It sparked my interest again. But now, the challenge has grown too big for me, and I find myself “inside” the screen far too much for my own good. My old parents are very frail and I help them every day. I am depressed by what is happening to the Earth, the only planet we have. I cry for Australia. my daughter will take her big exam soon and my son will be moving into his new house next week. I will of course help him. In fact, life is doing its best to make me work with what life is really about.

    I hope you are feeling better now, Mabel, and I hope to hear from you sometimes in the future as well. Now, I will be going to my parents for a couple of hours. Be well, take care – sending my love. ♥

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  6. Beautiful post. Full of truth, honest and authenticity. I have gained so much value out of all the posts of yours I have read. I know that you will do what is right for you and it’s great you have so many posts here we can all return and enjoy. You are right,” Being overly busy is not cute”. It’s been such a privilege to connect with you here. You are a talented writer and I know I will read some of your work again somewhere! Happy New Year x Lita

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  7. Go with the flow, be like water. If stopping makes you feel mellow, stop. I’d say, hedonism rulz. 🙂 (As for me, I’d miss your thoughts. But I/us are not the one you must write for. It’s for yourself.)

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