Five Reasons I Started Blogging and Why You Should, Too
This is a guest post by Jennifer Hawks, who is a wife and full-time working mom from St. Louis, Missouri. She is a 2012 graduate from St. Louis Christian College and enjoys writing as she journeys through life. You can connect with her via email, her blog, and Facebook.
Let’s be honest. Blogging is something that a lot of people do. There are food blogs, travel blogs, sports blogs, fashion blogs, Mommy blogs, tech blogs, and Dad blogs. I could go on and on, probably for days. So why in the world would I, a random mom and wife, think there is value in taking time out of my already hectic day to write about life as I know it?
Before the first time I pushed post, I had to sit, reflect, and ask myself “What will happen when people see not just the good, but also the ugly side of life, the ugly side of me?” “What if I put something out there that I regret later and I can’t take it back?” “What if someone misunderstands something that I have said?” “What if someone takes something personal that was never directed at them?” “What if, what if, what if?”
In the midst of all of my questions and concerns, I decided to blog anyway. Here are five reasons why:
1. It’s good for my soul.
It might not make sense to someone who doesn’t understand the freedom that writing can bring, but for me, writing provides a peace that is rare. I legitimately find comfort in writing. It helps me gather my thoughts, process through joy and sorrow, and it motivates me to sometimes make changes.
If you don’t know me, it’s important to note that I am a thinker. Not the kind of thinker that loves brain games and word puzzles, but the kind whose mind runs endlessly, keeping me awake at night. For me, writing wipes away the mental fog and it can even help organize my thoughts. Writing brings rest and as a mom with a busy schedule, I adore anything that can bring rest.
2. Life is hard.
Let’s be honest here, getting through each day brings with it many different obstacles. Even when life is going well, we can face hurdles and potholes that send us on a roller coaster we cannot control. We sometimes stub our pinky toe, leaving us screaming words we haven’t said since middle school. All of this is normal. It’s okay.
For me, writing helps ease some of that. It provides an outlet and a way to gather myself to move on to the next obstacle with an eagerness to come out on top.
3. Transparency builds community.
It’s really easy to go through life convincing others around us that our lives are calmer, easier, or less messy than theirs. Maybe we don’t come out and say it, but often times we keep private the struggles where we most need support.
The more I share, the more I realize there is not a single thing I have experienced in parenting, or marriage, or in my job, or even personally that is brand new to the human race. (I know, crazy right?) Somebody out there, and probably in my close circle of friends and family either has experienced, is experiencing, or will experience the same trials and joys that I am going through. What an amazing thing it is to take off a mask that I have worn so well for so long. Some of the best relationships I have formed have been through individuals who have said, “I have been there, I understand, let me sit in this with you so you are not alone.”
4. The hard things need talked about.
I feel a huge passion to talk more openly about “the hard stuff.” There are so many topics that are off limits and rarely discussed. Simply put, I hate it! I was originally going to say “I don’t get it,” but that’s just not true. I do get it. I get that it’s vulnerable to give people insight into the darkest moments in our lives. With that can come shame and regret, and those two things alone can send someone down a very dangerous road.
But as I said above, there is nothing any of us are going through that is new to the human race. So let’s stop avoiding things that are uncomfortable to talk about and pretending like we haven’t been there, too.
5. It’s not just about the hard stuff.
I believe in an amazing and loving God who has provided me with an outlet when even writing cannot do that. I have seen Him work in indescribable ways to restore brokenness, bring joy, and to light up the darkest corners of my heart when nothing else was able. That, my friends, is something to be celebrated and talked about, not kept quiet.
Also, there is great beauty in not only celebrating the joys as they happen, but in looking back and seeing how far you have come. I love reflecting on the shattered pieces of life as they are transformed into a new and whole creation.
For me, I have chosen blogging. I know writing doesn’t have the same effect on everyone that it has on me. Maybe for you, its music, art, intentional conversation, prayer, or journaling that provides you with some of these things. Whatever it may be, I encourage you to pursue it more often and more intentionally. I know for me I don’t regret facing all of the “What ifs” I originally had to ask myself.
Why do you blog? Share in the comments below.
Photo: Unsplash/Sergei Zolkin