How to get off the blogging bandwagon

SillyGrrl.com // How to get off the blogging bandwagon

Dear internet – it’s time to get off the band wagon. I know I’ve written about this before and I will probably write about it again, but it’s something that drives me absolutely crazy. I keep seeing the same exact outfits, DIY projects, recipes, even the style of writing repeated through blog after blog. I’m BORED.

We’re all crammed into this tiny bubble of blogging, tweeting, Instagramming. It makes us so aware of what other people are doing all the time, intentionally or not, we end up mimicking each other.

It’s like when you watch a TV series all in one go – hours and hours where all the actors have southern accents or British accents and you find your voice and thoughts beginning to sound like they’re part of the show.

We’re so consumed by what other people are doing that we’ve started absorbing it into our lives and our blogs.

I used to follow over a hundred blogs and now that number is dwindling as they all mush together into the same repetitive boring slop. I don’t want to do what everyone else is doing just because they have tons of followers and comments. I want to do what I like. I’m not into vintage dresses and clunky shoes and taking pictures on coffee dates. I’m into stripes and combat boots and taking pictures of my growing muscles.

And I’m not writing because something is “soooo cuuuuuteee” and promoting shopping lists from my sponsors, I’m writing because I want to help people make their sites bad ass, take risks, chase their passions and not wake up in two years thinking “Crap…why didn’t I start this sooner?”

I’m not saying my tutorials are first-offs and no one has ever written about coding and escaping a day job, hundreds of people have, but I don’t follow any of those people. I don’t watch what other developers are writing and I only follow a few designers. I listen to my readers & clients and see what issues they are running into and then I post tutorials to help them, not to keep up everyone else and their perfect internet lives.

So how to you stay true to yourself? First off, remember there is not one other person EVER who will see things the way you do and say things the way you do and it’s a shame for you to waste your time taking on the traits of people online to build some image of the perfect person.

(I’m not perfect – I was extremely crabby on Friday, danced until I was sweaty and my feet were numb on Saturday and spent Sunday morning rehearsal laying on a landing mat because hanging upside down and spinning sounded like a horrible idea.)

Take a few weeks away from reading blogs, tweeting, pinning, Instagramming to find your voice. Would you really love the things you love & write the things you write if you weren’t being bombarded the same posts/pins/tweets over and over every day? Share what comes from your heart instead of reposting the things that are trending online in the hope that your blog will grow.

Do you know how the biggest bloggers became popular? They were not afraid to be authentic, put themselves out there and share what they love even if it wasn’t popular at the time. They knew that not everyone would like them or what they had to say and they were confident enough and loved themselves enough to be who they are anyway.

I don’t follow bloggers who make me want to be more like them, I follow bloggers who inspire me to me more like ME. Here are a few of my favorites who appear to truly follow the beat of their very own drum & don’t give a shit about what everyone else is doing…Sarah, Kathleen, Danielle, Veronica.

Who are your favorite authentic, inspiring bloggers?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
dashed-line
dashed-line

Comments

  1. says

    Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU! I have been struggling with this so damn much. I am going to print this and highlight it and put it by my computer.

  2. says

    I love this! Thanks for writing about it. It’s something I’ve been thinking about but haven’t verbalized. My blog is all over the place and since I trashed my last blog, took a break and came back with a new blog, people aren’t reading it, which is fine. I’m writing it for me and I have to remember that. And I enjoy it. And it makes ME happy. I think that’s why finding your blog has been so great. You are just you and I really, really, really appreciate that. :)

    • says

      Thanks Windsor! That makes me really happy to hear because I try to come up with original content and stay true to my voice as much as possible. Nobody read my blog for a long time too – just gotta keep doing your own thing and you’ll eventually connect with your own fan base :)

  3. says

    OMG I have said the same exact thing. No offense but the “fashion bloggers” can be the worst offenders. Clothes pics and the same poses in every photo everyday is boring and watered down!

    I have taken a break from blogging a bit because I was getting “scattered brained” with my own material and I want people to relate to me, not just to see I put up a post and go hey look what I wrote!

    I am a fan of this and now will add you to my blogLovin’! I love this post thanks for the reminder again! Kudos!

    -Kiwi
    kiwithebeauty.com

    • says

      Thanks for commenting Kiwi! I think a blog break is the best way to gather your thoughts, find your voice and not just post for the sake of posting. You blog is definitely not one of those cookie cutters – high five!

  4. says

    I SOOOO can relate to this!! I have become so bored with fashion bloggers style posts to the point that everybody’s clothes look the same, and their blog template too. I refuse to get on “the bandwagon”. Staying true is my main objective. I definitely do not want to be another cookie-cutter blogger. Thank you so much for posting this. I thought I was the only one who felt this way.

    • says

      I’m glad I’m not the only one feeling this way too – I honestly wasn’t sure how this post would be received, so I’m glad to read your comment :)

  5. says

    I’m one of many who needed to read this post. I have been stuck in a rut with my blogging and this has helped me. It’s easier to be myself than to try being someone else!

  6. says

    What a great post! I have been thinking about that a lot lately. I follow a bunch of blogs, but many of them have become well… just copies or clones. At first I didn’t notice that, but then suddenly I realized I might enjoy blogs that are less fancy, but more authentic (even if they are about things not closest to my hobbies and passions). After some time this authenticity starts to shine through more strongly and makes you stick with a blog. As for my own blog – it just makes me happy and I do it for myself. I have couple of readers and I love them. I can’t seem to bother to seduce new readers. I just wanna do my thing.

    • says

      That’s the way to do it! Be yourself and people will be drawn to you. I’ve been doing the same thing lately – weeding out all the clones and copies from my reader.

  7. Ashleigh says

    This is so damn true! I’m happy to hear someone talking about this! If you aren’t being authentic to yourself as a writer/blogger/artist then what is the point?

    • says

      Agreed! I think some people see other bloggers posting their “perfect” lives and watch as they gain followers while their own blog doesn’t. Much easier to hop on the trends than work on your own voice, but it’s an easy way to lose one’s self in the long run.

  8. says

    My blog thank goodness has always been all over the place and I like it like that!!
    Thanks for this great post.

  9. says

    Great post! I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. I’ve had a book blog for years (that I stopped to start my new one), and, somehow, my blog identity was way stronger at the time. Recently, I cleaned up my Bloglovin’ subscriptions because I was tired of seeing the same things everywhere. Same themes, same pictures, same ideas… It gets boring! And I really don’t want to fall into that, although I’m aware of being influenced by others. Again, it was easier being a book blogger than a ‘personal’ blogger! I agree with everything you said, and I really want to stay true to myself and getting rid of anything that is ‘not reaaly me’ on my blog. :)

  10. says

    Oh do I agree. I talked and talked about this on my blog as well. I see it on Pinterest too, the same old same old, over and over again. I just get tired of the same stuff over and over again. I don’t understand this fear to not be yourself. I’ve never been a fan of the norm and one of my favorite quotes is by Mark Twain and goes, “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.”

    I think people fret over image and what’s “popular” (though I’ve always been a fan of the fuck what’s popular attitude) so much that they forget to be themselves, speak their minds truly, and do what’s best for what they want in life. It’s a shame. I recently made the decision to leave writing a blog altogether and the only way I knew how to share my thoughts on it was in a honest and humble way. I personally find it dishonest to copy over and over again. Don’t get me wrong, nothing we say or do is 100% original, as you stated, because we learned those very things from others, from experiences, from books, from movies, from music, from family, that they become us. But, as you said, no one person is like us, and I wish more bloggers expressed their uniqueness and didn’t hide behind what’s “trending.”

  11. says

    I like! Now I do not feel so bad about taking my time to get involved in pinning and on instagram, though I will get there. I am fairly new to blogging and sometimes when I attend a blog hop, I feel really left out or wonder if I should be there, b/c everyone is blogging about fashion, make or food. Now, don’t get me wrong I enjoy looking at their blogsand reading their reviews sometimes I wonder if I am boring them to death.Living F.A.B.ulously on Purpose

  12. says

    I’ve always had the mindset that if I always stay true to my interests and my voice, then only the people who should be reading my blog, will be. A no-brainer, but that’s how I stay on course even when I was frustrated and wondering why my little blog was floundering. Not being true to yourself is not the answer! It’s also a weird feeling when what I’ve been into for y e a r s and felt like an outside for is suddenly “in”.

    I’ll be checking out the links in your blog and the comments, but like you, I don’t read a whole ton of blogs! The posts on xoJane.com are usually pretty interesting, and Rookiemag.com even though it’s geared toward teen girls. Justine Musk’s blog justinemusk.com is pretty awesome. Great post!

  13. says

    OMFG! I had a post similar to this one about a year ago. It’s like a rerun of the stepford wives in the blogging community sometimes. Fashion blogs with questionable fashions…blogs full of duckface photos, and pseudo-hipster poses. Same shit over and over and over(excuse my Egyptian).

    It’s great to see I’m not alone in the blogosphere!

  14. says

    Love this! (Although brace yourself – I am a fan of vintage clothes and clunky shoes) Our blog is linked to our online store – so obviously it’s going to promote fashion – but I like that I don’t have to stick to that if I don’t have to, and the fact that I have ABSOLUTE TOTAL FREEDOM not to tweet, insta, FB or blog every second of my day. I do this for work, and in my off time no one at all knows what I do, where I go, and who with. And to be honest, some of my favourite blogs (which have since gone into ‘remission’) have been ones that are totally unrelated to fashion and inspire me to travel. Popular imagination was on blog I LOVED and waited with baited breath for her next post. Thanks for your recommendations – checking them out now.
    http://www.ahkavintage.com
    Join our $150 dress giveaway!

  15. says

    I completely agree and I do tire of blog after blog posting shopping lists of the same item. I have a general rule that if the blog only seems to post stock images then I don’t want to read.. or similarly if they only post close up pictures of items they’re reviewing. I like seeing pictures of the blogger because at the end of the day, the person writing is pretty much the only unique thing any blogger owns!

    However I do think some people get a bad rep for liking things that are popular when sometimes they just happen to like stuff that’s popular. There was a whole ‘discussion’ on Twitter the other day about how it’s so annoying that bloggers always write that they love tea in their bios and how it’s funny that these bloggers think it says something deep and meaningful about them. Now… I write I like tea in my bio. I don’t think it makes me cool, I really just like tea. I drink about 8 cups a day!

    So while I do agree that blogging has become a copy of a copy of a copy in some cases, there are also those bloggers who ARE being genuine, they just happen to like stuff that’s considered a bit twee.

    Sophie :)

  16. says

    Sarah, I commend you for putting this out there. I just wrote today that I don’t know a think about instagram ~ there are so many moving parts to running a business. Being new to all this again, I’m going to write about things I have a passion for and to hell with the same old thing. Thanks.

  17. says

    Dead on, as always! In the past couple of months I’ve noticed myself hitting the unsubscribe button more and more because I’ve just felt like everything is a copy of a copy of a copy…. and well… none of it is stuff that I’m particularly all that interested in anyway.

    I know when I’m looking for blogs to follow, I’m looking for people who are telling stories about their lives and/or the business and are obviously passionate about what they’re writing about… and I feel like that’s hard to find these days.

  18. says

    Great advice. It’s so easy to end up copying someone else’s style or get stuck in sticking to certain topics you think readers are looking for. I’ve been toying around with many different subject matters since I started my blog a year and a half ago. And I’m slowly but surely finding out what works, and what doesn’t work for me. My family and friends loved when I posted recipes and food pics, but I found that I hated trying to get a good shot of my dinner in a poorly lit kitchen, when I really just wanted to eat it!! I work in fashion by day, but found that it doesn’t interest me to blog about that on a frequent basis either. So I do it only when something inspires me! And I recently started trying to incorporate more issues that matter to me too. One way I’ve been doing that is adding a “Daily Green Tip” at the end of each blog post. I’m inspired by new bloggers daily and I often end up following new blogs that are suggested in a post like this one, so thank you!

    • says

      You’re welcome! I definitely come up with better content when I’m inspired (or annoyed, ha!) then if I’m just trying to post for the sake of posting.

  19. says

    Kick ass and take names lady! Great advice, and well thought out without playing the blame game. Keep up the hard work, it’s paying off.

  20. says

    I’m loving this post! One thing I see a lot of people do is hear the message ‘be authentic’ from their favourite bloggers, but interpret ‘authentic’ as whatever voice their favourite blogger has. No! That’s not authentic to you, that’s copying what’s authentic to someone else! It’s like the word has lost its meaning. Maybe we need to start using ‘boring’ words like original again, to get the point across.

    I’m working on a project to learn one new craft every month this year. A lot of the feedback has been envious readers speaking along the lines of, ‘Oh I wish I could learn everything as easily and succeed so flawlessly.’ It really made me reflect on how bloggers can affect readers by the way we present what we do. Showing my f*** ups is half the fun now!

    • says

      I love that! Showing your process is a great way to keep it real on your site and keep from turning into the perfect blogger with the perfect life.

  21. says

    I’m just getting started in the blog world but I definitely see what you’re talking about. A few years ago all the blogs I read were original and now they look so similar…same crafts, same style, same photoshop. It’s changed. One blog I absolutely love to read is Girls Gone Child. It’s the most anti-mommy mommy-blog I know. I love her style, her voice, her attitude, her spunk. And she writes beautifully. I don’t even have kids and I love her blog. I think you have to have a little bit of ‘this is me…take it or leave it’.

    • says

      Thanks for sharing Lauren – I’m gonna check her site out. Things have totally changed – before everyone was trying to stand out and now way too many people are trying to recreate that magic blog growing formula.

  22. says

    Oh god, YES SARAH. Thank you for posting this. I read through my Bloglovin’ feed today and just felt so f’ing depressed, everything was so damn boring and the god damn same. Thanks for keeping it real. :)

  23. says

    I skip over the ‘this is what I wore this week’ blogs, the work from home blogs, and ‘my latest craft’ blogs.. I like real blogs about real people.. Honest blogs.. My favorite blogs are: Ordinary Miracles & The Crazy 9, Hyperbole and a half, and She Stands..

  24. says

    This is so great! I’m going through a weird blogging thing myself where I’m not sure the direction it’s headed. I miss the days when I just had a LiveJournal, before I had a shop, before Etsy, all that stuff where I just spat randomness from life and people connected with that and to this day I’m still friends with many of my old LJ friends. More blogging from the heart is needed! :)

  25. says

    I love this so much! One thing that I will say is the great thing about the blogosphere is that if the blogs you’re reading start to get stale or phone it in (or your tastes change and you want something different) there’s always a rabbit hole of amazing writers and inspiring people to fall into nearby.

    One thing I did this year was remove all the widely followed design and craft blogs from my reader to shift my head space so I wasn’t seeing posts that didn’t light me up anymore. It’s made a huge difference in my enjoyment of blog reading and in my feelings about the larger blog world too.

  26. says

    Thank you thank you thank you!

    I am so over the posts that are blatantly hoping to be pinned or that are just “curated” posts of pretty things. I want blogs to make me laugh, inspire me, or make me think.

    You? I just found you but as a fellow freelance web designer, I think you’ll inspire me. :)

  27. says

    How funny. I haven’t been near my Bloglovin’ account in a few weeks and as I scrolled through countless blogs with the same old crap your blog and Kyla Roma’s were the two I actually read. I found myself thinking how I need to clean out my account and only keep the blogs I actually read. I also began thinking about the posts I want to make. And then I read this.What timing Sarah, I love reading your posts and I particularly like how you speak the truth. Truth is what gets you places. Keep it up.
    Éadaoin

  28. says

    I hear ya!! I would love to find my “tribe” online – girls who I feel I can connect with and who blog about things I’m interested in. It’s hard to know where to look. Thanks for the blog recommendations.
    xx Michelle

  29. says

    I’ve never read your blog before today. Thanks to Kyla Roma for posting about it. This is something that I really needed to read.

    I only follow about 20 or so blogs, and the reason I started following them was because I liked the pictures and sometimes the cool crafts. But as time went on I started seeing the same photos, and the same crafts, and then I started to realize that a lot of what I was reading was crappy crap that was posted just for the sake of posting every day or more.

    It started to depress me. When I started seeking out other blogs to read, I wanted to be inspired, not depressed! I couldn’t keep up, and I’m older and fatter, and a lot less talented than the creators of the blogs I was following. A lot less popular too!

    Of course I would love to have thousands of followers and be a part of a group of bloggers. Of course I would love to quit my day job and blog full time. Of course I would love to have a little online vintage shop. And of course I would love to blog all about the little crafts I do or the projects that take up most of my time.

    I would love all of those things, but ultimately that’s not what gives me satisfaction. I started writing a blog to share my thoughts and adventures with my friends who were far away. It evolved into a blog about remembering my life, or at least that’s how it appears on the surface. But the real reason that I write is to help me reflect on my life, to come to grips with my feelings, and to have clarity about who I am. I am the real me when I write, so thank you for reminding me that I’m doing the right thing.

    Help Peattie Remember isn’t about me putting on my best outfits and taking a bunch of selfies once a week, it isn’t about this week’s cocktail or smoothie recipe, it isn’t about a bunch of stuff I saw on the internet that I liked. It’s about me. The struggles and gratitude I have in this extraordinary life of mine. Thank you for reminding me of that! xo

    • says

      Thank you so much for your comment. I love that you’re writing for the purpose of knowing yourself, which is much more interesting than a blog about vintage and crafts and outfits. When I started blogging a long long time ago people thrived on their individuality. And judging from the number of comments on this post, it won’t be too long before we’re headed back in that direction.

  30. says

    Thank you so much for posting this! I’m in a bit of a writers rut at the moment, and find that the 100,000 blogs that I’ve bookmarked are just stressing me out and causing major blog envy. :( It’s not fun. I’m going to do a bookmark cleanse today and only follow bloggers who inspire me, make me think, cry, laugh – whatever. As long as they are helping me grow. Also considering taking a few weeks off to recalibrate. Thanks again this was so needed today :) xx Kamina

  31. says

    Thank you for this post Sarah. I’ve long thought like this way and love reading your take on it. I’ve followed your blog for probably almost 4 years? And have loved watching you evolve, all the while staying true to yourself. Keep rocking it out, sister!

  32. says

    I know this is a post from the past, a great one! I found a blogger you must read if you are looking for a breath of fresh air!

    Princess Burlap has one of the most unique writing styles EVER. Seriously worth a look if you’re still looking for non bandwagon bloggers!

Trackbacks

  1. [...] I cleared out my Bloglovin account of all the samey stuff that’s been clogging it up and then clicked on XOSarah’s post about being an individual blogger and it was such a breath of fresh air. Read all about it here. [...]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>