This summer, I took the advice I’ve long admired and never achieved – I took a proper break from work, and when we went away on holiday, the laptop did not. This feeling that I really ought to stay available could be a mental hang-up from no longer doing a full time 9-5 in the office job…taking a clean break from work seemed like a right and proper thing to do in those days, and perhaps now that I don’t do it all the time, and work directly for my own clients, I’m subconsciously thinking I must be constantly online if necessary. Whatever the reason, this year I took the clean break that I used to have – and as the weeks with the boys on school holidays rolled by, the little break from blogging and social media turned into a longer one.
In taking this work-life balance advice about giving yourself proper time away – and extending it – I was soon in direct contravention of the advice I give all my blogging clients: Be Consistent. My regular weekly blog fell silent, and although I had put on social media that I was taking a break, my thoughts have turned ever more guiltily to my neglected catalogue.
So with the children dispatched back to school with every bit of clobber demanded by junior school, I’ve turned back to nurturing that relationship with my blog again, and reminding myself of all of the many great reasons for doing it. There are the tech benefits – keeping your website updated, and standing a chance of being found by search engines – and there are the business benefits of talking directly to your current and future clients, and demonstrating your expertise. But I’ve got a few other reasons for falling back in love with my blog, and why it’s very special to me.
You Get To Know Me
Credibility is a big benefit of blogging, and professionally it’s great to build that online portfolio of your expertise. But this is a little bit more than that, because I like to infuse me into what I write – whether it’s about work stuff, home stuff or on the Brand Blog. I’m at the centre of my business – when you commission RLC Words, you get me – so you should be able to get to know me a bit on my blog. It’s the perfect place to show a little of what you do, a little of who you are, and a little of what you value.
It’s a Challenge
Contrary to another piece of my own advice, I don’t always know what I’m going to write each week. Unless I’ve got something specific to promote that I’ve planned in advance – like on the Brand Blog – I like to keep it loose, so I can write about whatever is foremost in my mind that week. I do have list of fallback topics in case I get seriously stuck, but generally I don’t decide until the day before, and that makes it quite exciting and challenging at the same time. There’s nothing quite like that little moment when the right cogs click into place, and I surprise myself with the right topic.
A Post Can Brighten Someone’s Day
A blog is more often than not a one-way communication, so sometimes it can feel a bit like you’re shouting into the void – especially when social media exposure lets you down. But I have been told before that reading my blog brings a regular smile, and that alone makes it worth doing. That is a truly lovely thing – and if I can tell people something they didn’t know, or hadn’t thought of before, that’s another lovely thing, even if I never know it’s made a difference.
Your blog does take work, but it can bring you a great deal of joy – and business benefits as well. It’s your personal channel to your perfect customers, and just like any relationship, the more you put into it the more you will get out. So if you’ve been meaning to fall back in love with your blog – or you’d like to start one up – just give me a shout, and we’ll get to work! I’ve got just the thing to kindle that spark: my Blogging Starter Pack