You need to chill with your blog already.

You might have noticed some inconsistent posting on Mascara Warrior over the past year. My content has been all over the place and my posting schedule was even worse.  Some of you might even be getting this in an email or in your RSS feed and wondering who the heck I am. (Well, hi!)

I'm only one person, but let me tell ya: I can stress out like it's nobody's business. I'm an expert at having regular panic attacks, especially over things that ultimately don't matter.

I first started this blog as a hobby to share things that I love. It didn't matter that no one read my blog posts: I loved typing them up and hitting that "publish" button all the same. At the time, I was working a summer job during college and had a lot of free time. It was a fun hobby that could lead to connections with other bloggers down the line. As a timid young woman hiding behind her computer screen, it was a win-win situation.

I enjoyed blogging so much that I did everything I could to become better at it. I thought about it often.  I looked up tips online to make me a better writer, social media manager, and graphic designer. I wanted to do it all so that I could reach my blog's full potential.

I didn't know it at the time, but this was my first mistake. Looking up ways for people to tell me how to enjoy a creative hobby of mine wasn't going to end well.

My content switched gears completely. I stopped writing about things that I loved and focused on what other people wanted to read. I wanted to become a resource for my readers, but I struggled with finding what I'm good at. I was embarrassed about my old content because it wasn't useful to anyone.

My sister taught me these wise words,
as explained in an earlier post.
This responsibility to provide this pillar content overwhelmed me. If I didn't post enough, people wouldn't find my blog. If I didn't use SEO keywords then I wouldn't get any hits. Bad graphics? No one is going to bother clicking on that link. If I didn't post good stuff, the few people who found me wouldn't stick around.

I made myself an editorial calendar and failed at sticking to it. I would be upset with myself if missed a deadline. I stressed out about my blog like it was my full-time job. Ultimately, I wasn't even proud of the new content that I put out there.

I knew I had enough. I was already dealing with a lot: my first full-time job, managing my mental health, and figuring out the rest of my life (oh boy).  I knew that more stress on top of that wasn't healthy.  Something had to give.

I've read a lot of blogs over the past few years. Plenty have come and gone, but the ones I enjoy the most are ones where I feel like I have a connection with the blogger. Authenticity and purposeful writing are concepts I value in a blog - I want to incorporate those back into mine.

I don't need to hold myself to impossible standards for the sake of "blogging correctly." I want to be more lenient with myself and my blogging standards. I want to relax and reclaim this space as my own. I want to write about what gives me life instead of worrying about my bounce rate or page views or pleasing people I've never met.

And you know what? I'm sure it will be more interesting to read.

So, hello again. My name is Emily. Let's do things the right way this time.

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