So I think whatever semblance of holding onto NaBloPoMo I had officially went out the window. I mean, you can kind of play off missing a day by adding an extra blog, but I don’t think I can quite cover two days in a row. I mean, not only did I not sit down to write, I didn’t even make an effort to check stats or notifications, didn’t read anything; it was as if WordPress simply ceased to exist for a few days.
I had what I refer to as a “FTS (fu** that sh**) moment”, when for reasons justified or not, I just stop caring and can’t be bothered with it. (Of course the great thing about a “moment” is that it is up to interpretation just how long that officially lasts.) Maybe it’s a defense mechanism, maybe it’s a character flaw, I don’t know. I like to just think it’s one of the inherent qualities of my “shoot from the hip” mentality and is neither good nor bad. It just is what it is.
I once had a FTS moment with my major of choice in my mid-20s (marketing) and just stopped going to school midsemester, took me years to finally go back under a different curriculum and to pay off those student loans. I knew it was dumb at the time, but it’s like a switch that, once flipped, it is nearly impossible to flip back the other direction. I’ve done it with certain relationships too, where I just got tired of making the same circle all over again and I just shut down and excused myself from the situation. FTS, indeed.
The biggest reason was that, after a few weeks of healthy growth, the blog took a steady dip in visibility / interaction. It is frustrating to concentrate your best efforts into better presented material and then watch the general interest take a nosedive. Some personal friends stopped reading because daily content was just too much to keep up with as a reader, which I genuinely don’t fault them for, and even the ones that do read would say “yeah, I read your blog” and never gave any kind of feedback. I take that as a bad sign. If I genuinely think something is good, I say so; if I don’t, I don’t say anything, unless pressed and then I’ll scramble for that balance between honesty and positivity.
And I am not one to press, usually.
I think one of the contributing factors to the general decline in visibility is that I stopped doing the daily prompts. I didn’t actively decide to stop doing them; they just started to suck, and I had other topics I was more interested in writing about. I guess I can’t complain about falling off the radar when I stopped putting myself in visible places. I may just have to start doing them again for the sake of building an audience. All grand intentions of writing for the sake of writing aside, your words don’t mean much if nobody is reading them. All zen philosophies of your words finding the right people at the right time aside as well, I don’t think anybody is excused from actively expanding their sphere of influence.
The biggest factor though, I believe, is my lack of progress with my weight loss.
One of my biggest accomplishments is losing 80 pounds in a year, and I did it the old fashioned way. Ate better, exercised, etc. No pills, no surgeries. I have since gained half of that back, and it is something I am incredibly self conscious of, not just because I feel gross but I didn’t make good on my previous initiative. I lost ground.
So I thought about the time investment involved in losing weight again, writing 3-4 blog entries per week of content I want to do PLUS another 2-3 entries for daily prompt blogs, invest the time in interacting with other blogs, starting up photography again plus getting into video editing, going back to school, etc. etc. etc.
So, yeah… I hit a FTS moment. However, as an older and wiser David, I can recognize what is happening and take responsibility for the outcome. I did over a month of nearly daily blogs (I am pretty sure I averaged 800-1000 words daily from mid October to mid November, at least). Considering November is nearly over, I am going to just focus on putting out the kind of content I am interested in, with the occasional daily prompt. Having plans for the future are good, in terms of expanding content, but for now, I think the fitness needs to take center stage until I can get back to a point of maintenance and focus on other things, and blogging about my weight loss will drive up visibility.
It is obvious where the emphasis needs to be right now. I recognize that this is actually a bigger step in my personal development, and I’m about to trek into uncharted territory. Hope you folks got your cheering voices ready; I’m going to need some encouragement…