Reasons for Telling Your Story

What should I write here? What about here, what should I say? And when I get over there what on earth will I be rambling, babbling and writing about?

What will be discovered, uncovered, rediscovered or covered?

When you read a post or an article online, what do you think about it?

Do you think about what impression it has made on you?

Whether you liked it or disliked?

Are you arguing with the words on the cyber page or nodding your head in agreement?

Are you perhaps preparing to write a comment to tell the author exactly what you think of what they said, to share yourself with them as they shared themselves with you?

Do you wonder about the author, are you curious about them enough to read their bio, their About page? Do you have questions which you want to ask them about themselves, but then talk yourself out of doing that because… why?

Do you want to share your story?

Do you wish you could share your story, your thoughts, feelings, life, the way that others do?

Do you think you’d do a better or worse job than they do at writing?

Do you think writing is difficult or easy?

Do you think blogging is a pleasurable pastime or hard work?

That last question was inspired by reading a post by a fairly new blogger who mentioned that blogging required hard work if you wanted to be successful at it.

This is her post if you’d like to read it – Keep It Alive: Is blogging taking over your life?

I’ve been blogging for several years now, and have been through many phases of blogging throughout those years.

The first year is probably the hardest, the learning curve is steep, and it doesn’t matter how much preparation you do, how many How-To-Blog posts you read, nothing can prepare you for the ups and downs, the surprises, and challenges of doing it yourself.

The biggest challenge comes from within yourself.

Most new bloggers start out powered up by a rushing gush of creative energy. Post after post comes flowing out of them. Words burst onto the page. It’s very exciting and you get high as a kite on it.

But what goes up up and away… often comes crashing back down to the ground.

At about the 3 month (sometimes sooner, sometimes later) mark many bloggers hit a wall, get writer’s block, run out of steam, fuel, ideas, words… they have nothing left to say, they’ve said it all very quickly in the flurry of posts they wrote while they were high on freedom of self-expression.

Now what?

Some bloggers begin to slowly ghost their blogs. Others begin to fall into the many pitfalls… those ones which old bloggers may have warned them about but they didn’t listen because they couldn’t see them, that sort of thing wasn’t going to happen to them.

One of the many creative traps lying in wait for bloggers is the popular post.

If one of your posts happens to get the attention of others, gets read a lot, gets many hits, gets the stats to climb up, gets plenty of ‘Likes’, gets shared around social media, gets a lot of comments… it’s great!

Congratulations, you’ve done it, made it! You’re interesting, what you had to say is interesting, people are interested in what you have said, in you, and want more!

However maybe none of your other posts have done as well as that post. Why? What’s wrong with them, why aren’t they interesting?

What was it about that particular post which made it a star, so popular, so liked, so interesting?

How can you write it again and again and again. How can you repeat that performance over and over and over. So that all of your posts get as much attention and acclaim?

There must be a formula, right?

Is it writing what others want to read?

But what if what others want to read isn’t what you want to write about?

What if that one popular post was a fluke? Maybe it was your guaranteed 15 minutes of fame and now that’s it, your time in the spotlight is up and it’s another blogger’s turn.

What if what interests others doesn’t really interest you?

But you want others to be interested in you…

So maybe you should force yourself to feign interest in what interests them, then they’ll have to read what you write, right, because you’re telling the story they want to hear.

This is an interesting post by Max of The Ultimate Psyche on Pointless Overthinking: The One Thing This World Needs More Of

His advice is great, and his About page is hilarious.

His post was interesting, he seems interesting, and so I decided to follow his blog even though after a cursory glance at his blog post titles I rolled my eyes a bit.

He’s using an overused formula – 3 Things which, 4 Ways to, 5 Secrets that, 6 People who – which has been overly recommended for blogging success.

However since his writing seems different from the norm, I took a quick peek behind the titles and he’s definitely doing something different, something which is… well, him being himself and sharing that, which is always interesting.

It doesn’t matter if you think your story is interesting or not, it doesn’t matter if you think you are interesting or not, your purpose in life is to share your story, yourself, however you choose to do it.

It can be through writing, photography, drawing, videos, song, fashion, cooking, parenting, playing, talking, doing, being…

This is a great idea and a great blog which I’ve recently started following, she’s taking a wee holiday break, but her words are still working, telling their stories – Ask A Gen-Xer because nobody ever does

Even if you choose not to tell your story, your story will tell itself through you whether you share yourself or not.

That’s life… the story which tells itself through nature unfolding, evolving, revolving.

But it’s more fun to participate in the telling of our story… that’s one of the things I’ve discovered through blogging.

And that’s one of the reasons I love blogging, there’s so much to discover by doing it.

It’s an interactive adventure.

or a blog

A while ago I got very angry at someone, a regular reader of my blog, who told me in a comment to take time off blogging to write a book.

They told me I had to do it, that they were not going to accept my answer of “No”, that to them I was making excuses for not doing what they’d decided I should do, and that I was now in their firing line so they were going to nag me until I did it.

Their comment made me wonder if they’d actually read my posts – they’d liked them, commented on them, but… what had they read?

Then I wondered if I was actually saying what I thought I was saying when I wrote my posts.

Even though I write really long posts, I leave a lot out of them – the stuff I think as I write, the stuff I think as I read what I write. I don’t always know what I’ve left out because when re-reading my posts… the blanks get filled in.

But the thing is… even if I wrote down every thought I was having, what people see, hear, when they read your posts is their own story telling itself to them.

The interactive adventure of self-discovery flows both ways!

I shared the quote above with a blogger the other day. This blogger is going through a bit of a blogging life crisis, which made her want to delete her blog.

Most bloggers consider deleting their blogs at some point in their relationship with their blog.

Sometimes you outgrow your blog. Sometimes your blog has become a trap and the only way out is to kill it. Sometimes it’s because you have nothing left to say, you feel like you’ve said it all, and you’re fed up of writing “I’m sorry I haven’t posted anything in a while” posts.

This blog is my third blog – it’s lasted longer than the other two because of reasons I’ve shared in other posts about blogging. Every now and then I get a strong urge to wipe it out – it’s used to me feeling like that now, and just rolls its eyes at me and goes uh-huh, you gotta do what you gotta do.

This particular blogger is having their blogging life crisis due to a challenge I luckily haven’t had to face… with my blog.

In my life from the moment that I was able to tell stories to others with words, that challenge was a major part of my experience, and only through blogging have I learned that it’s okay to tell my story now.

This is one of my most popular posts which tells part of my story about dealing with that kind of a challenge – Being A Child of Narcissists – Breaking the Silence – its popularity is due to it being a life story which is not just mine.

All she did was share her story.

But the fabric of our stories is a tapestry which is interwoven with the stories of others.

People in her RL find out about it and chose to take her story personally and not like it. Not like it so much that they’re pressuring her to delete her story for the sake of their story about what she’s written.

In my opinion she hasn’t written anything bad about others. And, as I said to her, though I’ve only been following her blog and reading her posts for a short while – all of her posts seemed to me to be about her and not about others.

This is Kalliope’s kingdom – Modern Mystic Mother – if you’d like to read her story.

Other people write themselves into our stories about ourselves. Just as we write ourselves into the stories of others about themselves. And we all rather like a bit of drama to liven up our every day lives.

Even when I write about others, I know I’m writing about myself, writing about my side of the story, and chances are if they were the ones writing the story, they’d have a very different side of the story.

Even the simplest shared stories can be vastly different in how we experience and perceive them.

A puddle can look like an ocean to one person, someone else might not see anything there at all for they are looking up, another person might not see the water but a hole in the ground, and a child might see the entrance to a magic wonderland.

The above quote is the one I used as the featured image for this post. I wasn’t looking for that quote when I happened upon it, I was looking for the one by Anne Lamott, but I was being lazy and only put the words – Tell your story – into the search bar.

That laziness shaped the flow of this post today.

And that particular quote synchronised with a thought I had last night and which reminded me of itself this morning when I awoke.

Years ago, when I moved from interest to interest in search of something which would give me purpose, a reason for continuing to live a life which felt as though it only offered suffering…

I stumbled clumsily into Buddhism, not as a religion to join and follow because I didn’t do that sort of thing. I was a practicing loner who knew that they did not belong anywhere, nor did they fit in with any group.

I read The Tibetan Book of the Dead, and other books on the subject (including one book which stressed that Buddha himself saw his philosophy as just him telling his story, and he did not want it to be turned into a religion).

In the jumble of words, imagery and information I was pouring into my mind causing, I latched onto the idea that my purpose in life should be to figure out how to avoid reincarnating.

I’ve always been weird and crazy – you’ll either get it or you won’t, don’t worry if you don’t it’s probably a good sign. I don’t always get it either… that’s part of the fun!

Anyway, in the thought I had last night and this morning… I think I’ve finally figured out how to do it. Whether I’ll actually be able to do it is something I’ll just have to wait and see or not see.

The thought is this – when we tell our story, and all the stories which are a part of our story, we release ourselves from the hold which the story has on us. The story holds onto to us because it has chosen us as its storyteller, but once we’ve shared what it needed and wanted us to share, it lets us go.

If I tell all of my stories…

Thank you for listening to my story with your eyes…

or was it your story you were reading?

22 thoughts on “Reasons for Telling Your Story

Add yours

    1. Thank you, Sadje πŸ™‚

      Your post was interesting to read. It revealed a lot about you and your personal journey thus far in the blogosphere. You’re at that point which bloggers reach when you realise just how many moving parts there are to the experience, and just how many ways to go there are with your blogging self. It’ll be intriguing to see which way you choose to go and what you discover along the way. Thank you for sharing.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks. Your analysis is almost that of a psychological nature, or a look in the future. I appreciate your feedback. I loved reading your views on blogging in your post! Happy holidays

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  1. Like you, I cut down alot of my story as well. Most of the time it’s because I can’t find the right words to describe a time or moment in my history (I attempted to write a bio years ago and became frustrated with myself and killed the project). I know how it happened, how I felt when it happened but sometimes there’s no words to use for it; you just had to been there. So I bring up tidbits in comments or if I write a life post (which I haven’t in awhile) then a little more of me is revealed to the world. Me in small doses.

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    1. That’s a great way of doing it, in small doses πŸ™‚

      Everything you post is a bio of sorts and tells your personal story. The things which catch your eye, which interest you, what you love, what annoys, what you notice, what you share, they’re all pieces of your beautiful tapestry of self.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for your interesting thoughts to think about for this upcoming year! I’ve been reading for inspiration as I write and come out with a general layout for the new season. I’m new to blogging, and these past few months have been a whirlwind and taught me a few things! I have a lot of ideas that I wanted to explore more about in my journals…

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    1. Thank you, Sa πŸ™‚

      Ah! You’re in the honeymoon phase of blogging, being swept off your feet, falling in love, dancing with words πŸ˜€ it’s a great time! Experimenting is one of the wonderful things about blogging, you can try out all your ideas and see what they look like, where they lead, what they become. It’s a brilliant creative outlet and inlet.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Exactly, Ursula! I know that eventually it’s going to wear off though. I didn’t think I was going to stick with this medium for so long because I never stuck with the other social media outlets long either. I wonder if it’s going to get to a point where it will feel like work or maybe like an old married couple, when I’ll get cranky with it and kill off a bunch of projects. So this post was very informative and showed me a glimpse of what it may look like down the road.

        When I first started, I thought about sharing my whole story, yet I like this idea of exploring parts of me in small doses! As of now, I do enjoy it very much.

        Anyway, merry Christmas! πŸ™‚ ❀

        Like

        1. Haha! Yes, I’m kind of in the old married couple phase of blogging now with this blog, I recently passed over the cranky and blogicidal hump, it’s really easy going now, I feel like my blog understands me and accepts me, and I can just do whatever and it’s fun. I did kill off two previous blogs because the relationships had come to an end. You just have to go with it and see where it takes you. You’ve got a great energy, talent and spirit, whatever you decide to do those will go with you and fuel your life with inspiration πŸ™‚

          Merry Christmas! Have a good one and best wishes ❀

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Interesting post, and I love your quotes.
    I’ve been going five years and my writing has changed significantly in that time. I enjoy it, the interaction, the posts I read and comments I receive. I’m still learning, will always be learning. I’ve been forever on a learning curve of some description.
    Compliments of the season to you.

    Like

    1. Thank you, Pensitivity πŸ™‚ Seasons greetings to you too!

      That’s very true, life is a perpetual learning curve πŸ˜€ Blogging is a great way to get some perspective on life, and to share what we’ve learned with others, what we’re still learning, and glean some lovely wisdom from what others have learned.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I am moved that you mentioned me in your post. I truly am. Well.. welcome to a new day, a new chapter has unfolded. It is christmas eve, although the sun has not yet risen. what a fucking day… week… month… a whole fucking year.
    it has come to a head where my husband now has to deal with the nuclear fallout of my proclivity for over (nuclear) reactions. for my loud mouth ways has drawn the attention of legit hackers. i have screenshots and i have deniers. and really all i have is my own words and actions because most people on the internet are full of their own shit.
    too bad i’m a land dwelling creature for i could really use a fishtail right about now to swim under the sea, down where it’s better and wetter.

    Like

    1. I did see one of your posts where you mentioned being hacked, I think you said it was by someone to whom you’d given Admin access. If you know who they are and you can bring yourself to do it, you should have a calm conversation with them where you let them tell you directly what it is they’re trying to say to you through their hacking and other indirect communication behaviour.

      So much chaos is caused by people feeling frustrated because they feel unheard and they want you to listen to what they have to say, they want you to hear how they’re feeling, how they’re reacting to their perception of what you’re doing. It’s a circle. Your nuclear reaction is your reaction to what they’re doing to you – what they’re doing to you is caused by their reaction to what they think you’re doing to them.

      They’re making you upset because they’re upset. The more distressing what they’re doing to you is tells you how distressed they are.

      If you do something to them because they’ve upset you due to them being upset because of something you did which they’ve taken personally then they’ll get more upset and do something to you which will make you more upset and… and it’s going to keep going around in an ever increasing circle of upset, anger, frustration.

      Split your nuclear reaction in half and see half of it as belonging to them – they’re feeling like you’re feeling which is why they’re doing what they’re doing. They want you to feel their pain. So feel the pain and understand what it’s saying. Or the chain reaction will just keep going. Unless you let them tell you what they really want to tell you, and you listen, understand – defuse the situation.

      You’re the one with the real power in this situation because you’re the target.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I was listening. Great advice for bloggers btw, and you have found the secret to blogging, if such exists. Fifteen years tells its own tale. I’m heading into twelve myself, and find that there’s always lessons to learn, no matter the amount of time one has put into it. Perhaps the greatest of those is learning what ‘your’ voice IS and then sticking to it. People can tell, and mostly aren’t too impressed, with somebody who mouths (as it were) the popular and fleeting. Well I’m not impressed with that any way. I AM impressed with those I follow (for the most part). Now and then we all run into quick sand, where something goes wrong, and then something else and pretty soon everything is wrong. I haven’t seen YOU have that problem, so again my feeling that you’re a ‘true’ blogger is justified. πŸ™‚

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    1. Thank you, Melanie πŸ™‚

      Gosh I hadn’t realised you’d been blogging for that long, that’s very impressive. I haven’t been blogging for 15 years, that amount of time is from the Robert Benchley quote. It’s more like 7 years, give or take. My brain doesn’t do timekeeping.

      One of the things I love about blogging is the fact that there’s always something new to learn about yourself, about others, about life. You’re totally right, finding your voice is an important part of the experience, particularly if you want blogging longevity. Blogging helped me to find my voice both online and offline. I was always so hesitant to actually talk with people and now I’m a blabbermouth – never thought I’d see the day when I’d enjoy talking πŸ˜‰

      I agree, you can usually tell when someone is speaking with their own voice. There’s a flow to it, a freely moving stream of self-expression which reacts naturally, enjoys itself, embraces the experience of sharing themselves as they are. There’s a rawness and realness to it which is refreshing.

      If they’re withholding their real voice, there’s a stiffness to their expression, they’re thinking too much before speaking, editing themselves, being too careful about what they say and how they react, trying to create a certain impression, trying to control how others perceive them, trying to be someone they are not.

      All voices are interesting, but the ones which are wild and free are more fun to listen to, partly because they encourage our real voice to come out and play too πŸ˜€

      Like

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