What if I were blogging for all the wrong reasons?
As painful as it is to admit, here is the truth: I crave for attention on social media.
I have let myself believe that owning a blog was a way for me to share my work. In fact, writing has been one of my dearest habits for a long time, therefore sharing my pieces with other people on the web has made me evolve even more as a person and as a ‘writer’. Besides, anyone willing to make a breakthrough in journalism has been provided with the same (not so old) piece of advice: ‘Start a blog!’. ‘Find your voice’ they say, ‘It will give you exposure and recognition’.
Genuine millennial and budding journalist, I embarked on this new path, believing it to be a natural move. A few posts and some followers later, here I am.
Stuck in a blogging rut for weeks, I have been thinking of a hundred different subjects to write about and yet I have nothing to say about any of them. I have nothing to say at all. So I take some rest and try not to think about anything, leave my mind alone and inspiration will come as it always does, which is to say when the button named ‘Blogging Ideas’ in my mind is off. And days have passed, and still nothing comes to my mind. There’s always those petty ideas, but no, there is nothing I genuinely want to write about. Coming to a dead end, I have started wondering what were the purposes of my sharing of my latest blog posts.
Actually, I have observed that it’s been pretty much a year ever since I’ve stopped writing on a daily basis about issues that mattered to me in a way that would lingeringly make me climb up the stairs toward a career in journalism. I have shared, ever since, deeply personal pieces of mine. But, what were the reasons of this shift?
In the first place, it was definitely a relief for me to write about such things. Writing down what is worrying and terrifying certainly clears the head. Moreover, sharing it with people who could relate at some point was somehow an utter comfort. And the more I kept on writing, the more I ended up posting it online.
The whole situation evolved when, scrolling through social networks, I found myself craving for a topic to write about. I was literally obsessed with the idea of publishing a blog post at this point. I could have written a thousand words about my ongoing day or my ever-lasting questioning but I did not actually need to write, I merely needed to post something, anything, online. I wanted people to read ‘a piece of mine’. I wanted my words to be read. I wanted my voice to be heard. I was desperately seeking attention.
Social media has added an all new perspective to loneliness. We crave for likes and retweets, hoping that people will show kindness through a click, as if acts of genuine kindness were reduced to this. We wish for people we know to be more present online than in real life, if they’re not fully part of our life, or at least not as much as we’d like. We dream of virtual love, virtual friends if we can’t get the real ones. We aspire to virtual recognition and success (i.e. likes and comments) because we can’t have it in real life.
So is it just a blogging crisis? Isn’t it an existential crisis?
Perhaps, this blog’s turning point was when I stopped thinking in terms of will and started considering it solely as a way to be seen, to be heard, and to be recognized. Perhaps the ‘I’ questions appeared to be too prominent on this platform, after all isn’t this long post too self-absorbed? Hasn’t it all become an unwholesome doing, a giant mess?