You may have noticed lately there has been a lack of new content on here. Sure I’ve published those obligatory end of year post and rounded my month up but I’m still yet to blog about being in Rio de Janeiro or my trip to Santiago Chile. I just end up sitting down at the computer saying I’ll write and instead staring at Twitter, Pinterest or Facebook and wonder what it is I should be writing about. My inspiration wavered a few months ago when I took on more than I could handle. I realised I had to prioritise what I needed/had to do and for the first time since I started, blogging fell to the bottom of the pile. I’d bash away at my laptop frantically trying to make a post for those days I’d always published something but the passion I’d once felt wasn’t there. Even I wasn’t proud of what I was publishing but I wasn’t ready to take a break and stop at that point. I was more comfortable doing what I had always done rather than knowing it was time to step back.
I scheduled and created content up until my trip to Rio, thinking once I landed here I would have so much time on my hands, I’d be seeing somewhere new and inspiration would hit me. But, it didn’t and honestly for the first time I was okay with that. I let days go by without looking at my blog, thinking about my blog, worrying that I hadn’t written something new. Slowly I became okay with that. I went out in Rio without my camera, without looking for a blog in everything I did. I spent more time offline that online, I was just in the moment, taking it in and enjoying it. I wasn’t frantic with needing to share every detail of my trip on here but I figured maybe that’s because I knew I’d be back here twice more yet. However, then I went to Santiago in Chile and you know what the same thing happened. I wasn’t immediately thinking of how to put this into a blog, I ate food and drank drinks without taking photos. I stood and just took in the view, listen to the sounds, the language, the way the road signs looked. I was there in the moment without taking pictures and without thinking up the words in my head and that was okay. I didn’t mind not sharing every moment with the rest of the world like I should for my brand, to keep people engaged with my blog. I threw out the blogging rule book and explored and went to bed and explored the next day. I mostly stayed offline during that trip.
And you know what, the blogging world didn’t end, my blog didn’t lose it’s traffic because of it and it was good for me.
So I think the problem with blogging is that everyone wants to be successful and therefore you start following the rules of said successful people. You do things because it is what you need to do to build a brand, to drive traffic. You blog about only the things that matter for your ‘niche’ and you toss aside ideas of posts that aren’t related to travel. You write to be informative, to give people the information they are looking for. You drown your words in pretty pictures that are too perfect even you can’t relate to them. You do this in hope that the image will stand out among the rest on social media and drive more traffic to your site. You do all of this to make your blog the best, the most successful and somewhere along the line you realised you’ve stopped blogging for yourself.
When I started this blog I was preparing to take a gap year and travel/work abroad for an entire year. I was doing things every day which produced fresh content and learning from daily mistakes in order to give you guys the best advice. However, these days I don’t travel full time, I don’t live abroad full time and although I take a lot more holidays than your average person, I don’t backpack in the same way I use to. Sure I travel on a budget but I also spend three quarters of the year studying for a full time degree and being stuck in London. The changes to my life since starting this blog make it impossible for The Little Backpacker to be exactly the same as when I started it and I need to let that be okay. I want to write about everyday things I feel inspired to write about.
Goals for Blogging in 2016
This blog might be called The Little Backpacker and focus on travel but sometimes I might post about other things to. I’ll write what is relevant to me and my life, maybe about books or food or photography or marathon training or teaching. I’ll be more personal, show more of who I am and bring you not just The Little Backpacker brand but the person behind it all. This is my blog and there is no need to only blog about my niche just because it is in the title of my blog. A blog is each persons personal space online and they should be able to write whatever they want, and that is exactly what I plan to do for 2016.
I’d also love to hear what you guys want me to do… What do you want to be reading on The Little Backpacker this year? What posts do you find most helpful? What mosts do you like reading the most? Should I create more vlogs? Work harder on social media? Let me know in the comments and thank you in advance because any comments will be helpful.