Monday, February 2, 2015

Avoiding Blog Burnout


Blogging is good because: 


  • You meet great people.  
  • It can sharpen writing skills.
  • It's an opportunity to give back. 
  • It acts as a forum to interact with other writers.
  • It provides exposure for our writing and other pursuits.

My December 15 post discussed why we blog, and it was unanimous - the perks, particularly the people, are great. 

A good blog doesn't just happen though. Anyone who says blogging is a breeze probably hasn't been at it very long.   

Writing posts, visiting blogs, maintaining the site, related social media - it all takes time. Add blogging to other writing, work, and life's commitments, and our plate becomes very full.

After a while, blogging can bog you down.


How can we avoid burnout? 

  • Take regular breaks. Stepping away frees time for other activities. This change of pace can offer breathing room and inspiration.
  • Share guest posts. A guest post offers a reprieve for the host and a bit of variety for the readers. It also helps promote other writers.
  • Consider posting less frequently. Blogging consumes regular writing time (as in, you don't get to other projects). 
  
Stepping back to gain perspective can help restore and maintain balance. This is always a good thing.  


Visiting a Friend 

The gracious and lovely author Becky Lewellen Povich is hosting me on her blog. If you have a moment, please stop by and see us


Taking My Own Advice

Speaking of balance, I am taking a break to catch up on projects. I'm also getting ready for my 6th Blogoversary celebration in March. The party will include a few special guests and giveaways. I'll be back from break on February 16. 


Do you take blog breaks? How do you avoid burnout in any area of your life?


Happy writing,

Karen 


Photo credit: Stock Exchange

33 comments :

  1. I do take breaks--especially when I feel I am done with blogging and then I can come back feeling refreshed! Enjoy yours!

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is a fantastic post. So agree on the pros of blogging and how not to get overwhelmed about it. Planning to discuss all of this when I do a presentation on successful blogging for a SCBWI meet up.

    ReplyDelete
  3. What a super post. LOVE it. Enjoy the break, amigo. I need to blog more regularly. I just have so many hospital visits with Christopher. Going to visit you. Hug, hug, hug.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I so agree with what you've posted today. I almost stopped doing anything online and with my writing a few months ago, then I took a break. It changed how I felt and I intend to make it a regular part of my life. Staring into space, traveling, just taking the time to do something completely different for a while works magic.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Karen: Yes, we have to take breaks. I try to practice the Cyber-Sabbath. I TRY not to get online on Sundays. I also try to keep off of posting blogs or anything cyber when our son is home. That could be more often, starting this spring, as he is moving back to Indiana. I believe I will be taking more breaks if I should get to the place where I am writing more for submission.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Good idea, quietspirit above. I never considered it a Cyber-Sabbath, but that's a great name. I also try to limit my online time on the weekend when I can so that I can spend time with my five children and husband.

    Karen, what a wonderful post. You are correct. Everyone needs a break from their jobs/careers once in a while. I'll join your blog. Thanks for sharing the insight. http://victoriamarielees.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. Enjoy your blog break! I take 2-3 short breaks each year, and agree that breaks help getting burned out. I think it is important to step back and reflect periodically to see if we need to make any changes and to see how things are going. :)
    ~Jess

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hi Karen! Happy Anniversary, and have a restful break too! I did cut back my blogging. I started out with three posts a week, but now am at two. It's so much better. I have not had guest bloggers to my site, that is something to consider.
    Breaks are so necessary. I also try to have a few posts 'in the can' so I can concentrate on other things. You know...like life!
    Off you go! Enjoy!
    Ceil

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi Karen,

    Nice interview; I tried to leave a comment, but had difficulty. Maybe a computer glitch? :-) Much continued success!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Terri,
    Can't tell you how many times I've felt about "done" with blogging. Not that I hate it, or anything, it just gets to be that one more thing you need to do. But I cannot step away completely from the people, you know? You and all my other blogging friends are absolutely great. :)

    Natalie,
    Thank you! I was concerned it was too basic, but it seems to speak to a lot of people. And I know I need to review these principles often for sanity's sake. lol :)

    Robyn,
    Thanks, amigo :) I think you do a great job with all you have going on. Your plate is really full! Don't know how you balance it all. You inspire me. xo

    Lee,
    You know, I don't want anyone to have a hard time with the experience, but it sure is nice to know that others struggle with this and need a break too. Appreciate your support. :)

    Ceclia,
    I think that is an excellent idea. I keep it light on Sundays as well, and often Saturdays too. We do need time and space to do other things. Enjoy the time with your son! :)

    Victoria,
    It's nice to meet you! Thanks for stopping by, following, and commenting. I agree, Cecelia's idea is an excellent one. Will hop over to your blog soon! )

    Jess,
    Thanks a bunch! You are right, stepping back is so important for our sanity and productivity. I know I get grouchy if I don't get a break now and then. lol :)

    Ceil,
    Thank you! Hard to believe I've been blogging that long, you know? I am like you; I like to have a few posts on hand While I can't always manage it, it does offer relief knowing things are taken care of.

    Jen,
    Thanks for hopping over to the interview! I appreciate your effort and support! :)

    Happy writing,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  11. Good tips. I took a break over Christmas and now just post once a week so I don't overdo it.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Kelly,
    So glad you liked it! Appreciate your thoughts. :)

    Alex,
    It really does get to be a lot, doesn't it? Glad you found a good balance. :)

    Happy writing,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  13. I definitely do get burned out. I've taken a week off, especially during holiday time or busy times. Last week I posted twice instead of three times because I had too many things going on. It's necessary.

    Have a wonderful blog break.

    ReplyDelete
  14. When I began blogging in 2012 I posted every day. Then I relaxed and went to three times a week. Whew! i think my readers were fine with that.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Blogging DOES take time, no doubt about it, but the benefits outweigh the downside. The one thing I did was quit posting three times a week. I post every Wednesday like clockwork, and I may go back to including Mon and Fri, but not with a regular post---a Pawsitive Pondering (animal pic with caption) because they're fun to make and won't require reading time or comments from my blog followers, but will offer a quick smile and lift to anyone who checks it out. I applaud those bloggers who post 4-5 times a week with great content. I don't know how they do it, though.

    ReplyDelete
  16. My comment didn't stick this morning. Good thing I came back and checked. Can't remember what I wrote. Probably just thanking you for a terrific list. Honestly, it's encouraging to know that we're not alone in our burnout. A while back I started blogging less frequently, but trying for more important content. I'm noticing that many other bloggers are doing the same. Makes for a kinder blogsphere for us all.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Medeia,
    It is necessary, and I think we all need to figure out what's best for our schedules. Thanks a bunch!

    Susan,
    We sure are! You could post once a month and I would come and see you. :) Much of it has to do with what the blogger has to say.

    Lisa,
    I used to post twice a week. Now I don't know how I did that! lol Once a week even gets to be a little much sometimes. So we find the right balance for each of us, right? :)

    Joylene,
    Thank you! Glad it resonated with you. I never wanted to admit it was getting to be too much until a writer friend and I got to discussing it. She feels the same way. I guess I hated to say anything because the people are so great, and to say blogging is too much sometimes sounds like you don't care for the people, you know? But I love the people. A kinder blogosphere, yes, all for that! :)

    Happy writing,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  18. I took a very long break and just re-establishing now and checking into my heart often to make sure my time is being used wisely toward where God wants to take me with my writing. I always enjoy meeting with you here!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Thanks for stopping by Critter Alley, Karen!

    In the early days, I wrote a blog post daily, Monday through Friday. After a year or so this changed to posting 3 times a week. Now I typically post only about once a week. Finally I decided it wasn't urgent for me to post more frequently, so why add another area of stress to my life? Blogging should be enjoyable, not a burden.

    Pat
    Critter Alley

    ReplyDelete
  20. Hi Karen -

    Once published, I had to cut back from three posts to two posts per week. I also try to have at least three to four weeks of posts scheduled. If life hits, I don't have to worry about writing a post. It's a great stress reliever.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Lynn,
    I think that can be a good move - a long break - to reassess and focus. You are right; you need to be where God directs. Thanks for your kind words. I enjoy my visits to you blog too! :)

    Pat,
    Sorry I didn't get over there sooner. I thought I'd already left a comment. See, I do need this break! LOL You hit the nail on the head; it should be enjoyable, not a chore. :)

    Susan,
    So glad you've found a good balance. I am aiming to get more posts scheduled ahead of time too. :)

    Happy writing,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  22. I LOVE blog breaks and am actually getting ready to go on one at the end of the month. With the baby due in March, I figured I'd better get myself focused on the prep. (If not sooner.) So much to do!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Blogging is definitely not easy, at all! I think it's very important to take a blogging break now and then. I take 3-4 a year :)

    ReplyDelete
  24. I started taking every 4th month off. Maybe not the best for SEO and other stuff, but it helps me.

    ReplyDelete
  25. My breaks aren't planned but come naturally. Shows the need is there. Enjoy the space you have allowed yourself.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Crystal,
    I love them too, and can get a lot done if I set my mind to it. And sometimes I fritter them away...:) Wishing you all the best with the new little one!

    Keith,
    I agree. I take at least that many. It really helps keep a balance. :)

    Holly,
    That's a good idea. Maybe I'll give that a try, rather than waiting till I am super swamped. Thanks for the tip! :)

    Anita,
    I think you are right. :) We need down time, don't we? Thanks so much. :)

    Happy writing,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  27. I cut back to posting and visiting/commenting just once a week. I know I miss a lot of good posts that way but it keeps the process from becoming overwhelming.

    ReplyDelete
  28. LD,
    I know, I am down to one a week as well. Feel like I am missing some good posts too, but just can't keep up with everything. My husband will disown me if I try! LOL
    Happy writing,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  29. Thanks, Karen! Agreed--breaks are great as long as we're productive while away. *fingers crossed*

    ReplyDelete
  30. Crystal,
    Yes, that is the key. Not setting any records here, but am getting a few things done. A break is a good thing!
    Blessings,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  31. Would love to take a break, I'm near burnout!

    ReplyDelete
  32. Nas,
    Hope you get a break soon! They really do help recharge and inspire.
    Happy weekend,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your input. Have a blessed day!