So, I haven’t really been fully myself around here.
I started this blog almost three years ago. And, I must say, blogging has changed my life. Yes, perhaps this is laughable as the content of my little blog is hardly content at all. But in conjunction with the writing I have done “offscreen” [as a result of the attempt to blog] and the entry into a culture of progressive and self-starting people, I feel I have gone through a discovery process both on a personal level and a career level, and for me those are both merged anyway.
I think everyone should blog. Journaling is great. It’s wonderful. But when you put yourself out there and share those journal-like feelings with others and connect, then things start happening. Questions surface. I have been faced with so many questions during these last three years of writing and wondering when to share or what to share or how it sounds or why I even want to share or what the fuck I am even doing or how it conflicts with this part of me or that part of me or what people will think. Suddenly, you start to see who you are and who you want to be and how you want to improve, and isn’t that what we are all trying to do here? I am always trying to be my best version, and blogging has allowed me to see what that best version looks like.
What I have also learned is that there are some discrepancies between the current version of me and the better version of me, as there naturally always will be. The next better version of me doesn’t care so much what other people think of my blog and starts taking herself more seriously.
I have been censoring myself. Not sharing certain thoughts or opinions or stories because I’m afraid they might be misunderstood or am worried about sounding a certain way or being taken the wrong way. And then I never hit publish. There my work sits. Sitting in a pool of fear, the same one each of my other articles are also marinating in and the concoction becomes a dark, deep, cold and lonely sea.
Online, Journeyfoot may not feel like much, but offline, it has been the development of who I am, what I am drawn to and what my “art” is, in the Godin sense of the word. I suppose that’s what I have been doing the last few years: figuring out who I am, what I am good at and getting comfortable putting it out there.
I happen to make a living in branding and marketing. I know how to do it. I get paid to do it. And yet I don’t do it for my own brand. I guess it’s taken me this long to figure out what my brand is.
Kathleen Shannon from Braid Creative mentioned in this podcast she co-hosts something about your brand being the exterior shell that encompasses everything underneath. We want the inside to match the shell. Otherwise we feel fake. Phony. Not real.
So, I’m here confessing that I haven’t been real here. Yes I put my heart out there and have been vulnerable and everything I have written here is true and real. I’m always after truth. But I have been holding back so much of my truth because of fear of what people will think of me. And that is just, well … dumb. We know all the reasons it is dumb, yet we still get stuck on that one.
I am always thinking and analyzing and looking at every little route and dissecting and breaking down to what some might say is a crazy level. So what. How about I just embrace that, and admit to that, instead of censoring myself because I am afraid that I might come across as neurotic and intense and sometimes random. I AM those things. And I wouldn’t change them, because I know our blessings are our curses and what makes me difficult and complex also makes me good at what I do.
I can be a hypocrite and it’s okay because, as my friend Cassandra so sweetly says, “everyone is.”
I can admit to indulging in long hot showers and not have to feel so damn guilty as though I am an environmentalism fraud preaching clean water but personally using too much of it.
Who cares if people pigeon-hole me as something or anything? If someone is pigeon-holing, I probably wouldn’t feel too good hanging around them anyway.
And since we’re confessing, so long as I have a couple wet wipes for the nether region, I truly enjoy not showering during a long trek in the woods or on the road because somehow it adds to the adventure, and I very much admire those that can hold out and sit in their own stench. It’s like we share a dirty secret. Or something.
Oh, and I’m afraid people don’t hear the humor in my voice. Don’t get it. Hear it a different way than I intended so then peg me all wrong. So misunderstood. But fuck it, who cares.
Through blogging, I’ve been learning how I present myself to the world and whether or not it matches with what I really am and what parts I am scared of showing and why. Journeyfoot is my personal brand and it hasn’t been fully colored in. I am holding the important stuff back. I’m not giving what I know I need to give. The heart of me. I am waiting for perfection that never comes, nor will ever come, and I am reminded with each new blog post that stacks up as a draft.
Blogging takes you on a journey. And it is only now, almost three years later, that I am realizing what I’m doing right and what I’m doing wrong and where I want to take this here Journeyfoot. For starters, I need to get comfortable hitting Publish without editing and fine tuning and dissecting and doubting. I am ready to make some changes and take some new steps.
The first step is to literally just hit publish right now, and then know that I have to follow through with this. [oh shit]
The second step is to go write about what is stirring all of this and how things are going to change, which I will then post. If you are interested, stay tuned. If not, thanks for listening.
To my fellow bloggers: Has blogging changed your life? If so, how?
And to those thinking about starting a blog: What’s holding you back?