Sunday 6 July 2014

All Hail The Silent Appreciators

I think I speak for a lot of bloggers, especially newer ones, when I say that sometimes blogging just feels like talking to a brick wall.

As any kind of creator, there is literally nothing worse than spending HOURS painstakingly crafting, photographing, editing and formatting content, only for it to be simply lost among the flurry, all your hard work seemingly ignored and unacknowledged, and you're left crestfallen as you watch all your effort go to waste.

It pretty much just super sucks.

As I mentioned in a recent post, I recently felt as thought my blog was growing and dying at a simultaneous pace - I was getting more hits than I ever had done, but less interaction, feedback and comments than way back when I'd just started.

I couldn't work out what I was doing wrong, and it made me seriously begin to question what I was doing and why I was doing it, and I got caught in a vicious cycle of doubt and insecurity.

But after some reassurance about the ups and downs of blogging from some top bloggers and the balance seemingly restoring itself, I could breathe a sigh of relief as I found myself settling back on track and enjoying blogging again.

But it wasn't until I saw a recent tweet about one of my posts, that I realised a crucial thing which I'd been completely overlooking by being so caught up in the convoluted logistics of followers, likes and feedback.

In my usual awkward way of being unbelievably grateful but not really being able to express it via tweet (for someone who's supposedly good with words, I can be really not good with words) I received a response which made me think about something I so ignorantly hadn't even really considered before.

This notion was then solidified when later that evening I received an absolutely beautiful email from a girl whose name I'd never seen before.

How was that possible? I knew all the familiar names that popped up in my comments or on Twitter, so where had this girl come from?

She'd hit the nail on the head.


Silent Appreciators.

How many times had I stumbled across an incredible blog, been blown away by the content and hastily saved it to my favourites bar, eagerly checking back for new posts?

All the time.

How many times had I actually commented, emailed or tweeted to let that person know how much I loved what they were doing?

*sitcom studio audience 'ohhhhhh' sound*

Hardly ever.

Not because I don't want to, but I realised because, I myself am a silent appreciator, a sit-back-and-really-think-about-what-I've-just-read-er.

And as far as I know, these people who I so ardently look up to and appreciate might be on their last tether of feeling as though no-one cared about what they do, perhaps on the brink of giving it up. These people might be sat there feeling tired of putting so much into creating their space, only to be ignored and unacknowledged, oblivious to I, the adoring reader still poring over their posts.

There are a whole host of bloggers I can think of off the top of my head that I would genuinely be crushed if they decided to shut down their blog, yet I don't really do anything to show my support for them.

For one thing, that's going to change. My new blogging resolution is to be a hell of a lot more vocal and supportive of things which I think are brilliant. A blogger which I have serious respect admiration for is Zoe LDN, who always takes the time to support and celebrate fellow bloggers on Twitter which I massively respect.

But I think the most important thing here is to understand that just because your blog is not getting any comments or feedback, it doesn't mean you aren't making a difference. It doesn't mean that there's not someone out there who absolutely loves what you do, and silently checks back everyday to see what you're up to.

Just because you only have 50 followers, it doesn't mean than you don't have a hundred other people who religiously follow your blog, without the preface of a bloglovin' account or Twitter handle.

Even if you get just one hit a day, that single person might be totally in awe of your little world, and would be gutted if you ever gave up hope with it.

You just never know, and I think that's a pretty optimistic kind of ignorance, a far sight better than just assuming your efforts were wasted.

And I'm a firm believer that love is innately empathetic, and if you truly love what you do and it shines through with what you create, then it's not hard for other people to fall in love with your passion too. There's a bunch of blogs I follow of which aren't really my taste in clothes, music, style or whatever, but the people behind them are so curiously fascinating and exciting I find myself hooked.

All in all, I just urge you to have faith in yourself.

Ahhh I know I always make out as if I'm some all knowing guru telling everyone what to do, and probably a bit hypocritical 'cause I'm just stumbling about through life too, but.... I don't know. Maybe I'm just the internet version of this girl:

I just think that if you really believe that what you're creating is great, then I can sure as hell bet there are a load of other people out there who think that too, whether they are vocal about it or not.

The internet is known for being so sinister because you don't always know who's looking at your stuff, but you know, I think that can be a little bit wonderful too.