Blogging Tips for the Neurotic

I realized lately, or rather, I decided to readily admit that I am obsessive. My mom and I are alike in so many ways and it becomes more apparent with every passing conversation. We had a good laugh this morning over how much we are like in our nonsense obsessions; the lists we make for ourselves that are unnecessary; the standards we arbitrarily set for ourselves that are high and completely pointless. There are times and places where this attention to detail and drive for perfection are useful, but more often than not, it is a hindrance, i.e. you actually do not need to feel pressed to watch every program you DVR. ha! Sorry mom, that was just too good.

I have my fair share of neurosis: a dollop of anxiety, a bit of obsession, a pinch of compulsion, and a handful of perfectionism. These are probably driving forces in my need for and love of yoga and meditation. I had “one of those days” this week where I doubted myself, felt I was doing it all wrong, wasting loads of time, and needed some fine tuning. I love blogging but had a moment of “I’m done; this is silly” but after sleeping on it, I realized I put unnecessary pressure on myself not only to write for my blog but more on reading blogs.  I am okay with accepting that I don’t have to keep up my schedule of posting Mondays, Wednesdays and Freestyle Fridays. Heaven forbid I miss a day! What would happen? Would the world stop turning? Would my just 301 followers (yes, I’m counting) give up on me entirely? Aren’t you all waiting with bated breath what I will say next? A bit dramatic, right? Sometimes I have to go high drama to give myself a good laugh and some perspective, i.e. “Chill the F out!”

neurotic blogging

The deal with blog reading is that I feel an obligation to read every single blog post of every single blog I love. When I started this whole thing, I had the ones I loved sent to my inbox. Then I found more great blogs and the posts piled up until I felt like I was drowning in all of the unread posts. But, after some much needed laughter about my craziness, I decided to stop all email notifications and delete everything out of my inbox. Poof! Gone! And “Awww“, it felt so good. I know some really awesome blog posts will go unread but I can live with that. Making those changes felt almost as good as deleting the Facebook app from my phone. *Although, it pained me a bit to turn off email notifications of my most beloved bloggers I am certain I can keep up through the Reader.

That’s the other thing, I never use the Reader, so I felt bad about all of the other blogs I follow not getting sent to my inbox that I was missing. Kinda ridiculous, right?

So, here are my blogging tips for the neurotic:

  • Obsess over things that justify being obsessed over, which comes down likely to a very short list if there is anything on it at all.
  • Blogging and reading blogs does not need to make you feel stressed; it is supposed to be pleasurable. Unless you’re making millions on your blog or reading other blogs, don’t stress it! I don’t receive any compensation from my blog but that is not my goal anyway.

neurotic blogging1

  • If you suffer from the sparkles of crazy like me, find ways to lessen your load. Delete unnecessary notifications.

Our world is almost too connected in a way that leaves us disconnected at the same time. This excessive need to “keep up” is likely winding people up. It is no wonder “anxiety” is such an epidemic these days. It seems I read or hear more and more from people who suffer either regularly or on and off from anxiety. Has it always been this way I wonder?

I am learning, albeit slowly, that finding ways to disconnect will allow us to actually connect better to others and more importantly, ourselves.

*Truth be told, I went back and changed a handful of my loyal blogger friends back to my inbox. They are just too special. But I still made progress! And I am loving the Reader and all of the blogs I have been missing all this time.

40 thoughts on “Blogging Tips for the Neurotic

  1. I turned all email notifications off and rely on my reader now to read blogs because it’s easier for me that way. I know I miss a lot of great posts but I memorize all my favorite blogger’s url so I simply go to their sites directly when I miss them. 😉

  2. I’ve really struggled with this as well, Kerry; especially since starting the new job. I feel immense guilt if I don’t read (and comment on) every post from every blogger with whom I’ve developed a relationship. I know that guilt is completely self-imposed. But still, I say to myself, “so what that you’re out of town on business, they have busy lives too, and yet they stop to read and comment on your crap!”. it’s a vicious cycle…

    I don’t ever do the subscribe by email thing because my inbox is crazy without blog post notifications — so I use the Reader religiously. <– Now that right there is funny, coming from non-religious me. 🙂

    Kerry – you are a great writer, but more importantly, a good person. If you don't visit ever post or comment every single time, no one will think any less of you. Or, let me rephrase; those who might don't deserve an ounce of your time.

  3. Uh, you took the words right out of my mouth. Especially describing how one minute you think this whole blogging thing is silly and the next morning you’ve changed your mind. I’m extremely Type-A obsessive and I actually deleted a blog I had last year because I started really getting overwhelmed with my inbox and feeling obligated. Not this time though! Great, great tips for others out there and a really nice reminder for me as well:)

  4. You and Mummy both need a time out. I don’t know how old you are, but you get one minute for every year of your life– every day.
    I give myself a time out every day. 35 minutes just for me. J plays, K naps, and I sit quietly and think about nothing. I highly recommend it.

    • Yeah, I’m all about that! But I have a hard time doing or thinking about nothing. I do, however, adore my son’s naptime because even if I work or write, it is still rejuvenating. I need to prob either exercise or stare at a wall during that time too. 🙂

  5. Again, I totally feel you! I get very caught up in the “making it” as a blogger and after nearly 6 years I think I need to realize that isn’t going to happen. I sometimes get very jealous of other bloggers and stop reading for awhile. I turned off all my email notifications awhile ago because it was making me nuts. In case I miss something in the reader, I check my most favorite blogs at least once a week just in case.

  6. I’m all about the Reader! The email notifications freak me out. I average around 100 work emails a day in my work email inbox. My ‘me’ email inbox needs to slim down. As does my arse. 😉

    • Ha! Mine too. I’ve got to stop reading/writing during my son’s nap and get my booty on the treadmill! It’s almost bathingsuit season down here and I am NOT ready. The damn tagalongs and Samoa cookies are to blame!

  7. Blogging should be enjoyable – please don’t ever feel guilty about not visiting or posting! I’m really sporadic – I’ll read loads when I have time, then I won’t read for a fortnight. I tend to check back on the blogs I really love. I love reading your posts and would rather you posted, than read 😉
    There’s a healthy dollop of list-making, obsession and anxiety over here too. And I DO stress about not watching everything I’ve recorded. CRAZY. I know. But people like us make the world a tidier place 😉
    Keep on writing XXX

    • I agree! Yay for anxiety and OCD! Kidding, I jest yet know that there are people that struggle with these serious afflictions. But it is so important to recognize when it’s time to reign it in. Thank you for the sweet words too. I love your posts too…yours was one that had to get switched back to the inbox 😉

      • Aw shucks 🙂 I am honoured you’d consider my (often crazy) ramblings worth a proper read. You’ve made my evening 🙂 X

  8. Wise words! I just got through “unfollowing” a few blogs that I just couldn’t keep up with; there’s just so much out there. I can’t read it all and still have time to… you know, read!

  9. I got away from email notifications many months ago and only check my reader (which I love lets us add blogs that aren’t even on WP!) It makes life much easier. 😀

  10. I remember the moment that I realized it was okay if I didn’t read every single blog post. Yes, there will be times I will miss one of yours, but I have to be okay with that! 🙂 I try not too, but I want to be out there living life and not just reading about everyone else’s! And, if that means that sometimes I miss a post, then that is okay!

    Having said that, I dedicated a few hours tonight to catch up on my blog reading! 🙂

  11. Hmmm, Pretty great tips ! 😉 You know I’ve been having a hard time balancing blogging with studies but after reading this I might just be able to overcome it. Thanks for the post 🙂

  12. Amazing Kerry! I came to this post while in the process of trying to catch up on email notifications. I set some to daily and most to weekly. I was also in the process of unfollowing some because I felt it was unfair to hardly ever get in and my ‘tastes’ have changed over time. I used to follow the reader more but felt I was missing a lot of posts so opted for email more. Now I’m drowning! So, I’m taking a leaf out of your book. Going back in to switch off most email notifications and back to the reader. 😉 x

    • Good! I’m glad this post was timed with your experience! It is hard trying to keep up and I know I will miss some but it would be impossible not to. We do have to live a life too, right? 😉 I like the switch to the Reader very much…feels like a weight off.

      • I don’t follow everybody by email. The posts that I absolutely want to read, (like yours, my blogging buddy) I have emailed to my account. Mostly I keep them in the reader, though. What I have to stop doing is clicking the “Notify me of follow-up comments” box. Ugh Talk about clogging up the email box.

  13. I use a Reader as well (which is due to be caught up on, and I am in the process of that), but at the moment trying to these ridiculous pressures off myself to be perfect. I blog because I enjoy it. That’s the bottom line for why anyone should do anything, and as soon as it’s not doing that, something needs to change 🙂
    Fantastic post, Kerry, and great timing.

  14. Oh my! I have the same obsession! I used to stress about how often I post, then I gave myself permission to only post when inspired. I also used to stress about reading blogs. I still get the emails of the ones I really want to read, but I let them sit and to a mass read once a week or so, even giving myself a time limit not to go over. If they all don’t get read, the world won’t stop spinning.

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