1 May 2017

I Almost Quit Blogging

Have you ever felt that you're not good enough at something and the pressure to be better brings on so much stress that it almost brings you to quitting?

Well this was me at the back end of 2016.

When I started blogging it was a whole new world to me, writing for enjoyment was something I had never done before - ever, but for some reason I naturally took to it and by my own admission I did get quite popular and well known quite fast.

But that seems so long ago now, yet it was only two and a half years ago.

I know that people do still say that male bloggers are rare but back when I started we were kind of none existent, well not totally, maybe just there, hiding in the shadows a little bit.
Nowadays though everywhere you look there is a new male blogger popping up and I think it is such a great thing, but I do still feel we are quite a way off from catching up to the scale of the female blogger community.

Back when I began I don't seem to recall there being many smaller male bloggers around - the ones already on the scene were all already quite well established and therefore I felt I had some really good male blogger role models to look up to and gather some insight from of places where I hoped to be someday.

But like I said, writing for fun was never a hobby of mine, nor did I ever expect it to become one - I've always struggled with my spelling and grammar you see but it's something I've always been honest about - with the amount of 'odd mistakes' I make it really isn't something I could hide anyway but I always hoped that my content would grip people, making them want to read the post and then perhaps said flaw could be overlooked...

I do realise there are so many things to consider when it comes to blogging - good content, great pictures, SEO, being a whiz on social media, but with my blog I wanted to focus on the things I felt I was good at rather than muddling through, trying to get each and every factors spot on all of the time.

For me my content and being really social on different social media platforms were my strongest points, I still don't really know much about SEO but I feel I must be doing OK because quite a lot of my posts get really good views daily from Google searches and people looking for things similar to what I'm talking about in the posts.

My content is and always will be totally honest and original and for this I have been complemented loads of times - which is better than great.  

And I know that my blogging routine my be a bit different to others because I never know what I'm going to write until the laptop is open in front of me and I start typing and I do think this is why my content is a little all over the place sometimes, but I think that's OK - it's me and it's real life.

I do find social media really easy and I don't often schedule posts so 99.9% of my tweets are live and I have found that the more sarcastic you are the more interaction you get - which again is perfect for me because I am very much like this all of the time.
I do wish I had more time to tweet and interact through the day though but sometimes with work I don't even get chance to make a brew let alone load up social media but I do always try to get back to people who have interacted with me once I am home though.

My biggest blogger struggle has to be taking them damn PHOTOS - it really isn't easy and it' this part that almost forced me to quit my blog.

I find taking photos of products OK, mainly because I usually try to annoy my wife about it until she offers to do them for me but it's the outfit shots for my fashion posts which I really struggle with and it is such a shame because I love writing these posts; I love fashion and I've found that they are by far the most popular topic of post on my blog.

Finding time to dress up and find photo taking locations during the working week is impossible - I work really long hours every day and then weekends are taken up with Dad duties and taking my son to play both rugby league and rugby union.

There's certainly no time for fancy photo editing either once I have the photos taken - I could never get my shots as perfect as all of those male bloggers I looked up to managed to get theirs looking.

I don't have nice looking, bright white houses on my door step or beautiful, picturesque parks with amazing boating lakes surrounded by perfect flower beds or use as stunning backdrops...I wish I did but nope.

Outside of my house I have half a broken council fence, a tiny patch of seen better days grass, my park pond has about 4 upside down trolleys shoved in which have been nicked from the local Tesco that are swimming next to a lovely mixture of Special Brew cans and White Lightning bottles which the four poor ducks that live there are using as an assault course.

Don't get me wrong, my hometown Bradford does have some very beautiful places but finding the time to get to them can really be a struggle.

I felt so much pressure to get my photos right that I didn't do any outfit posts for ages and I'll admit I felt so jealous when I saw the bloggers I looked up to producing their amazing pictures and then watching their following shoot up partly because of it.

And jealousy was a strange feeling for me because I've never wanted to be like anybody else before and I've never really looked at other bloggers following and compared it to mine...but it was something I found myself feeling more and more and I didn't like it.

So I wanted out.

I still felt this way until a couple of weeks ago actually.

You may of seen quite a bit of drama on Twitter around the subject of cheating on different social media platforms to gain a higher following and for some reason seeing all of this negativity in the blogging community actually fired me up and gave me a massive kick up the arse to get going again and for a few reasons really.

The main one being that actually, as it turned out a few of the bigger bloggers I looked up to - who I still admit do produce killer photos and content - were found to be cheating their way into getting some of their amazing opportunities and their huge followings...it wasn't always a natural progression, so why on earth should I be jealous of that.

So last weekend I pulled out a selection of clothes that I admittedly should have blogged about a while ago, and I put together an outfit.
I pulled my son away from playing with his friends and told him he had to come with me and take some photos (luckily he said yes)

We had a little drive around and I remembered a little spot that I'd seen near to our local post office collection point the last time I picked up a parcel.
The location was a really old youth centre within an estate that had a little graffiti wall area.

It was perfect and, well, here are the results of a quick, spur of the moment, thrown together outfit and my amazing son's camera skills using a really random backdrop in a council estate...

And I'll take you through the outfit too.

The Snapback is from Salaam Apparel and is the 'Gold on Black Tree of Life' with leather brim snapback.

The gold jacket is from Boohooman

The Snoop Dogg tee is also from Boohooman

The black bomber jacket and black skinny jeans are both from Jacamo

And I'll be totally honest I haven't a clue where the watch is from.

But the white leather High Top Pumps are from Boohooman too

I would love to know what you think of this post, the outfit choice and the location, so don't be shy and leave me a comment or two.


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