I was furiously writing in my journal when the topic for today's post came to me. Lately, I've been thinking a lot about how honest I am in my writing, specifically the writing I do online. Why is it so easy for me to pour my heart out in my private journal, but instantly feel the necessity to change my heart when I'm writing on my blog? The appeal of having an online platform is the ability to share your thoughts and desires with a much larger group of people than otherwise possible, and yet I feel myself recoiling into a shell deemed "advertiser friendly" when I try to do so.
Initially I attributed this reaction to general fear - the fear of being judged, the fear of seeming too brash when I'm normally not, or just the fear of exposing a part of myself that only a select few get to experience. This fear has held me back many a time and has made me feel somewhat disingenuous in certain interactions. Yes, I want to be likeable and appealing to a variety of people, but at the same time how can I do that when I'm not being who I am to the full extent? My blog posts exhibit this the most, as you may have noticed. It may seem like they are kind of all over the place and that's because they are. That's because I am. My mind cannot stay on one topic, in one mindset, or even to one writing style for a long period of time without feeling stifled. Writing gives me my metaphorical wings and trying to constantly please others with it makes me feel like Icarus.
And I know I'm not the only blogger who struggles with online honesty. Many of the blogs I follow will have a posts every few months addressing this topic. To avoid any misinterpretation (or slander), by "honest" I don't mean outwardly lying about anything on their blogs, but rather the withholding of all the ideologies that encompass their personality in the real world. I am, by no means, judging anyone who does this because, at this point, it's evident that many (if not all) of us do.
So, how do we solve this problem? What is the easy fix? The bandaid for this flesh wound? Obviously, I don't have the answer. If I did I wouldn't be writing about how I'm struggling with it. But what I do have is a short list of a few of the changes I am going to make to my blog content going forward that I think will show a more genuine persona online. One that is not swayed by the possible perception of readers, but rather the comments by those who feel viscerally inclined to agree or disagree with my stance on topics.
I am going to:
1) Write about everything I want to talk about
2) Not shy away from topics because they might be "awkward" to discuss
3) Let myself write about how I don't always know what I'm talking about, but it's fun to explore regardless
4) Explore ideas and topics that I've never exposed myself to
5) Shamelessly promote all aspects myself, because I think I'm a pretty good package (albeit a bit neurotic)
6) Be passionate about my writing, otherwise what's the point?
I hope this post made some semblance of sense. If not, leave me a comment about how I need to explain myself better. It makes sense in my head, at least.