Masochism and blog fatigue

Hello sweet peas.

Isn't that a lovely title for a blog?! I'm full of hormones (my cycle is like every 3 weeks now, yay uggghhhh) and I'm thinking about some stuff that I probably shouldn't put out onto the internet. I think too much, that's the trouble.

Awards and masochism

I got an email today from Navabi about entering their blog awards and got to thinking about the process of being in a competition where my blog would be judged/voted on. For me it's like volunteering to be crucified to put myself through that, and yet there's a battle going on between head and heart. It goes a little like this.

Heart - Oh, it might be nice to be in the running.
Head - Are you effing crazy? You'll never win.
Heart - With that attitude you definitely won't! It's not the winning anyway, doofus, get over yourself. It's the taking part.
Head - True. But if I enter then I'll be really unenthusiastic about asking people to vote for me as it screams WON'T YOU PLEASE LIKE ME? PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE.
Heart - Why?
Head - Well, because part of me wants to be archly cool and not give a shit about awards and suchlike and whether people like me, and another part of me cares very much about whether people like this blog (and by extension me) or not. And some recognition might be nice...........
Heart - Do it then.
Head - ............but what if I enter and not a single person votes for me? I'm prickly and TMI and coarse and play the joker so much no one takes me seriously. Won't it just reinforce the 'I'm not worthy' feeling I already have?
Heart - What have you got to lose?
Head - Erm, my dignity?! It would make me as vulnerable as standing naked on a plinth in Trafalgar bloody Square!
Heart - Loser!

The thought of putting myself into a competition is kinda like being picked last for sports at school. I was ALWAYS picked last for sports, apart from in rounders once in junior school when I knocked the ball about 50 yards and everyone wanted me the next week, but alas it was a one-off. Meh. It's the mental torture all over again of 'No one's going to pick me, I just know no one's going to be pick me, please pick me, oh bugger no one's going to pick me, pick me, PICK ME, oh shit no one picked me, I hate everything and wish I hadn't bothered!'

I don't think it's that I'm a sore loser, I just think I'm so used to being 'picked last' that I have a defeatist attitude from the get-go and combined with my 'Only vote for me if you think I deserve it!' attitude VS other people's 'I'm bloomin' marvellous so if you don't vote for me you're quite clearly bananas!' appeals to people. People LIKE assured people, and deep down I'm still not one. Not completely. With my body, yes. With other stuff, not so much. So part of me thinks to enter would be akin to masochism. It'd be like choosing to torture myself.

Blog fatigue

I started my other blog and I feel so free when I write there. It's weird - again there's a fight between head and heart. One side of me LOVES the freedom of being able to write whatever the hell I like, loves having no expectations of me there, loves not having many people know about it, loves not having an email account attached to it, a Twitter, a Facebook. It's as free as the wind. I'm also incredibly grateful for this blog, the friends and opportunities it has brought me, and the readers I have. I wish I could feel as free here as I do there, and that's in my head, I know that. I feel kinda like I'm cheating on this blog with that blog! Over there there's no pressure at all. If I want to write about the mating habits of the Peruvian dinklecougher, I can do without worrying about turning people off. And I fear the other blog will end up better than this blog because this one has so many expectations attached to it. And not forgetting as this is my 'job' because of Fibromyalgia/CFS/depression I put a lot of my heart, soul and happiness into this.

Things that stress me about this blog

1. Stats, or rather the feeling that I should give a shit because it's the done thing.

2. Endless advice about how to blog and every aspect of it. It suffocates creativity. I think a lot of bloggers write for other bloggers when they should write for their READERS.

3. Posting often enough (whatever 'enough' is).

4. Getting enough outfits posted when I feel shitty so much of the time (especially now quality light is as rare as unicorn poop - that horrid grey light we get most of the time washes out outfit photos).

5. Endless emails to my blog account, 75% of which are spam and have no relevance to me at all.

6. Trying to remember to share my posts on a bajillion social media sites.

7. My feelings of inadequacy and not matching up to other plus size bloggers.
Here's the thing - the plus size blogging community is huge in the UK (pardon the pun!) I've made some friends for life and a lot of casual acquaintances. (I also think of my readers like extended family after all this time). I'm friends with over 100 bloggers on Facebook. I follow probably 5 times as many bloggers on Twitter. I follow bloggers on Instagram, Tumblr and Pinterest. My whole social media life is saturated with plus size bloggers, and for 3/4 of my menstrual cycle and when I'm having great mental health, this is awesome and I love it. As I said just above, this is my 'job' and thus I think about it a lot of waking hours, probably more than is healthy. Then I go to social media and it's bloggers bloggers bloggers. Most of the time this is a blessing. I don't have blog friends on social media to 'network' with, I'm friends with them as I like them as people. But it can be too much, as seeing their blogs all day on my social media feeds makes me feel like I have no break. If I worked in engineering, I wouldn't go home and spend my evening looking up everything engineering, you know? There needs to be a separation somehow.

I love seeing my fellow ladies succeed until my hormones or MH are in the gutter and then I feel the stupid urge to compare rise up within me, and it means I'm thinking 'Gotta do better, gotta do better!' And for most people, this is a healthy competitiveness. But part of my depression is holding myself up to ridiculous standards so I can self-flagellate. And I forget I'm not playing with a full deck of cards, you know - Fibro, CFS and the black dog take such a lot out of me. No matter what happens or what would happen, I would always find a reason to beat myself up for some imagined failing.

So actually this 'fun' thing is often like a hair shirt for me, and when I sit down to write a post here, I don't feel free. I feel free at the other blog because I guess it's a lifestyle blog and I haven't immersed myself in lifestyle bloggers THANK GOD and therefore I'm not endlessly comparing myself to others with every word I write.

So something has got to change, and that thing has got to be ME, or I'm going to quit this blog altogether, and that would be a shame. Even I can see that, mentally tormented as I am.

It's so exhausting being in my head. Thanks for reading my train of thought. I think the train needs to pull into the station for some essential maintenance. :D

Leah xoxo

TL;DR - hormones, meh, wibble, brain fart.

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