Sunday, 31 July 2011

Is it for me?

Am I the right kind of person to be writing a blog? Is there a 'certain type' that writes blogs? I am thinking that yes there is and I am possibly not it.

I started writing this blog purely through chance, I found Blogger and it is such an easy application to use I thought I would give it a go and join the blogging world.
I originally thought I would just write about myself,my life, my feelings and things that affect me. No problem with that, it would possibly appeal to my friends on twitter, those who maybe would like to know me a bit better than the 140 characters allow. So Penny's points was born.

I was surprised at how interested I then was in how many were reading the blog,the comments that were being left and the people who seemed to be interested in what I wrote. I found myself checking my stats often, far more often that was healthy really! Had my usual friends seen this one? Had they commented on it? Had they 'liked' what I had written? Oh dear, I am starting to feel like that young girl again who is trying too hard to gain approval. I told myself I wouldn't feel bad if people disagreed with me, criticised my blog or didn't read it at all, but I do!

One of the characteristics of my personality that I am fully aware of but unable to change is my sensitivity to others, it's hard to explain but I actually 'feel' for other people, fine you may say for my family and friends, that's normal surely? But for everyone? People I talk to? People I read comments about?
Let me give you an example....
I watched a person on twitter being picked on by others, in all honesty she had started it and to a point probably deserved it but when she consequently deleted her account I 'felt' awful for her. Now I had no hand in any of it, she wasn't even someone I spoke to much but I watched for weeks to see if she came back, thought about her and worried about how she must be feeling.
Yes, I got over it but I think you would agree it's a bit extreme.

So is this really a good idea? Blogging and opening myself up to others?
Yes it's fine when it's all sweet and agreeable, it boosts me up I won't pretend it doesn't, it makes me feel valued that bit more, it makes me feel worthy when people are interested in what I write. But what when it's negative? I'm not good with criticism, who is? But if justified I will take and absorb it but when something I have written leads to cross words among others I am not sure I can handle that, my blog becomes something other than the platform for me to ramble, give my views, air my feelings and share parts of my life, and I am not sure I can cope with the feelings this brings out in me, I'm not sure I want to feel responsible for causing friction or bad feeling because I 'feel' it too. So I am thinking seriously about blogging and is it for me?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


Anonymous said...

Lecture time cuz: I knew this would happen when I read the last blog and accompanying comments. This is just conversation and opinion sharing on a greater scale and with strangers. You are facilitating, and not responsible for, others. It's natural to 'feel' for others, you are particularly sensitive to other's plights and that's why you are a carer, a psychologist and an amazingly tolerant person. But, you must NOT stop blogging, you love it and are bloody brill at it. Don't start the punishing yourself for others reactions. This is good for you, it pulls you out of your safe bubble and you should realise that people still like you, love you and respect you despite a few hard words. So come on Doc, stop running and stand up for your blogees who enjoy reading 'you' x

Stotty said...

well said comment..... x

mumof5boys said...

I love your blogs Penny, please dont stop! x

Ian Beckett said...

Like anything we do in life if the pain or the downs begin to outway the pleasure or the highs, generally I would say stop doing it. If you voice your opinions publically then inevitably you will encounter people who disagree. Some people will disagree amicably and some will be harsh. A reasoned objection is worth reading. Abuse should be trashed (though its hard not to read it and be affected by it).
I have never met you but in a short space of time (often through 140 characters or less) I have concluded that you give a damn about the lives of ordinary people (and animals). I have also concluded that you have and will continue to make a diffrence to peoples lives. If I'm correct in that, carry on doing what you do - including blogging. But learn to broaden your shoulders and look after number one. After all - if you don't look after yourself how can you hope to be there for others?
Sorry if that sounds like someone teaching a grandmother (and a psychologist) to suck eggs but it is meant with sincerity and warmth x

tinysuz said...

Just read your latest blog Penny, I always read them and enjoy them even if I do not post a comment, so please do not stop!

Kelly said...

Dear Penny,
First & most importantly, you should blog if you want to be part of the democratic social media, having your say that reaches across the world.

Second, I hope you won't make decisions based on what someone else says or doesn't say in response to your blog posts. If there is a "type" to be a blogger, it is NOT me. When I began 2 1/2 years ago, all the blogs (of a certain topic) commented on each other in a circular fashion. They didn't necessarily seem to read the blog or really argue the issues like folks are here engaging on yours! Within a short time, I realized that I did not have enough time to read & leave links on all the readers' blogs as they were expecting me to - I had too many readers & I had too much to do to spend all my time that way. So, my long story ends this way: I could not be the type for blogging & some of them became indignant about my lack of cooperating w/the protocol. It was ok, new readers found me. And I found friends, some of whom blog & some of whom don't. And I realized that it's ok if I'm not the type to be a "blogger." I still have something to say.

So, blog if you like, Penny. And if you have something to say. There are folks who will read & even argue sometimes, which means they are engaging.

Bless your polite honesty and frankness. My favorite type of blog.

rositta said...

I've just come across your blog through RA Warrior. Keep writing because once you stop it's hard to start again. I read a lot of blogs nut comment only when I really have something to add to the conversation. Gratuitous comments aren't my style...ciao

Morag said...

I hope you continue too. I do understand the sensitivity, I am 'that way' too. Maybe you could moderate the blog? I'm learning finally to shy away from things I have problems with. Its hard when you never grew the tougher skin, & lets face it too late now. So, enjoy but look after yourself first. x

Ron said...

Penny, it's simple (I know I've said this privately, but it's worth repeating), use filters to shut out undesirable comments - and people.

The best bloggers always put something of themselves into their output - not to do so results in posts which are so anodyne no-one cares about them. As you've probably noticed, I put a lot of myself into my blog posts (some more than others), and, for me, that works very well.

It does, however - or at least it did in the early days - leave me exposed to a wide assortment of psychos, nutters and just plain weird people. There was one person - a young teenage girl was my impression - who thought accusing me of being gay was a mortal insult. It's not (and I'm not), but it was tiresome, so she became the first person to be put in my keyword filter - it's grown hugely since then.

The bottom line is that blogging will always leave you exposed to the fruitcakes, psychos and plain, old-fashioned lunatics, with which the web is amply supplied. The only way to avoid their attentions is to never be even remotely contentious, and even then they're likely to come and tell you you're boring, along with a torrent of abuse. But, if you want your posts to be interesting, then a degree of contention is, at times, unavoidable. Just write what you want to write, and to hell with them.

I'm not trying to scare you - and if you need advice you know where I am - but until you get your locks and wards in place - which is to say, your filters - you'll be exposed.

Don't let it get you down, just put the fruitcakes in your keyword filter and you'll never see them again.

Above all NEVER engage with these people on any level, no matter how tempting it might be, or how frustrating it might be not to - you'll only encourage them. You cannot debate with these people, partly because many just aren't sane, but mainly because they have no interest in reaching a consensus - they just want to force their views upon you and your readers. And many simply want to upset you. They get off on it.

And if you don't know how to set up things like keyword filters, check out the support forums (sorry I can't help - I use WordPress, which makes this very easy).

Bottom line - don't quit - that'll just make the dingbats happy - another blogger they've driven away.


Ron said...

Almost forgot until I saw the previous comment - you really must moderate your blog (that is, don't publish comments until you've read and approved them). Do that and everything I wrote above will make a lot more sense!


deb aka murphthesurf said...

You need to do what is best for you. I sure would hate for a few bad "apples" to turn you off to blogging but you know what is best for you. You could also turn off comments completely I believe on blogger also. Moderating was another excellent idea also. But after all is said and done if I ever stop getting a positive boost from blogging, I will stop blogging. I mean we aren't getting paid to do this, we aren't making money off of it and I am sure you are doing it to help others out there. And some souls on this earth are sensitive and sensible people like you. I just wish alot more people in this world were like you. So after all is said and done...I for one would love to keep reading your blog!

Anonymous said...

Hi Penny,
After my reply on your last thread, I hadn't seen until now, the replies after mine. I read the gentleman's blog, and at first was outraged as you. Until I noticed a couple of things. First of all, the header at the top of the page, which he then referred to in his blog post. A little TOO arrogant to be genuine. Then the contradiction of whether he was proposing taxing benefits, but the thing that screamed "wind up" the most, was his choice of picture for an unemployed person.
Unfortunately, I think you were targeted by a troll. I know some people assume trolls to be anyone who disagrees with them, but this gentleman was just a bit TOO much, and a little too unconvincing.
I'm sorry that you had to deal with that, but please please don't let him put you off doing your blog. Of course, it's your decision, but know that I and the other people that have commented, would miss your posts. *hugs ya* xxx