I’ve been doing a lot of thinking recently about the purpose of my blog. I want it to have value for the people who read it, but I also want my thoughts, feelings, and experiences – my voice – to come through. Recently, I’ve found it hard to do both.
The people who are really adding value on the blogosphere are sharing their in-depth research, expensive experience, and expert opinions. But when you’re a 22-year-old with passable competencies and recreational curiosities like me, an attempt at adding value in any of those ways comes off half-baked and unoriginal. I, along with probably millions of other millennial bloggers, play at being the expert or the critic, trying to get the world to take me seriously and show everyone how smart I am.
Not only is this not really contributing any value to anyone (who knows how to google search), it lacks my genuine voice. Listing the top 3 takeaways of ‘X’ or what never to do at ‘Y’ or best practices in ‘Z’ are either unqualified or someone else’s (probably another blogger’s).
The few time I’ve written something that read like I was saying it, it didn’t come from a place of authority. It stemmed from feelings of vulnerability, confusion, and crisis of purpose.
The truth is, as much I want to play the online expert, my genuine voice has far more questions than answers. I’m trying to be adult, build skills, foster relationships, and, oh by the way, cope with the greatest awareness of the greatest social and environmental problems of any generation in the history of humanity. That brings up a lot of questions without many answers. When I write in my own genuine voice, that’s what comes through.
The question is, is that something worth reading? Is that something even worth writing? I don’t want to just write another blog. I like to write, but if it’s not going to add value to others I might as well keep my rambling insecurities in a journal.
A Benjamin Franklin quote comes to mind, “Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” Instead of wrestling each week with how I make the experiences of my life relevant and useful to others, maybe I should focus on actually doing something worth emulating. Maybe it’s time to stop the commentary and start doing something. Maybe it’s time to start doing something worth writing about.