I've spent some time this week doing something totally opposite of what I've spent the last few months to a year doing. I sat down and unfollowed a bunch of people on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Bloglovin. I'm not talking one or two here or there... I mean, I unliked about 190 pages on Facebook. I unfollowed over 100 people on Twitter. On a normal day when I'd log into Bloglovin, I'd have 50 to 60 new posts to read. Today when I logged in, I had 6. Truly a social media purge.
Why would one do this? Isn't the whole point of social media to interact with lots of different people? What about that whole blogging 'community' that everyone is always talking about? Well, to sum it up kinda quickly, seeing all of those posts and the tweets and the whole blogging community mumbo jumbo every single day, was sucking my happiness out. I'll explain...
I don't mean that the people that I unfollowed or unliked were intentionally doing bad things to me. Yes, there were a few times when I felt snubbed by a few of them, but I'd whine about it to some friends and get over it... but there was still just something about blogging and social media that made me sad now... and that is not how it used to be.
In my first post of this year, I wrote this:
Honestly, I think I got too caught up in trying to 'fit in' and grow my readership and all that stuff... I stopped wanted to write blog posts that were important to me... and just write for a new link up everyday. I lost sight of the reason that I started blogging in the first place. I felt like the posts that really mattered, no one was reading or responding to. I have to get past all of that and just keep blogging... maybe the numbers will come, maybe they won't... but I have to just keep writing and not worry so much about all of the statistics...I got caught up in all of that again after just a few short posts. Constantly seeing posts from bloggers who posted every day and feeling the pressure to do the same... watching them grow their communities while all I get are hundreds of spam comments... just not feeling like I could ever really break into this whole mystical blogging community was making me sad, and my blog was and still is suffering for it.
Do I think that there is a great blogging community? Of course I do, but somewhere you have to find where you fit into it... and I just haven't found my place, yet. I always felt like an outsider, and I know that part of it was me... but there were also times where I tried very hard to fit in a be liked and those attempts were blatantly ignored. To other bloggers out there: If you think that readers don't notice their comments that you delete or never respond to, or notice the behaviors of link up hosts, etc... you are wrong. Readers notice all of that. Here's the other thing about this blogging community... it is very cliquish. I'm talking High School, Mean Girls, cliques. I don't normally do well with those kinds of situations in real life, so there's no way that I want to deal with it online.
A lot of the people/blogs that I stopped following were ones that I'd just started following to enter some massive giveaway or something... and I truly didn't read their posts or interact with them much at all, so they weren't such a big loss. There were others who on most days, I enjoyed what they had to say and would comment from time to time... but reading their blogs was no longer working for me...
So, I just made the decision that I was going to do some "Spring cleaning" and only keep blogs and people on my list who I feel that I have genuinely connected with in some way. I won't ever stop reading new blogs, but from now on, I'm just going to be a lot picker when it comes to actually following, religiously reading and committing to a blog.
I've made friends online with people that I've never met before... some of them, I have been friends with for years... but I felt like all of the people I cut out weren't contributing to my happiness, and on most days were decreasing it, so they had to go.
Have you ever done a social media purge?