Whether you blog as a hobby, a business, a creative outlet, a lifestyle choice or a bit of all of these things, every now and again it might be a good idea to step off the treadmill and take a blog break.
What is a blog break?
The question may sound obvious, but if going cold turkey is too much for you, remember you drive this thing and it’s your rules. Define your break however you want to – perhaps a week of no social media, or no writing, no accepting new paid work, or perhaps all of these things.
Conversely, it may surprise you to consider that a break from all the admin side of blogging is when you feel most inspired to write creatively again, and the words flow freely away from the pressure of timings and structure.
Perhaps during a longer blog break you may choose to accept the odd piece of paid work, as it’s just too good to turn down, regardless of your ‘out of office’ status.
Why take a blog break?
Because frankly, even bloggers need a bit of annual leave. The constant drive to generate and promote content, reply to emails, be present on social media, around the busy chaos of family life can be depleting to your zest for that life you are merrily writing about. Take a step back, breathe, experience some things worth writing about, and enjoy a bit of time just for you and your family’s benefit…not your audiences.
Sometimes a break from publishing can be a valuable time to stockpile material, so you can come back feeling less ‘hand to mouth’ with commitments and content. We are all different, but scheduling even just a few days at a time using an editorial calendar makes me feel much more organised with blog posts, and without a few ‘in the bag’, generating material can feel a little erratic.
You might simply want your evenings or daylight hours back for a bit. You might want to read a book, instead of blogs. You may be going on holiday. Or, you might just be feeling a bit ‘meh’ about blogging.
When to take a blog break
We are all different, but I like to think of my blogging in chunks aligned to the school calendar. Half terms and summer breaks are therefore the obvious time to decompress and spend time with the kids.
The 6 weeks summer blog break is obviously not for the faint hearted, so I tend to switch into a revised schedule, posting odds and ends if and when I feel like it, but relieving myself any proper commitments and duties. I can do that, I’m my own boss.
There may be family events, bereavements, special birthdays, trips away. You should never feel as though you have to put your blog ahead of life’s landmarks – there will always be times when you are needed elsewhere.
Remember with blogging, nothing is set in stone. If you feel you are falling out of love with your blog, perhaps a week or two away from it at any time will rejuvenate your passion and leave you coming back feeling inspired. Your blog, your rules remember.
How to take a blog break
Generally, bloggers fall into one of two camps. Team A will spend weeks preparing filler posts and scheduling in to their break. You as their audience may not even know they aren’t ‘there’. Thus, maintaining a steady stream of views and metrics, these A-game bloggers are pro’s for a reason.
The rest of us (hi) go for a more rustic approach: Turn off laptop. Stats will surprise you as old content continues to pull readers, and metrics may not suffer as much as you expect. For me, the beauty of a break is knowing none of it really matters, and finding out it’s all exactly where you left it on your return. Switch on your out of office, switch off your mind…and if you really can’t do that, capture all your ideas in a notebook for a time you feel like letting the pent up creative juices flow.
Have a fab half term… see you on the other side.