So What Happens When a Blogger Reaches the Wall? (She Writes a New Door.)

Blogging is a baby bird whose gaping mouth cries endlessly for more. Even as I hit “publish” I often already hear swirling whispers of my next post.  Hey…I hear them now and I don’t even know exactly what this one will say yet.

I love this blog and I love my readers. But some days, as much as I empathize with the pain so many are going through…as much as I want to hug all of you and tell you it will be ok…as much as I know I can make a difference just by taking the time to answer your questions and show you someone is listening and cares…I am hit by the thought “What about me? What about my needs?”

And my first reaction to that thought is how selfish I’m being – especially now when the need for career and interview help is so great. But I also know in this economy, with so many people needing help, it’s unfortunately an endless need. A need no one person can or should ever hope to fulfill. And as my traffic grows (a wonderful thing for sure), my window on the need grows too.  And to stay sane but also to start to pay attention to my own needs, I’ve reached a point where I finally have to start honoring my semi-recent policy of not answering everyone – which I have never to this moment done despite promising myself and my readers I would.

Instead, so no one would be left hanging, I simply started writing shorter answers…well, at least I tried. Plus I answered less frequently – although eventually I answered.  But so often the request is urgent – PLEEEEASE answer right now. PLEEEASE help me stop driving myself crazy over maybes and what ifs! And it touches my heart. Still I had to learn – and I’m still learning – to just let it wait until I have the time to answer. Boundaries – such a tough thing. And yet…day by day, it’s getting easier if I may be honest – because the alternatives are to either spend way too much of my time chained to the computer or let this blog go completely. And to borrow from the wisdom of Bartleby, the Scrivener, “I would prefer not…” (Although I do hope for a happier ending than Bartleby.)

So now, as more and more I hear the call of the blogging anti-muse, I am looking for ways to keep this going, but also ways to move on. My thoughts at this moment are to back off further and open up the blog even more to readers (and some invited coaches) willing to help out. What a wonderful thing if my personal need to re-aim my energy would result in this blog becoming even more of a resource for folks to help and support each other. I love that some of you are already doing that and invite you and others to step in and help take up my “I prefer not” slack.

Oh…I’m not going away. This is my baby bird after all. 😉 For as long as I can, I’ll still stop by to say hello and answer questions once in while (I already feel myself wavering…be strong). But maybe if I don’t have to answer ALL the questions or even most…well maybe then I will be able to more fully turn my attention to some of my own dreams. I happen to be in a career and life transition of my own (just finished a certificate program at NYU on Sunday). I have only some idea of where I’ll wind up both for  career (hint: probably not career coaching) and home (may be moving to the Bay Area…stay tuned). But whatever it is I wind up creating for myself, I’m itching to get to it already!

And so, after much soul-searching, I’ve realized it’s time to step back from here – for as long as it feels right. That also includes changing what I post about. I’m sure I’ll still write advice posts now and then (some are still coming up since I already started them); but there’s already a lot of advice here – as well as many readers who have been through it themselves. So until I figure out what this blog eventually morphs into (assuming it does), I’ll be writing about work-related topics that amuse me or get me riled or simply fascinate me for whatever reason. It might even get my blogging juices going again.

So off I go now to write a new door for myself. Wish me luck. Ill definitely let you know what happens. 😉

~ Ronnie Ann

And if you’re a blogger who went through this (or are going through it right now), please tell me how you’re handling the wall!  Did you try to change your blog? Did it survive? If not, did a new one get born in its place?  Words of wisdom and your own stories very welcome!

 

About the author…

Ronnie Ann, founder of Work Coach Cafe, bases her real-world advice on her many years as an organizational consultant where she helped interview and hire people, added to a certificate from NYU in Career Planning & Development and her own adventures as a serial job seeker. She can also be found on her new blog, and on Google+.

Comments

  1. Ronnie Ann, I read your blog faithfully but next-to-never comment. I’ve searched previous articles and love to read the comments. Your blog has been a tremendous resource and support to me in my personal job situations and searches. I have been amazed at the care you show in your comments back to readers. Both you and the readers you attract have inspired me, motivated me, and at times, helped me keep going.

    It’s very obvious that this blog has been a labor of love in many ways. It’s also completely understandable that at a certain point, the best thing you can do for YOURSELF is to step back, both to sustain your own inner strength, and to let your work gather its own momentum and evolve. I think you are a wise woman to recognize the need to shift gears for yourself, and do so…hard as it will be to let this blog, “your baby,” grow on without the constant, heartfelt attention you’ve given.

    I will continue to check in on this site and – probably silently – continue to cheer YOU on and wish you well in your own personal endeavors.

  2. Dear Ronnie,

    First let me acknowledge I’m not just a reader but a long time friend. So what I am about to say comes more from that experience than that of a reader to the blog (though I read it regularly).

    While reading this post I was so struck with how considerate and heartfelt it is. Once again you are doing your finest at balancing your needs with those of your readers. You always give 100% (even when you may think you are slacking off) and your readers know and appreciate that. Take comfort that you have been there with quality information – and most important – a wholeheartedness that is rare these days.

    Yes, you did all the smart things a blogger needs to do – you tweeted, you networked, you drove traffic to the site – but MOST OF ALL – you were there for the readers. And most of them will really get that.

    So, as a fledgling blogger, I salute you. You have and will continue to be (did I mention I have another question?!) a suppport and resource to me. As a friend, I say, follow your heart and your dreams. Your needs are speaking to you from that place – and sadly, too many of us don’t listen to the calling of our heart’s desires.

    Louise

  3. Dear Ronnie
    We met and became friends because we both blog … and love blogging.

    I think this is one of those times when the solution isn’t ‘either/or’ it’s ‘and’.

    Stay with the blog … and … write less often.

    There is already an amazing wealth of information on this site … and maybe it’s time to bring some of the backlog to the front … or have a few posts that just list similar themes.

    I haven’t written on LizBiz for nearly a month … and the bird is tweeting but I’m a bit too busy living at the moment … it won’t starve as there’s plenty of food for it already on the blog.

    I’ll never leave the blog as I love writing and putting up photos of Ballinamore … I’ve also never let it rule me.

    I don’t give a flying crap about reader figures anymore [although I am very very fond of my readers and people who leave comments] … so I’m not chasing them.

    I write when I want to … not because I feel obliged … and therefore I love it.

    I went back to my very first post in jan 2007 and read the reasons why I wanted to start a blog in the first place … and they are still the same.

    Congrats by the way on completing your course … and mucho congrats on giving yourself the space and courage to dream/live the next parts of your adventure.

    The blog will always be here and you will always write for it … you have the power to choose how often you want to write.

    Now … go play and explore and dream …

    xxxLiz

  4. Can’t wait to see what’s next for you, Ronnie!

  5. Lane Zane says:

    Hi Ronnie Ann,

    I think it has been so nice of you to show concern and reach out to people. It is so rare to find a special person like you who cares. However, I can understand how you need time for yourself. I certainly appreciate all the comments made to me. I love this site and have recommended it to anyone I know who is job searching. There is so much valuable information on it. I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

  6. Wouldn’t it be nice if someone came up with a sample format for a carreer blog? I think I’ll come up with something creative but neutral. I wouldn’t want it to read like a resume OR a whine fest.

  7. Ronnie Ann,
    I totally understand what you are going thru right now. You’ve done a great job, and I am one of the many people who feel blessed to have found your blog. You’ve been a tremendous help.
    So whatever you end up doing, I’m wishing you all the best. I happen to live in the bay area, so if that move happens, please let me know. I would love to take you to a nice dinner for being there for me in my time of need.

    Jay

  8. and here i was thinking how bad of me for not replying to your last e-mail to me! i guess you must be more relieved that i didn’t reply. :mrgreen: i hope with this blogging break or priority reshuffle you’ll find more time to do things you enjoy. meanwhile, i hope you don’t stop tweeting! there’s only so much you can say there, it’ll hardly take your time. 😛

  9. Hey Ronnie Ann-
    As a person who asked for personal advice, I was amazed at your ability to set very professional yet kind boundaries. So I get what you are saying here. We should “work to live” (or blog, as the case may be), not “Live to work”-and any job, no matter how joyful, can become an agent of stress if it becomes overwhelming. So you go girl! You got it going on, and have some great opportunities opening up for you now. The users of your blog will help each other, knowing that you are keeping an eye out.

  10. Whatever and whenever you write, Ronnie, there will clearly be many of us ready to read and reap the benefits of your wise and generous musings and/or good counsel. Best of luck.

  11. Hi Ronnie Ann,

    I thought about writing under this post as not only your replies are so precious and important.

    I read your articles with passion. One of them (about the impatience on waiting for THE CALL after the interview) helped me a lot when I was looking for new job last autumn. Now it is almost third month since they called me back (Hurrah!) after a horrible two-week period of post- interview- OCD, which looked absolutely like stolen from your description. I am still so happy with my new job!

    I will ALWAYS remember that you helped me to understand the other perspective, despite I live in so much different country than yours.

    Thank you soooooo much!!!

  12. Thank you so much for all the lovely support! I want to frame your beautiful comments (except that would be more work. 😉 )

    Please forgive me for not answering individually…but also please know I’ve read all your comments a few times and it touches me deeply that you took the time to express such beautiful sentiments. And to those of you who broke your silence to wish me well…your comments mean a lot to me. I’m honored by all of you. And to those of you who have welcomed me as a friend over the years…there is no greater treasure. (Plus…you are not rid of me by any means.) One of the greatest joys of blogging really is about the people you meet. Thank you!

    And I’m not going away…just giving myself permission to do less and enjoy more. Sometimes that alone can be enough of a change to make things work better.

    ~ Ronnie Ann

  13. Hey, Ronnie Ann. I know we talked about your need to do this. Glad you’re moving ahead with it. I look forward to seeing how things evolve.

  14. Great to know we’re not rid of you, RA! There is much disturbance in the force these days, but I believe all is well in the midst of change. You know I would always wish for you that you follow your heart. ♥ You have posted much here, and your topics will be rich fields of information and support for eons to come. I think I’m as moved by the comments here as by the original post. Ya done good, girlfriend! And I await with curiosity and excitement the next step of your journey. Peace, love, and all good things!

  15. Thanks Terry and my dear Muse! May the force find a smooth period – at least while I’m on my way to the next leg of my adventure. 😉

    To all of you…your support and good wishes are much appreciated – as always. Meanwhile…my very best wishes to each of you. See you in a couple o’ weeks!

    ~ Ronnie Ann

  16. I’m a big fan of empathy; I admire your desire to help others. But, alas, it’s important to look out for number one, too.

    Thanks so much for replying to my posts. And a big congratulations on completing the certificate program! Sounds like you’re getting your ducks in a row. I’m so inspired! 🙂

    I only recently found this wonderful site, but I’ll continue to check in.

    All the best!

  17. s. williams says:

    dear work coach, I was recently given the option to resign or be terminated. I chose to volunteer at a job site,because I was new to this field, and wanted to gain hands on experience.Little did I know that I would be put on their paid work schedule with less than 1 hour of hands on training.Mind you they sent me through a material training course,which I did very well ,but I was not ready or aware of what was coming next.I was plunged into a setting that was very chaotic and at times unorgainized.There were workers who handled it better,but they had been doing this type of work for years.Anyway,I chose to resign(I don’t know if that was best or not)how do I interview now?

  18. I’ve currently had a new job offer from a competitor. I then approached my employer and it did’nt go according to plan. As there was no counter offer or nothing to state I was a wanted member of staff.

    All i got was a telling off stating I didnt state I did’nt state the truth…

    Please advise as I have weighed up the pros and cons, im not sure what to do..

    As im feel really uncomfortable everytime I go to the office(i dnt know why I should as all I did was apply for a new job)

  19. Thanks Perri! (Or do you prefer small “p” as in perri?) Nicely said. BTW…I love your energy and appreciate your comments. Feel free to stop by anytime!

    ~ Ronnie Ann

  20. Hi s. williams and a1073!

    I just got back from almost 2 weeks away and have way too many questions to answer. Although I wish I could help each and every reader, as you will see on this blog, I have had to start a policy of not answering every question because I get so many.

    The good news s. williams is, there are posts on this blog that speak to your question. Just use the search function or categories or look in Popular Posts.

    As for you a1073, I can’t tell you what to do without knowing all the details – and even then I wouldn’t dare to advise from afar when you are the only one who knows the answer. If it were me, I’d sit with my manager and honestly ask about my future at the current company. If it looks bleak, I’d move on.

    I wish you both much luck!

    ~ Ronnie Ann

    (OK. Clearly I still need practice NOT answering, but at least I made an effort! 😉 )

  21. Hi ronnie

    thank you for your response. I now feel really uncomfortable there after my previous email. I had to go home early earlier in the week to get my child from school. My line manager asked for an accident note from the school which he has never asked before, when I’ve had to leave to get my child on other occasions. I believe I have now lost the trust of the management, which is making it really uneasy for me.

    Any ideas?

    Ps. I know you have stated you where going to stop replying, but I would appreciate if you would reply on this occasion

  22. Hi again A1073,

    I’m very sorry how things are going for you, but other than asking your boss where you stand, I don’t know how else you can assess your chances where you are so you can make your choice.

    In the end, no “expert” can (or should) tell you what to do. This is a great time to reach inside and trust your own instincts and make your own strong choices. Only you can know the right thing to do for yourself. It’s empowering to realize the power is within us all along.

    Best of luck! 😉

    ~ Ronnie Ann

Speak Your Mind