When I started writing my blog, a part of me craved recognition through it. After all, I was in the middle of changing careers and achievements seemed far away within the folds of my career path. Also, I was heartily sick of donning the journo hat, covering events, writing about what other people (many of whom I thought were complete idiots, even though they headed companies their fathers and grandfathers had started!) said or thought and even ghost writing articles for others. I wanted to be written about, talked about, discussed, admired, looked up to.
Of course, once I started blogging regularly, I put all of that ambition on the back burner and got into the business of making the blog work. For me first and then for my readers. Its taken a lot of sincerity and discipline to blog daily and certainly, it’s helped me grow as a writer and as a person. Simultaneously, my return to urban planning as a career worked out beautifully and I get immense satisfaction from what I do at mHS as well. I must appreciate the enabling and flexible environment mHS has provided to me to be able to work and write and do a million other things at the same time and the trust vested in me to go ahead and tackle projects, presentations and situations for mHS on my own.
But to get back to the issue of recognition… It felt really good to be on a public forum talking about my journey as a blogger today. Thanks to Fleximoms and Intel, who sponsored the Techmoms seminar today in Delhi.
It’s the passion that makes a blog(ger) tick!
It struck me that bloggers come from diverse backgrounds and come to blogging from very different places. Yet, there seem a few things in common. Honesty, a true desire to explore one’s own feelings and experience, a need to share. Blogging induces in a person a certain quality of self-reflection that we otherwise tend to miss in our daily lives. In that sense, it is like writing a diary. Even though it might be about a specific subject, a blog is usually about something the blogger is passionate about and so it works as a medium to express a suppressed or alternate or emerging personality. It was fascinating to hear from other women, and men too, how career choices change depending on the stage of life you are in. Because you want different things at different points.
Dealing with an overly connected world
And yes, it is indeed magical that technology and a changing world that offers multiple possibilities, allows us to make those changes in our careers. Reinvent ourselves. Grow.
Growing up, I watched my mother struggle to balance her numerous interests and passions with work. I couldn’t help admire her for being able to pursue so many of her hobbies, even if one at a time, with a demanding career (she’s a doc) and family demands. For our parents’ generation, a professional education was a highly respected thing and it demanded that you respect its boundaries as well. Security of employment was paramount and work and hobby were two distinct zones in your life.
For me, everything is intertwined and inter-related. It’s a world of busy chaos, where I sift through the rubble of my mind, picking up one piece of stone on one day and another relic on the other hand. At times, it all comes together in a clear, orchestrated set of activities that make connections with each other. At other times, things fly in opposing directions and I watch amused and exasperated, or frustrated and angry!
But that’s life! Through the activity of blogging and the clarity I need in my head to write about what I experience and feel everyday, I now see that the ups and downs have to be lived through. Knowing does not make it easier when you are low, but the blog gives me that small thing to look forward to, that tiny push that I need to haul myself out and put the smile back on my face again.
The hardest bit is being true to oneself, always
Another thing I heard at the event was that the world of social networking is an intrusive one. Definitions of privacy are changing and it’s hard to understand and manage our online lives. Often our personal experiences and actions are questioned unnecessarily and we are expected to be politically correct all the time. That can be tiring and plain unreal. Blogging allows us to be what we are and it’s something bloggers should never ever compromise on.
Ultimately its about what you want from your blog…
I don’t really know where I am going with my blog. I do know that once 2012 is over, I will have to reduce my frequency of blogging and go into a more reflective mode. I cannot sustain this intensity. But I also know that clear themes are emerging on this blog that can be explored separately or one by one. On the blog or off of it. It depends on how much of my life I want to devote to writing I suppose.
Other bloggers on the forum were heading for being published, writing books and other forms of recognition through their writing and knowledge. For me, I’m not yet sure what the next steps are.
But I do know that as long as I enjoy writing, I will do so. I cannot thank enough the people who read my blog and even though I didn’t believe in this sort of stuff before, I do sense the energies flowing in from the good wishes and critical appreciation of my readers. Every now and then, someone unexpected from my extended world of acquaintances pops up with a reference to my blog and it makes it that much more exciting to be a blogger! In the end I guess, despite the high brow fundas about self-improvement and personal journeys, it’s all about the pats on the back 🙂 At least for me, let me be honest, it always has been…