Beating Blogger Burnout

You’ve probably noticed diminished posts as of late. As in none, whatsoever. Or maybe you didn’t, in which case you were probably also busy living your life and didn’t take any time to think, “Hey, what happened to the Hedgers?” It’s cool… you’re forgiven. In case you’re behind on the news, basically we just stopped writing and sharing things to social media for the past month. We hit a wall and decided it was best to just step back take a well-deserved break.


Blogger Burnout


Our lives might look pretty glamorous from afar, but we still have full time 9-5 jobs. Part time adventure journalists, full time English teachers; except replace “journalists” with “bloggers” and “part time” with “we get out when we can.” Doing both those things on a daily basis was becoming exhausting, like we’re talking bouts of fatigue so extreme that I was borderline narcoleptic. Ryan and I would be chatting together and next thing I’d know he’d be annoyed and shaking me awake like, “did you seriously just fall asleep while I was mid-sentence?!” Maintaining a blog has a way of taking over your life as you are constantly sharing content, interacting on social media, making videos for YouTube (insert shameless plug here), checking stats religiously, and marketing yourself via any means necessary.

We had to reexamine why we were even doing it in the first place. Initially we wanted a way to be creative and work together while documenting our thrilling journey into the unknown (Korea) and all the incredible places we were seeing and strange food we were eating (dog). Okay I made that last part up, we don’t really eat dog. We certainly weren’t doing it for the stats and we never planned on becoming well known. So, in order to get back our mental stability into a better mindset, we had to beat the blogger burnout.

Here’s what we did.

WE TOOK SOME TIME OFF

After going mildly crazy from all the pressures and stress, I just decided one night that no, I wasn’t going to finish writing that post and no, I’m not going to write it tomorrow, either. I felt like a four year old defying my mother, and it was AMAZING. No! I could just say “no.” So we did. Our evenings became about having normal people routines like cooking together, watching TV, and falling asleep on the couch in the middle of an Orange is the New Black episode and waking up grumpy, accusing Ryan of not putting me to bed like the child I am. Last Sunday, we spent the entire day not leaving the apartment once. It was a goddamn dream.

Blogger Burnout

In Yeosu. We pretty much refused to leave our coastal city for the entirety of this month.

WE WROTE FOR FUN

Burnout for me mostly happened when I realized I hated dedicating my free time to writing posts that were only geared to be getting high stat numbers and search hits from Google. Yes, we were getting a ton of traffic to our site, but who were these people? Were they even sticking around to read more? Were they just taking what info they needed and then selfishly bouncing without even leaving a simple comment like, “Yo! Thanks for the info, you guys rock!”? I’m not mad, just leave a comment every now and then. I don’t eat a meal you meticulously prepared for me on date night and then just leave your house without a word. It’s just manners.

So I put down the laptop and grabbed pen and paper and started a journal. I write whatever I want, whenever I want and I don’t have to worry about a single deadline. I am now using said journal for sketching and calligraphy, something I haven’t done in years because I have been too geared towards writing about the “Top 10 Things to do in Insert City Name Here.” Not that I have anything against posts like that or bloggers who write posts like that. Thanks for sharing that info, you guys rock!

Blogger Burnout

A hike we did in Yeosu this past month sans everything except water and a camera. Oh, and cheese. Which melted.

WE UNPLUGGED FROM IT ALL

If at any point you tried to contact Ryan or I over the past month and it took ages for us to respond, we’re sorry (kind of). My phone was used for posting the very occasional Instagram photo but mostly for snoozing my alarm clock 5 times every morning. I couldn’t even be bothered to clear notifications that were coming in and at one point I had over 150 Pinterest notifications and Ryan was like, “okay, you’ve got a problem.” Taking the time to enjoy your personal, private time and to live in each moment is absolutely paramount to mentally stable happy, healthy lives. Ryan’s dad is much the same way in that you may never hear from him for months on end. It honestly used to bug the hell out of us that we were never able to get a hold of him. Jeff, if you’re reading this, I totally get it now.

WE TRIED SOMETHING NEW

This past month has been filled mostly with me rebelling against doing anything and everything outside of the necessary (other than impulse buying a giant unicorn pool inflatable for my birthday, but define “necessary”). I did, however, start learning how to cook a bit more and the results have been, well banana bread mostly, but GOOD banana bread (with some help from Ryan). Who knows? Maybe next month I’ll get inspired to try cooking some brownies without using the box recipe. The point is, try something new! I find that it always refreshes me and inspires me to be more creative. Also, I turned 30 and have knee pain when it rains. So that’s new, too.

Blogger Burnout

30th birthday, also Yeosu. You thought I was joking about the giant unicorn pool inflatable? Also, June is still way too cold for swimming.


Thoughts?

I’m going to be honest with you: I don’t know when this hiatus is going to end. Forgive us if we don’t write again for another week. We are in the middle of Season 3 of Orange is the New Black and Ruby Rose is the most attractive 30-year-old Australian woman I have ever seen. She probably doesn’t get knee pain when it rains. Anyway, be patient, we will get back into the swing of things.

In the meantime, what are your thoughts? Does full time blogging just come easily to you, or do you find yourself dreaming of moving to rural Canada where WiFi, cable TV, decent weather, and other people don’t exist just to get away from the grip technology has on you?

 


STEPHANIE

 

10 Comments

  1. Helena June 27, 2017 at 10:44 pm - Reply

    That unicorn is awesome. (My knee has been bothering me too, but then, I’m 46! Hoping I can get some help for it before our Korea trip, since we’re going to be doing lots of walking and at least a little hiking.)

    I used to blog pretty regularly and it did often feel like a chore. I still have stuff I want to catch up on but I’m not overly stressed about it.

    • Hedgers Abroad June 28, 2017 at 8:38 am - Reply

      When blogging becomes a chore I just don’t want to do it. Writing is supposed to be fun or else why are we even doing it?! Whats on the itinerary for your Korea trip?

      • Helena July 4, 2017 at 10:17 am

        A few days in Seoul, then a road trip starting in Yeosu (I’ve been wanted to see Hyangilam since I first found out about it), and winding up in Pohang. Also planning to do three days in Ulleungdo if it works out.

  2. journalofnomads June 27, 2017 at 10:55 pm - Reply

    Oh waw Stephanie, thanks so much for your honesty! We can relate so much at the moment (maybe it’s that time of the year?!) I already told Niko a few times I wanted to throw my laptop out the window (which I know I would regret…) but juggling with full-time teaching online, working on a few paid projects, preparing for our journey through Central Asia, blogging and keeping our social media updated, well, we’re starting to hit a wall too. I think it’s time for us to catch up with the new season of Sense8 😉 I haven’t written in my journal in a long time and you actually inspired me to grab that pen and just write (or doodle) down anything that comes to my mind without having to publish it. Oh, and treat Niko to a delicious meal for which I really took the time to research the recipe and cook it 🙂 Enjoy this break guys! You won’t lose us as followers, viewers and readers anyway 😉 Happy Birthday by the way and that unicorn rocks!! 🙂

    • Hedgers Abroad June 28, 2017 at 8:53 am - Reply

      It was a long time coming for a bit of honesty and real talk haha. I too have nearly thrown my laptop out of the window many times and when you find yourself arguing with an inanimate object, you know it’s time to put it down before you actually do what you are threatening. It would feel amazing, but then… regret. Even if you just take a week off, you’ll find a higher tolerance for the extra stuff. The Danish have a word for seeking out moments of comfort and well being, “hygge” (pronounced hooga. Also, who comes up with the spelling for these things?) and honestly with how happy those people are despite the unbearable amounts of freezing-ass cold weather they have for literally the entire year, I think they might just be on to something. It’s all about taking your time to enjoy life and seek out moments of well being and happiness. So yeah, go binge watch Sense8 and eat all the food and don’t check your phone! #NOREGRETS!

  3. Jeff June 28, 2017 at 7:20 am - Reply

    My dear, dear Stephanie,
    My Kindle died a happy death, my laptop spends most of its time in a closet, and when I carry my cell phone, I tend to wash and dry it with dirty clothes. I do occasionally get online and try to catch up with the world (I just read Ryan’s Father’s Day message, then deleted 2500 unimportant emails). I tend not to comment on blogs, although I can certainly understand the need for feedback. Enjoy the break. Blogging should be fun if you are going to blog (and I certainly enjoy them). Most importantly, feel the love that this poor communicator has for you both.
    Jeff (Dad)

    • Hedgers Abroad June 28, 2017 at 9:01 am - Reply

      You do you, Jeff! (But maaaybe write a note on the top of the washing machine to remember to check pockets of pants. Ryan should have a note too, but for tissues. The hundreds of tiny pieces of paper stuck to all our clothing has become waaay too commonplace. The man has a problem.) Sorry for the rambling parenthetical… also, Happy Father’s Day! If you read this. Which you may not as your laptop and/or phone may currently be in the washing machine. Love you <3

  4. Jeff June 28, 2017 at 7:27 am - Reply

    Damn! I just realized I missed your birthday! When I see you next, we must celebrate all the events we didn’t get to celebrate together….Happy Birthday, dear Stephanie! (I’m so ashamed of myself)

    • Hedgers Abroad June 28, 2017 at 9:03 am - Reply

      It’s quite alright. I bought a giant unicorn inflatable and now everything is good in the world.

  5. Kristen June 29, 2017 at 11:30 pm - Reply

    Hey S + R,
    Kristen and Will here. We’re definitely not bloggers and don’t know the etiquette, but we always enjoy your posts. Apologies for not saying hello and thank you before. Thanks for always posting fun content. Enjoy your break and write about what you care about! 💜💜💜hope to see you in another random city soon! You’re always welcome in Tokyo!

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