Monday, January 14, 2013

Giving Up On My Dream

I have a secret. Ok, we all have secrets, I know. But this is a secret I want to share with you.
This blog is not just a blog to me. This is a part of a bigger dream that I have. When I started this 
blog I had no idea this dream was even inside of me. Seriously, no clue. 
I knew from seldom instances & opportunities that I liked to write, but I never really had the reason or opportunity in which I felt it was appreciated, so other than emails or facebook, I never really saw beyond that. When people would say I was funny or I should write a book, I thought to myself  
"Ummm, no...You want funny? Here is a funny facebook status for ya."
But as I begin to write, the intimate details of my mind pouring into my keyboard and out onto all of you,
 I realized how much I feel I have to say. Here is the thing, anything I say when I write, would not sound as funny or as heartfelt if I spoke it. At least I don't think so. Maybe I am wrong.
But I just love to write. I don't want my blog to just be a place where people just come to look at cute
pictures of my kids, or my awesome weekend...It's just not me. Although that is certainly part of it...

  I realize that people like a little variety and quite honestly fashion posts are way more popular than speaking the depths of my soul, and that sucks for a writer. I can put up a post of my brand new dress and get tons of traffic and then put up something where I let you  high dive straight into my heart and I end up losing followers. I will never really figure that out.  I'm guessing it's because I mentioned God...and people that followed me simply due to a giveaway didn't realize that I loved God so much? Who knows? But I realized when it comes down to it, I want readers more than I want followers. I want people to connect with me. I don't want people to unfollow me everytime I write something so deep and personal to me. It makes no sense to want followers that would end up unfollowing me one day due to the fact that they finally actually read something I wrote,
and realized they thought I sucked.
I am simply doing what I love to do. It comes natural for me. It's my passion. I want people to come to my blog to read, not just look at me, or look at my kids ...or skim through what I say. 
I am a writer. I'm really am trying to just face it. It is what it is.

That's what I do. I've had a hard time with it, because I do realize when I write,
it's something a person has to take time to read and it's simply not as popular as other types of blogs.
It's harder to digest in this day and age of the quick and the drive through and the microwave oven.
 But I am starting to come to terms with who I am and what my dream and vision is.
Not everyone's dream is the same, and that's ok. I'm not going to connect with everyone, and that's ok.
But, my dream is to write. If you are a reader and followed me because you like to read what I write or I inspired you or you just like me for some strange reason, then thats wonderful, but if you followed me because of a giveaway, I so appreciate it, but let it be known...I write. If you have been around my blog for awhile, you know this and you know how I write and what I write about.
And I don't always write short & sweet.
And I do write about God. And I do write sarcastically.
But the point is, I like to write.
After a year, I am finally starting to get over the "I'm going to unfollow you because you wrote something I didn't like" thing. And just starting to accept that everyone isn't going to love me, 
even when I know my heart is in the right place. I mean, at least I think I am...

Here's the thing: 
Because the blog world is made up of so many different kinds of people, it makes
it challenging to get out there and find those people that would connect with you. It makes it challenging to find people that will like what you do.
Giveaways and features are great for exposure, but sometimes, not so great that day when people find
out who you really are, what you really blog about. I'm not really sure how else to get my name
out there, but I am working on a) not caring so much b) trusting that God will bring the right people
by if I am diligent in doing what I am passionate about...writing.
This writing dream has suddenly and surprisingly become bigger than I care to admit. Like book writing big...and I simply don't feel qualified .

So I tend to back away from writing all together, because like I said, my heart wrenching, thought provoking posts don't get the feedback I wish for and I start to think that if people can't make it through a post I write, how will I ever get people to read a book I write, so what's the point of spilling my heart...??
and on with the outfit post!
Have YOU ever felt like that?

But I KNOW KNOW KNOW that is wrong thinking. I KNOW it. Because I know that gift is
inside of me , not to mention I want it so badly. And if I am so passionate about it, there is a reason.
If my mind is always spinning and turning and toiling over something I want to spill onto my
keyboard, then there must be a reason for it. And that reason is that God placed it there.

All of our dreams, all our passions are truly God given. And SO many times our dreams seem so much bigger than us. That's why we call it a dream, right? It's off in the distance somewhere, for
somebody else to do. Surely I could never do this. I am just a mom...just a wife...I like messing
around with graphics and writing here and there on my blog, but no one reads it...
or at least that is the thought process Satan feeds me. SO instead of listening to my God given
passion and desire. I listen to the lies about myself and quit. At least in my heart I quit.
But every dream takes work right. Every dream takes a tremendous amount of time and rejection and
giving up, right?
Can you imagine what would have happened if Joseph gave up when he was thrown in prison? Or if Moses gave up because the Egyptians kept out doing him with their sorcery? Or if Sarah gave up because she was 90 years old?
Or if David gave up because Saul tried to kill him?
The great things these every day men and women did were birthed out of passion for God and
passion for God's will to be in particular instances. If Moses would have said "Screw it, here I am trying to help my people out of slavery and they don't even like me," then I wonder what would have
happened. Sure he got mad, smashed the 10 commandments, but that is part of the frustration of
obstacles planted in the path of our dreams.
I'm just learning to protect my heart. Those things that cause me to want to back away from my
dream. Those dumb little things that I do, or that I cared so much about that weigh down  & fizzle out my passion, and make me feel like I'm not getting through to anyone.
I am learning to step away to protect myself from those things.
How am I to be effective EVER if I am feeding on negative??
Friends, I would encourage you to protect yourself from the lies that this world tries to
feed you. If it makes you feel that you can't do it, no one cares...then don't feed on it...
Those lies that you feed on will tear the life out of you and if you have no life, how can you be effective?
If staring at numbers make you feel less than adequate, then stop looking.
Know that your dreams, and my dreams are there for a reason.
And they have the ability to affect someone...if even just one person... God still placed it
inside of you for this reason.

I li nked up with the MONDAY MEET Up over at Covered In GRACE  



Dara said...

beautifully written. I have always wanted to be a writer too. I guess that's why I like to write on my blog. but I haven't begun to put my whole true self out there yet, it's too nervewracking!

Lindsay said...

I hear you, my friend! I've always been "that writer" -- I had a book published at 17, and to me, this blog is my writing career. A place to spill my guts and just WRITE again. I don't know how many people really like to READ that much when I do spill my heart out. I don't have the same religion as you, but you mentioning God or what you believe would never, ever bother me. I adore your blog and your writing so very much -- keep on doing it! <3

Sue said...

It's so hard to let go of the "numbers" and focus in the writing. I feel the same way, when I write from the heart no one reads it. When I post recipes or outfits they get lots of love. But when it comes right down to it, I'd much rather write from the heart! I love your writing journey and I'm excited to see where it takes you.

The Remodeled Life said...

Just came across your blog! I so enjoyed reading this. I appreciate bloggers who write and share their hearts so much! Thanks for sharing, this definitely lifted my spirits tonight. God is good.

Cat said...

This has to be one of my all time favorite blog post I have ever read..simply beautiful. You have an amazing GOD GIVEN talent to write and I love how you give Him the glory! Keep doing what you are doing!! You are an inspiration to myself!

chelsea beeswax said...

You don`t find blogs under categories like you do books. Which is both bad and good.

BAD, because you get a wide range of people on your blog. Some come to read, some come for the stuff, some come to laugh, some come for insight, and all the in-between. Pleasing all of them would be impossible!

The GOOD, is that if/when you write a book, it will be under a specific category and people seeking it out will be looking for exactly that. So don`t put all your eggs in the blog basket! The internet is a way tougher crowd.

TicoTina said...

yes. just, yes. =)

Cody Doll said...

Don't ever give up! It was because of you and finding this blog that inspired me to write by coming up Tuesday post. You helped me realize that it's okay to write what you feel, even if it a longer post. You helped me realize that is okay to be me on my blog and it's okay if you change your name on your blog (up-coming Tuesday's post).

I thought I would share how much you inspired me to continue writing. So much that I chose my word for this year to be "write". It isn't about the number that follow you but the number that reads your post. The ones that care. I know that I will keep reading your blog post, no matter how long. =]


Kristine -Heart Shaped Sweat said...

Beautifully written. I'm so glad God placed this on your heart. You were meant to have these thoughts reflected somewhere but maybe you didn't know the impact they might have on so many others. Your post comes at a great time for me. Words like fizzle, dreams, comparisons, passions all resonate. It's comforting to read of another bloggers experiences in www. I appreciate this post and all your writings!

Rachel said...

Writing is my passion too--and I've noticed a million times that while my outfit posts get dozens of comments and views--the posts that I'm most proud of, that contain the most clever writing in my opinion--are often ignored. I've mostly come to the conclusion that if I write the way I've been gifted to write, I'm not destined to be "popular" in the eyes of the world at all, and that's how it should be.
I dream of writing a book too--we'll just have to see where life takes us, but don't give up on writing, Julie! God gives gifts for you to use them and to bless others with them. Even if it's only one person--that's a lot!

Alyson McMahon said...

I love that you WRITE. There aren't a whole lot of blogs out there that actually post "writing". And, I love your writing.. I LOVE that you're sarcastic and it's so obvious that it's a passion of yours. Please don't ever stop, ok? xo

Amanda said...

I came to the exact same place last July! You got it girl - keep writing!

And P.S. - you're gorgeous!

Laurel Martinez said...

Oh Julie - how I needed to hear this today, Monday. I am in the exact same boat and I get so frustrated! I enjoy every minute I spend here and love how openly you share your heart! I as a reader will try and be better about comment

Angela Paris said...

what an awesome post! i'm a new follower here (found you through the ad space giveaway) and am loving your honesty. i'll be back again soon for sure :) happy monday!!

Mrs Hurley said...

Well you do inspire me!! I love your honesty and heart. I find that I am similar. I have a very sarcastic side, which means I'm also very tender hearted and fragile. I have always had a hard time keeping girlfriends. You are doing great!!

Jana Faith said...

I completely LOVED this post. I enjoy when you pour your heart out and share the love of Jesus. I feel blessed from reading your blogs. It's funny because you once mentioned being and sarcastic in "real life" and it surprised me but in a positive way. I feel like I tend to be drawn to sarcastic personalities even though that's totally the opposite of who I am. Keep sharing and the ones who need to hear it will. Love you, sister.

Kristina Streeter said...

Don't ever stop writing. This is so beautifully written, and I understand totally where you are coming from the quickest posts with the least amount of heart get far more attention that I pour my heart into and it gets discouraging, I totally get it. I've had my blog since 2007 and I have way more followers than bloggers that have been blogging a year or two. I used to let it bother me but the truth is, Im learning that's OK. I want my blog to be a reflection of my heart and I'm still learning how to put it all out there.

You go girl, God has put a passion in your heart and its a beautiful thing! Keep doing YOU!

Vicki said...

Why is this so true? I can totally relate, and some days it has made me question why I continue blogging. I guess the answer is because we do it mostly for ourselves, but it is frustrating when you pour yourself into a post and you get next to no response, and then you do a DIY project or an outfit post and there are heaps of comments. So glad you wrote this because I have been feeling the same way lately. Over christmas I really contemplated giving up, but it's the only thing I really do for myself, so I'm sticking with it!

Some blogs I do visit just for the pretty pictures (because that's what the blog is about), but most I visit because I like to read about other peoples jounrney's. Keep with it, please!

Kristine Foley said...

Totally took your cue and just wrote yesterday. Even tho it wasn't all rainbows and unicorns it was SO liberating. I need to do it more often! Love you beautiful friend!

Kristine from The Foley Fam {unedited} Blog

AbsoluteMommy said...

I started AbsoluteMommy almost 2 years ago because I just wanted to write. And for almost a year I did just that in my little corner of the world with just about 50 followers. Last year I started 2012 with the idea that the more followers that i had the more readers I would have. It's simply not the truth.
I value all the feed back I get on my blog. These days comments mean much more to me than followers... Because comments are feedback and that means that people are reading.
It's easy to get lost in followers and giveaways and promotion... But don't let that sway your writing. Write. Every day. Maybe you won't always hit publish, maybe you will. But keep writing.
I, like you, am a writer. From the tips of my toes to the top of my head. It will never change. There is always a story in my mind and in my heart. And so I go on and I tell it.
Keep doing you. Sometimes you may write something someone doesn't want to hear, but you may just write what someone does want to hear... And you've just put it into words for them. Those are the successes.
You may write a book, you may not, but you do have a story to tell. So tell it. Don't be afraid of whats in you heart... Be afraid of the when it gets to quiet.
Just keep writing.

Erica said...

Wow, gorgeous!
Erica xo

Kelly said...

We have the same heart girl. You just speak to me EVERY TIME! My Mary Kay National Sales Director gave a speech on seminar stage that spoke to me in a way I was forever changed. It reminded me like this does it is an insult to God to ignore those dreams placed inside our hearts. She said someone told her, "Your dreams are from God! Where do you think they are from!?!?!" And it's SO TRUE!!! We honor him by living out our God given dreams b/c they are his will and his BEST for our lives! We can't see the end but as we follow that path and pray through that path to honor Him whatever happens along the way or wherever that path ends it will be for His glory.

Brooke @ Covered in Grace said...

We have the same dream, girl. I want so badly to write and use my gifts and passion for further his purpose. I want so badly to write book after book that people will want to so many different genres.

But I've not really acted on it like I should have, or want to.. I know it's because I've been buying into the lies and the doubt.

My mind set is changing, however. I feel a wave of ACTION approaching me too.

And p.s. I'm not anywhere near as funny/eloquent/long-winded in person. I sound more like Rachel from Friends when I talk. Ha!

Terésa Marie said...

Please do not feel discouraged by those who have left your blog because they discovered that you love God, or that you love to write. For those two things just drew me to you in a way nothing else could. I connected with this post, so deeply and have just been won over as a new follower. I also struggle with the conuncrum of heart wrenching posts eliciting very little by way of comments or traffic, but light fluffy life posts driving people to me. I guess I've come to decide that as long as I'm faithful and willing to share the Lord will use that to plant seeds that I cannot see.
Tomorrow I'm writing about what I thought it meant to be a writer, and what I am now forcing myself to hold onto. I hope you will stop by, it's a humble beginning, but hey, you've got to start somewhere right?

In Christs love,

Taylor @ Pink Heels Pink Truck said...

Being on WordPress has changed the numbers game for me. I was never in it for the numbers, but I used it to follow my reach to people. With GFC, it's not a simple process to go in and unfollow takes some time (although some people figure it out, obviously). But when you request people follow you with an email subscription, when they unfollow you via email subscription, it sends you a nice little email saying so and so unsubscribed and gives you their email address. I've been tempted to write to them saying, I'm sorry to see you go...obviously you were only following me to enter a giveaway, cause that's the mandatory entry. But then that's really below the belt, and it's not a reader that I want either. You don't want to read me, then I don't want to read you. ;) I want to engage with those that want to engage me. I want to nurture those that take time to read the randomness coming out of my head. Those are the people that mean something to me and my blog. Loved this post, Julie! Keep it up! Your loyal readers love you for who you are!

Sarah said...

"Better to have a short life that is full of what you like doing, than a long life that is spent in a miserable way." ~ Alan Watts

I was re-reading this post because it really struck a chord with me. And judging from the comments, I'm not the only one. You're doing awesome!

deb said...

I love this post. I just discovered you because I googled 'slam books' and you were a lucky discovery. I love reading writing like yours... heartfelt and true! :)

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