If your blog is about you, then what are you about?

Personal blogs are all fine and good, but if you actually want people to read them, they’ve got to have a focus. There are people who read this blog just because it’s mine, and I’m very glad they do, but that’s a very small community. If you want your blog to appeal to anyone beyond your friends and family, then it’s got to be “about” something.

I’ve never been very good at this aspect of blogging. I usually treat this blog as a place to speak my mind, and I tend to resist the idea of squeezing myself into a niche. I know a lot of what I post won’t appeal to people who don’t know me personally, and I treat that fact as the price I pay for not putting myself in a box.

But deep down, I’ve always wanted this blog to be about something. And since it’s ultimately about me, the real question is “What am I all about?”

As you may know, I’ve already tried to answer this question. I’ve chosen five priorities for the current year, and I’ve committed to spending most of my time working on them. I’ve also thought about what it means to commit to those goals, and how my daily life ought to look when I do.

So why not think about blogging in terms of those goals? If this blog is about me, and these are my priorities, then shouldn’t my blog reflect that?

Let’s say I were to treat these priorities as blog categories. Hell, let’s say I were to commit to posting in one of these categories each weekday. Before long, the bulk of my blogging would align with one of the following five topics:

  • Family, friends and my commitment to them. Cool things friends and family are doing. Lessons learned through parenting. The occasional cute baby anecdote.
  • Developing career strengths and talents. Posts that advance the work I do. Posts that might help you advance the work you do.
  • Developing my creative strengths and talents. News on current events and projects. Posts that grow business and creative ventures. Ideas about new directions. Opportunities for people like you to share ideas and get involved.
  • Working for social change. News about current issues and campaigns. Invitations to share your thoughts and ideas. Calls to action galore.
  • Improving and taking care of myself. Thoughts on health, productivity and personal growth. Encouragement and support for people trying to grow themselves. Occasional unrelated nonsense for the sake of taking a break from the usual content.

Half of the value in identifying these priorities is being able to say when you’re not fulfilling them. If I’m spending a lot of time on things that don’t contribute to at least one of these goals, then I’m not spending my time wisely. Likewise, if I’m spending a lot of time blogging about things that don’t fit into one of these five categories, then I’m blogging without focus.

There’s still a lot of room to move within this broad list of topics. Homing in on these categories will hopefully give my blog more focus, and will hopefully lead to less time staring at a blank screen, wondering what to write. I’ll be able to keep writing about these topics with my own voice and from my own perspective, but also with a little more confidence that people who don’t know or care who I am can still get something out of what I’m writing.

I’m going to give it a try, and if you’ve got a blog of your own, I hope you’ll do the same. Put some thought into what you’re all about, and then think about how to make your blog reflect that. While you’re at it, post a link to your blog in the comments, so we can all check it out.

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