Friday 20 May 2016

An ode to mediocrity

I have been mediocre all my life. I am 5'6", with size 8 feet, clothing size S/M, medium brown hair and an overall appearance that doesn't attract attention. 
There was a time during my teens when I tried to change that by dying my hair red and getting my tongue pierced, which of course made me even more mediocre. Not that I knew it at the time - I was smug in my belief that I was a rebel and stood out. Standing out against the boring old people of course - I was desperate to fit in with the people I deemed "cool". If I ever did I will never know - I suspect I was just one of the many, unremarkable enough to disappear in the crowd, never one to stand out. 

I was mediocre in school, always amongst the top 20 (30?)%, never on the bottom, but certainly never on the top.  
Now that I have been blogging for three years, I can see that this trend is not going to change. I have a very small, loyal following (I love you guys!!), and I have been growing - at a snail's pace. 
I have asked myself many times why that is. 

Am I not promoting myself enough? Definitely not, I SUCK at promoting myself.
Am I not analyzing "what works and what doesn't"? Guilty as charged. 
Am I not using my blog strategy correctly? Bahahaha, what blog strategy!?

On second thought, it's no big mystery why I'm staying small. 
If you read blog advice and motivational quotes and career advice, they always tell you that you have to "think big to become big", "dress for the job you want, not the job you have", and to "push your limits and step out of your comfort zone". All sage advice, I'm sure. 

But here is the thing: Being mediocre has its benefits. 
First off, it's pretty stress-free. There are no haters. So far I only had a hater once, but he/she chose to stay anonymous (shocker), and as soon as I disabled the option of commenting as an anonymous person, the hater was gone. It is a sad reality of fame and success that the better known you become, the more creeps will start coming out of the woodworks. They mostly don't bother with small potatoes like myself, and that's a-okay with me.

Another benefit is that you can take a few days off if you feel like it, and don't feel guilty about it. Some people thrive under pressure, but I'm not one of them. As soon as I start putting too many expectations on myself, I get a rash in an unfortunate spot, a sure sign that I'm stressed. That rash is itchy, and it's not in an area that you can scratch in public without causing raised eyebrows. 

I also feel free to mess up on here, make mistakes and contradict myself, sure in the knowledge that few will notice or care.

Mediocrity gives me the mental freedom to try things out, play around with different formats and concepts, and not worry about staying "true to my brand". I don't have a brand. I'm just one of millions of girls who likes to express herself, who wants to find out who she is and what she is all about. 

There are so many blogging rules to follow, mistakes to avoid, times when you are supposed to post on social media, reasons why you have to have Snapchat, need to write a newsletter, give your readers "great content". It's all important if you want to grow and gather thousands of followers, but to me? It's exhausting. And it takes the fun out of it.
I like to sit down whenever the mood strikes me, and write about whatever rattles around in my head that day. Blogging for fun is just that - fun

Wanting to create an online business and become "blog-famous" is something most of us probably dreamed about, and I'm no exception. But I learnt that it's not only a ton of hard work, but also the kind of work I don't like doing. Self-promotion makes me terribly self-conscious, and takes so much time away from what I love doing: Taking pictures, writing little stories and working away on the projects I dream up for myself. 

So I guess I will stay mediocre, and you know what? It feels pretty damn good. 



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