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BlogTalk: Balance

by - Thursday, August 02, 2012

Today's topic is one I admit I struggle with...

Having been at this blogging thing now for over five years now, I often wonder how long I can keep it up. Do I want to keep up with the demands of regular posting? Do I still have things I need to say? Is it still fun or is it mostly work? Not to mention the downside of blogging... how it takes up A LOT of your time from family, friends, and other areas of your life. Or how it can make you envious of others with their more beautiful houses, perfect families, and popular blogs.

Blogging and the whole online world in general - Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook - has a way of extending its tentacles, immersing itself into your everyday. Do you ever feel like you've been "missing out" on something if you haven't been online for a few days, few hours? I do sometimes. And I hate that I feel that way because real life happens here in front of me and I could be missing it while I have my head buried in my iPhone.

How do you balance it all? Blogging, parenting, working? Sometimes you need to step back and reassess where you're spending the hours of this one precious life we've each been given. I've had a few changes come my way lately, changes in partnerships, new priorities - each one forcing me to ask myself, Where Do I Want To Be?

I've taken on a new and exciting challenge, one I am extremely passionate about, and I can't wait to share all the details with you. But that means other things have to give and I'm not sure what will be on that list. No lessons from me on this topic. I'm still trying to figure it all out. But maybe you have - figured it all out, I mean. Do you have a good balance in your life, online and offline? Are you where you want to be?

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23 comments

  1. With a new baby, I'm finding it impossible to keep up.  However, I don't want to quit blogging because I love the community and it's fun to share my thoughts and projects with a virtual group of friends.  The balance is hard.  I'm just glad that I don't do advertising or 'review' posts (at least not often) because I don't ever want my blog to be a job or something I have to do, it's just fun for me.  

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  2. Helen1:00 PM

    This is a fantastic post, Jen. I struggle with balance EVERY day. It's so difficult to maintain a healthy perspective when we live in a world that is saturated with images and highly edited glimpses into other people's lives. I always remind myself that the pins and posts I'm jealous of are just moments in time and not a full portrait of a life that is somehow better than mine. This article describes it well http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/22/magazine/pinterest-tumblr-and-the-trouble-with-curation.html?_r=3&pagewanted=1. 

    I love your blog,and I hope you keep writing - at your own healthy pace.

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  3. This is such a great post Jen. Thank u for sharing your thoughts with us about this topic. We started our blog b/c  we really want to show others how we live a fun and "budget friendly" lifestyle while trying to save for 'bigger' and better things. 

    It IS really difficult to juggle between so many priorities and we are just taking it day by day while learning all of "this". You and handy man are such great mentors for us 'young couples'. We love your blog! Keep doing your thing girl!

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  4. Renee1:04 PM

    I really struggle with balance. I recently made some changes about my blog to help me gain some balance in my life. Some weeks are easier than others and some weeks I just want to give it all up to have a 'normal' life again. I'm still trying to figure it all out too but it's nice to know we are not alone in this :)

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  5. Coffee with Julie1:05 PM

    Truth! The balance thing is a struggle. If it was *only* blogging, I'd probably feel fine about it -- it's my hobby and doesn't take up too much time. But it's the spiral of twitter, and other reading other blogs, and keeping up with the more technical type of maintenance of the blog ... it keeps adding up and adding up and I am actively seeking out solutions! 

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  6. ramblingrenovators1:05 PM

    I know! And the more your blog grows, the more time it requires to maintain it and fill it with content. When you figure out the solution, let me know ;)

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  7. Autumn@fallfordesign.com1:05 PM

    For my family and I, time is there but money isnt. I spend a pot of time designing for various websites just to pay thr minimum bills. We live with 25k a year and if I did work, we wouldn't be able toafford daycare. I would live to post more on my blog but there isnt anymoney to invest inptojects. As for my husband? We dont spend anytime outside the house. No money, and ive been crippled for months. Times are extremely difficult when I hurt so much that I cant walk.

    Good luck. You'll figure out whats best for you, orwhat your family allows extra time for. They come first. :)

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  8. ramblingrenovators1:05 PM

    Sorry to hear about what a tough spot you're in Autumn. Its a difficult balance isn't it, balancing wants and needs. You're right though - family always comes first :)

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  9. barbara@hodge:podge1:05 PM

    Fabulous post. It is something that all of us with families struggle with I am sure! I find it is easier to sit on the couch than get up and move. I have found that with blogging my fitness levels have decreased as I spent the time reading/writing posts instead of MOVING! 

    I can't wait to hear about your new adventure! 

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  10. ramblingrenovators1:05 PM

    Yes, yes, yes. I think I need to find a blogger boot camp to get me off the couch ;)

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  11. Ahhhh...the balance. It is such a personal thing - what balance is from one person to the next. So you have to do what is best for you. When I read Cup of Jo's "Finding the balance" posts - I thought many of those women don't have balance - they are working all day, putting kids to bed, and then working at night. Many blogging moms work on their blogs at night which I get but then I wonder when are they spending any time with their...husband? Lindsay's post about giving up on the partnership resonated with me. She too was staying up late working and was feeling overwhelmed and I understood why she needed to give that up. My sister in law decided to do her MBA while her children were really young and needed her and I saw what that did to them. She will tell you now she doesn't know if it was worth it.
    For me balance is getting up before dawn to do the things that I want to do - go for a run, blog, read blogs. But when the day really starts I need to go to work and be there for my family. I don't want to be a mom who brings her phone to the park to keep up on twitter. One day I will have way to much time for those kinds of personal activities and I don't want to feel like I wasn't there for the important things. That is how I find my balance. Not always succeeding but I try.

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  12. ramblingrenovators1:05 PM

    You sound like you're in a good spot Tara. I hope to find that soon too.

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  13. ramblingrenovators1:05 PM

    I remember that time so well... but let's face it, the blog just can't compete when there's new baby smell to inhale and smother with kisses ;)

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  14. Lovely post Jen.
    I definitely DO NOT have this figured out. I find my balancing act is always shifting...like I'm moving priorities around constantly, doing what I can to have healthy approach to both on-and-off-line living. 

    The biggest improvement I've made is restructuring my work so that I now give myself one or two days a week to work on my own stuff...whatever that may be. Sometimes it's freelance design and writing work, sometimes its blogging or personal photography, and sometimes just errands or better yet Family time. 

    It's making a world of a difference. Hope you are able to find that comfy spot in balancing blogging with living. xo

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  15. ramblingrenovators1:05 PM

    I need to do a bit more of that Amy. I really need to be a bit more structured and deliberate with my time... then maybe I won't feel so behind with everything! So good to hear its working for you.

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  16. absolutely!! very well said Jimmy! I feel exactly the same and how this fulfilling fun adventure walks the fine line between leisure or scheduled deadlines.  There is never enough time and sometimes we just have to step back to think about what is what important to us at the moment.  

    Jen, you are doing a phenomenal job in balancing family life with a young kid, blogging with exceptional content and images, and inspirational ideas for us all.  

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  17. ramblingrenovators1:05 PM

    Thanks Tim. You are always so supportive!

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  18. ramblingrenovators1:05 PM

    You know what's cool? Readers like you. I appreciate your spending some part of your day here on the blog.

    I completely agree with you about time. So much I want to do!

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  19. ramblingrenovators1:05 PM

    Thanks for that Helen :)

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  20. thebookofjimmy1:05 PM

    You are not alone.  It's a constant struggle.  

    It's tough enough to balance work and life when work is just something you do for a living.  But when work is something you live for - and I get the feeling that most successful bloggers really do live for this stuff - well then finding that balance becomes all the more difficult.  

    My early thinking when I started blogging: the more interesting things I do, see, experience, build, cook, etc, then the more interesting things I'll be able to write about, then the more people would enjoy reading and the more I would want to continue doing new interesting things that I could blog about.  It would be the perfect reinforcing cycle of life.  Except there is that one little detail: time.  And it is quite limited.  

    I don't know though.  I think that is life's biggest irony.  So many amazing, wonderful things to do and experience, and only enough time for so many of them.  

    Here's my compliment to you:  All that being said - limited time, unlimited interesting things to experience, etc - we all keep coming back to read your stuff and follow your blog.  You're doing something right, and the same goes for anyone who can keep even the most modest of readerships.  How cool is that?  

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  21.  I find that I'm choosing family over blogging more on these fast moving summer days... since my youngest is starting kindergarten and I know that I can never get these days back I'm trying to cherish each one. I know that bloggers understand the constant shift of "balance" and they'll understand my lack of presence more than my kids will! I'm curious to see what you've got on your plate now! :) Hope you're having a great summer Jen!

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  22. This is such a great post Jen. Thank u for sharing your thoughts with us about this topic. We started our blog b/c we really want to show others how we live a fun and "budget friendly" lifestyle while trying to save for 'bigger' and better things. 

    It IS very difficult (but we're learning it as it is going along) to fit everything into your daily schedule. You and handy man are such great models for young couples like us and we absolutely adore your blog! Keep doing your thing girl :) 

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  23. This is a great topic to discuss about. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us! We started doing our blog b/c we really want to let other people know how we live a fun but "budget friendly" life style as a young couple, trying to save up for bigger and better things. 

    Its so difficult to juggle and fit everything into our daily schedule but we are both trying to learn this as it is going along. We absolutely adore your blog. You and handy man are such great mentors for young couples like us :) Keep doing your thing girl! 

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