How I Fight Blogging Jealousy | Lunch-Time Librarian

How I Fight Blogging Jealousy

In the spirit of including more personal blog posts, I figured that today I would discuss something that comes up a lot in the blogging community. And that’s jealousy. I will admit, I run rampant with jealousy.

The ‘I’ve only just started, things will pick up’ reasoning

When I first started blogging it was easier to fight off jealousy because, of course, I was just started out and so it was to be expected that I wouldn’t have as many followers or comments as someone who had been doing it for years. Except that didn’t last for long. About a month after I started blogging I noticed a new book blog pop-up that was beautiful! I was jealous of everything from the website design to the blog post format. Hell, I was even jealous of the blogger’s profile picture. But what got me what the number of comments and followers she already had. And that just about killed my ‘I haven’t been blogging for long enough’ reasoning.

there's hope

The ‘maybe I’m not posting the right content’ excuse

But I moved on. And I decided to start interacting with this particular blogger and trying to learn from them. This is how I came to realize that CommentLuv might be a better commenting system than Disqus regarding gathering readers. It was also how I came to start participating in Top Ten Tuesday, of which I did ultimately drop off. But I tried! And for that period, I was all right, but of course, jealousy reared its ugly head again. This time, it was when I was visiting a blog that I, and I’m being honest here, felt didn’t look nearly as snazzy as mine. And yet, they have a lot more post engagement than I had ever had. This is where resentment and inadequacy entered the mix. I both simultaneously felt my content must be absolute crap, and felt resentment towards a blogger of whom I felt at least somewhat superior. Which I know is terrible, but jealousy is an ugly emotion for a reason. But just like before I thought, ‘okay, I’ll learn from this person’ and I started debating posting more engaging content and lists vs. reviews.

jada pinkett sass

The ‘how nice to have so much free time’ superiority complex

In the beginning, I was posting maybe 3 or so blog posts every week and struggling to keep up with Top Ten Tuesday, insert my own Quote Day Thursday, and then have a review ready every single week. I started looking at other blogs that seemed to be posting at all times and wanted to throw my hands up like ‘who has time for all that?’ And that is where I developed a new jealousy coping mechanism. I have a full-time job and a one hr commute, how could I possibly compete with teenage book bloggers who must obviously have TONS of free time on their hands. I mean, it’s kind of a miracle that I’m posting this much anyway. Right? Except no. Teens have homework, classes, extracurriculars, and trying to smash a social life in on top of it. Even people with stay-at-home careers may end up having just as much time to blog as I do after they finish their to-do list for the day. I’m not the only one making time for my hobby, and so that complex died a quick death.

good for you

The ‘it honestly doesn’t matter what I do, so I’m just gonna do me’ inadequacy circle

Now I had fewer posts so that I could have a more lax schedule, more engaging material, and changed up my website design. I had done as much as I felt I could do, and saw some improvement in my engagement. Which I was happy with, at the time. Then I realized that the peak engagement I had reached was still small compared to others. Should I pay a huge chunk of cash for that Pinterest course? Did I need to re-examine my content? Except I didn’t want to do any of that. To be honest, I felt defeated. I still loved blogging and interacting with the small base of commenters I had, but I felt like certain things were suddenly beyond me. I wouldn’t ever have a viral post. No one would ever mention me in a link-up of ‘cool things bloggers posted this week.’ I wouldn’t ever have an email subscription list of 100+ subscribers. I felt down on myself, and my new way of coping was just to do whatever I wanted. If people commented, fine. If not, fine. And this would have been an excellent way to move past jealousy, except I was pretending not to want things I really did want. It matters to me if people comment on something I post. I don’t just blog for myself. I blog to engage with the community in a way that I, frankly, don’t engage with people in real life. And so I got caught in a circle pretending I didn’t care, feeling sad because I did care.

Daria - no life, no future

The ‘girl, you better work!’ mentality

And here we are in the present. I recently followed a blogger who I hadn’t heard about before, and assumed was rather new. Then I looked at their Twitter following and almost passed out. They had almost 10x the followers and had been blogging for less than half the time I had. And then I sat back and had a novel thought. I thought ‘yeah, that makes sense, they’re always tweeting and retweeting things.’ More than that, they were always tweeting to ask for help, and giving thoughtful blog comments, and visiting lots of blogs. And then came the big revelation. You get what you give. If I’m not visiting and commenting on a bunch of blogs, why would they be commenting on mine? If I’m not following 1000 people on Twitter, why would I have 1000 followers? If I’m not putting myself out there in the community, why would they come flocking to me? Maybe this seems like common sense, but I’ll be the first to admit that I’m rather self-centered. Call it only-child syndrome, but it is what it is. And he’s the new coping mechanism: I can’t be jealous of success I’m not working for. If you don’t work hard, you can’t expect results. And so my new goal for myself in blogging is to start making more effort to engage with the community and focus more on interaction and less on my success.

work work work

 

Blogging jealousy is a very real thing. We all get it at some point in blogging, and it is, unfortunately, a part of the experience. But I think what’s important it so always fight against it, and think about why you’re jealous, and how to transform it into something positive. Turn jealousy into admiration and learn something new from someone. Or burn it off working hard at getting better. But don’t let it compromise the enjoyment that comes from blogging.

What things have made you jealous of other bloggers? How did you get over it?

22 Comments

  • Krysta @ Pages Unbound

    December 13, 2016 at 1:48 am

    Whenever I read someone else’s blog I wonder how they have the time to make it so incredible or to read so many books! But we never really know what the other person’s life circumstances are, I guess. Your blog is pretty impressive, though. I’m sure we’re all wondering how you manage to make it look so good and find time to upload such great content!

    Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      December 15, 2016 at 9:43 am

      Hahaha I’m laughing because I haven’t blogged for at least a month before that BEA post so on my head it’s a hot mess lol. So agree with you on you never really know what the person thinks. But I definitely have the jealously of “when do you have time to read all these books?”

      Reply
  • Tasya

    June 2, 2016 at 12:30 am

    Blogging takes a lot of time and effort, so of course we would like our blog to be appreciated. And for me, the biggest appreciation is when someone commenting on my post. It’s like “hey somebody actually read this!” I agree with “you get what you give” thing. If we don’t reach out and put ourselves out in the community, then how they would know that we exists?? I’m really jealous with blogger that has gorgeous templates, like HOWWW??? I know most of them are custom made, which made me even more jealous of their coding skills XD What an honest post Liselle!<33
    Tasya recently posted…Spring Bingo ChecklistMy Profile

    Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      June 2, 2016 at 9:28 am

      It’s so true with commenting. In my head, I know that lurkers are a thing, but when someone comments you know that they not only read your stuff, but they cared enough to engage with the content. It’s a big confidence boost!

      Yup, it really is you get what you give. Especially in the book blogger community it’s a lot of book bloggers visiting other book blogs. Reciprocity feels a lot more important.

      Ohhh so true, it’s really hard to make a beautiful looking website. Even in terms of graphics and all that. I ended up doing like a month of coding classes at CodeAcademy.com which was super super helpful. And I paid like $9 for an intro month and its like $29 after that so I had good reason to power through the courses.

      Reply
  • Jenn @ Quite a Novel Idea

    May 15, 2016 at 8:22 pm

    What a great and honest post! Kudos to you and I think these are such natural feelings. Our blog is our love child. We put so much work into them so naturally we want them to be appreciated and it can suck when it seems they aren’t. I think I’m still in the “I’m new” stage. But hopefully these insights will help me to be proactive rather than reactive 🙂
    Jenn @ Quite a Novel Idea recently posted…Book Review: Everything, EverythingMy Profile

    Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      May 16, 2016 at 9:10 am

      Thank you! That’s such a fantastic way to put it, and it’s true. You bring up your blog from nothing and put all your hard work, and sometimes hard earned money, into it, so of course appreciation is important.

      I hope so too! Or at least more often proactive than reactive 🙂

      Reply
  • Katherine Livingston

    May 14, 2016 at 2:50 pm

    Excellent post! I 100% feel you on all of these points and I think they’re something we all deal with.

    I’ve been blogging for about half a year now and I have an average of two or three comments on each post. But I’m not discouraged yet, because I know I’m dong a lot of things wrong and I’m working to fix them Ex: Wix websites stink and my url is something atrocious. I’m also seriously considering moving to Comment Luv so I can go visit other blogs.

    I think, like you said, the key is to give a little to get a little. You get out what you put in. Great post! 😀
    Katherine Livingston recently posted…My Writing Kryptonite (and three steps I took to overcome it)My Profile

    Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      May 14, 2016 at 5:58 pm

      I haven’t had any experience with Wix, but I’m sorry it’s not the greatest. I use WordPress myself because I have enough of a handle on coding (CSS at least) and wanted a cheaper hosting option. But I hear that square space is great as a website/blog builder with included customer care.

      I would recommend comment luv for sure, I switched to it from Disqus because I wanted to see other blogs and give people a bit more incentive for commenting.

      And anyhow congratulations on blogging for half a year, as long as you keep on going you’re doing great. Thanks for visiting!

      Reply
  • Grace

    May 5, 2016 at 6:03 pm

    Oh man I get jealous still. Pretty much all your points too. I am awful at Twitter so I get jealous that I am not better at it. I try and I am just not good at following the chats and other stuff. Of course there is ARC envy but I get over that quickly. I just try to do the best I can. I do agree if you are more active with visiting and commenting it tends to help people come visit your blog. Great post!!

    Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      May 6, 2016 at 7:59 am

      It’s hard not to get jealous, and I don’t even know how people get good at Twitter, so you’re not alone. I look at 1000k followers, and I can barely fathom it. At least you get over the ARC envy quickly, though. You really can only do your best at what you can do. Which doesn’t prevent the jealousy happening always, but it’s the reality

      Reply
  • Tori @ InToriLex

    May 3, 2016 at 8:52 am

    This is a great Post!! It can be hard to put and keep things in perspective. But all of these were great things to keep in mind. And yes I been blogging for a while but have only recently been getting the views that I want. Just keep going consistency is key!!
    Tori @ InToriLex recently posted…April 2016 Wrap UpMy Profile

    Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      May 3, 2016 at 12:30 pm

      It’s true, it would be great if we could put little blinders on sometimes and keep in our own headspace. It would certainly make it easier to keep things in perspective.

      Totally agree! Just have to keep on going until you get the results you want 🙂

      Reply
  • Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

    May 2, 2016 at 3:39 am

    I felt like you when I first started blogging and even a few years into it but you know what? Looking at certain bloggers and investigating why they’re so popular actually made me improve my content and comment on other people’s blogs. Now I’m at the point where I don’t really care much about stats or followers, because I already reached my blogging goals and I’m satisfied with that. I also have a full time job and a big commute and I can’t work on my blog 24/7 like other people may do. I hope you find that happy medium!
    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence recently posted…Indulgence Insider #52 – We’ve Got Some Busy Weeks Ahead!My Profile

    Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      May 2, 2016 at 8:22 am

      It’s true, the second you start investigating why someone is doing so well you get ideas for how to make your blog better. That’s kind of the joy of the community is that you keep learning and improving.

      That’s fantastic that you’ve reached your goals on top of a commute and full-time work. It really shows how making the time for blogging when you can, can still lead to great results.

      I hope so too!

      Reply
  • Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight

    May 1, 2016 at 11:44 pm

    Ah, I feel you. I seriously think I have gone through every single one of these stages! And I have to say, I *still* have no idea how someone who started blogging last weekend has 603 followers already haha. And I absolutely have talked myself through the “free time” thing over and over. I get SO jealous when people talk about watching a show on Netflix, or even just going out, because the only thing I ever do is take care of the kids, and blog in the tiny bit of leftover time when they’re asleep. But then I feel bad for even being so jealous, because it isn’t their fault!

    Let’s see, what do I get jealous of? ARC envy. I will admit it. Not because of the book itself even, just because I feel like I am never making any progress- and that it seems like an ARC (or even just communicating with publishers in general) is a step that kind of indicates that you’ve “leveled up” as a blogger.

    And I know everyone always says “oh, it should be fun, just do it for you”, but we’re human, and we are going to get jealous from time to time- which is why I LOVE your post so much. I love that you admit that it happens, and it’s okay, and that you just have to work through it. Because I know personally, I feel guilty when I get jealous, which in turn leads to me feeling even worse about it all! The struggle is real, my friend! FABULOUS post!
    Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight recently posted…Midnight Digest 3My Profile

    Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      May 2, 2016 at 8:20 am

      There’s clearly some sort of magic formula newbies are using that some of us missed out on haha. Though I admit I’ve noticed a HUGE correlation between how many people you follow and how many followers you have. I honestly have no idea how you can find time for blogging and work and kids. Serious respect. I don’t even have a pet and it’s hard to find free time.

      Yes! Like when I see people on Instagram with their book haul and like half of the books are ARCs that screams ‘serious book blogger’. I imagine it’s even harder still if you requested the same book from the publisher and didn’t get it.

      Thank you! And it’s true you do hear people saying that all the time, the just enjoy it line. But when you put all this effort into your blog, you want the sort of feedback that validates the work you’re doing. So jealousy happens. I ALWAYS feel guilty about it. Especially because the people I get jealous of are bloggers that are amazing whose content I really love to read. The struggle is very real haha

      Reply
  • Cait @ Paper Fury

    April 30, 2016 at 4:35 am

    I totally get what you mean!! I DO. And I think all bloggers get jealous from time to time, right?! I was following an instagram account recently that was really new and awesome and I was like “ooh they totally deserve more followers than this!” and then…like oh 3 months later? THEY HAD LIKE 10,000+ AND WELL OKAY THEN. XD I admit to jealousy! But I entirely agree with what you said here with the: “You get what you give.” <— YES. Absolutely. We never know how much behind-the-scenes work a blogger is putting in. It usually seems effortless on the outside but NOPE. It's rarely that simple. And I think it does take time and a lot of work. I often get about 40 comments on a post and this is from 2 years of networking incessently. *dies a little of exhaustion* Definitely wasn’t easy for me. So I assume a lot of us struggle with networking.
    BTW I ADMIRE YOU BLOGGING AND WORKING/COMMUNTING SO MUCH! That is really admirable that you have the energy for it, so keep up the awesomeness, yes?!? 😀
    Cait @ Paper Fury recently posted…Weekly Fury #67 // Raven King Ate Me, My Wattpad Story is DONE & I Read Nine 5 Star Books (!!!!)My Profile

    Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      April 30, 2016 at 8:20 am

      Exactly! It’s so easy to look at what someone already has and think that it was simple for them to get there, but you don’t know how long they were slaving over commenting and posting and writing and re-writing. Networking is super hard but your success is completely based on your effort. Like I know you’ll read all 40 comments, reply, and then go visit everyone’s blog because you’re amazing like that. And if someone’s not willing to put in that effort then they gotta put the jealousy aside ;P

      Thank you! I’ve been commuting long hours since high school so I’m somewhat used to it. The joys of ‘big city’ life.

      Reply
    • ltlibrarian

      April 29, 2016 at 1:50 pm

      You know as I was writing this I was thinking ‘wow, I’m using a lot of Gotham gifs right now.’ It’s hard to avoid only child syndrome, it’s just another one of our struggles

      Reply

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