My thoughts on blogging…relatability
13th December 2016
In recent months I’ve seen many people on Twitter discussing (okay, more like complaining) how they feel like they can no longer relate to their favourite bloggers.
In general, most of these comments are in relation to the “big bloggers” who started off reviewing clothes from Primark and now they’re showing off their collection of handbags and shoes from Prada, telling us that £1000 for a bag is “reasonable”.
However, it got me thinking about relatability; about how people relate to me through my blog, and how I relate to others through their blogs.
While my blog has always predominantly been a personal/lifestyle blog, the topics I write about are very much dependent on the stage of life I am in at that particular moment in time.
For instance, when I first started blogging I wrote about school and college, then I moved onto university and started sharing the struggles of leaving home and “adulting” for the first time. Now I write about working full-time and pursuing a career, as well as personal development and reflection which are subjects I enjoy writing about right now.
In the future, when the time comes, I’ll share my journey to buying a house and settling down. I’ll write about my hip replacement that I will inevitably have in the future (hey, it might not be that far away). I’ll write about starting a family, if that’s something I choose to do.
As I grow and evolve, my blog grows and evolves with me.
I know that many of my readers are a similar age to me, so they are also probably going through (or have already been through) many of the life changes I have documented on my blog. I like to think I’m quite a relatable person because I’m just living a normal life, and I’m not afraid to talk about issues that might not be so exciting or glamorous, but that many of us have to face.
Similarly, I tend to read blogs wrote by people of a similar age because I seek comfort in knowing I’m not alone in the phase of life and that other people are experiencing the same ups and downs as I am.
It gives me great comfort to know that someone else has had to move house because they’re neighbours are horrific. It gives me comfort to know that I’m not the only one living with mental illnesses. It gives me comfort knowing I’m not the only blogger in the world who doesn’t want to turn my blog into a full-time job.
I think that a lot of issues on regarding “relatability” in blogging stem from the fact that blogs and social media platforms are becoming more and more curated.
Just because someone’s life looks perfect online doesn’t mean that it’s perfect in real life.
I see it all the time on Instagram and Twitter. Lives are filtered to only show the positive, exciting and aspiration moments. It’s easy to get swept up in these posts and to forget that this isn’t real life. Or at least, it’s not real life all of the time.
It can be hard to relate to someone who is constantly jetting off around the world and staying the most luxurious hotels when you’re stuck in a office, working hard just to pay the bills. I’ll hold my hands up and admit I’ve felt like I couldn’t relate to someone because their life seems so much better than mine, completely ignoring the fact those people probably have to deal with many of the same challenges in life as myself.
What we share online is all down to personal preference, and I personally choose to publish content that reflects my real life. I want to be relatable, and fortunately, in my circumstance, I don’t think that’s too hard!
I’m not afraid to publish a #nomakeup selfie with a flare up of acne, or a blog post that discusses my mental health, because that’s just me and that’s just my life.
Of course it’s sad when we can no longer relate to those bloggers we used to look up to. It can even be frustrating as we wish for them to be more “real” and relatable again. But this isn’t something we can change.
We can’t expect people to stay the same just because it suits us.
We can either continue to support those bloggers we no longer feel we can relate to despite our difference of interests, and move with them as they evolve. Or we can walk away peacefully, and find new blogs that better suit our interests, written by people who we feel we can relate to.
I hope my loyal readers will continue to stick with me as I transition through these various stages of my life, just like they have done in the past, but I won’t feel hurt if they stop reading because they can no longer relate to me. I’ll understand.
Have you ever felt like you can no longer relate to the blogger behind the blog?