Five Easy Steps That (Won’t) Fix Your Life

Five Easy Steps That Won't Fix Your Life

My favorite blog posts (and books for that matter) provide a glimpse into the soul of the author. I want to know what’s going on in a person’s life: what you’re preparing for dinner, your current Netflix addiction, your new favorite fashion trend. But more importantly: What are you learning? What’s making you feel alive in this moment? I’ve begun to notice that “slice of life” posts seem to be less common amongst lifestyle bloggers as of late. A lot of posts seem to be all about easy ways to “fix” an area of your life.

I certainly enjoy finding new ways to budget, organize, travel etc while reading how-to blog posts (How to live a great holistic/simplistic/minimalistic full life in 10 easy steps or less!), but let’s not forget to share our stories. My life is not solved by following a five step process (though I often wish it was!).

Social Media sometimes has a reputation of inauthenticity. The reality is that no one is perfect. Everyone has struggles. I hope you all know I sometimes leave the dinner dishes on the counter overnight, bicker with Jordan, skip workouts, struggle with insecurities, and forget to respond to friend’s emails.

The last month or so I’ve felt a tinge of blogger burnout. Except it isn’t exactly burnout — It’s more me wondering if this space is still relevant. Am I sharing content that matters? Am I telling my story… my honest truth, well? The big things and the small are both important. When infertility became part of my story, I thought, “Is this a piece of the “purpose” I’ve been asking for? Is this a part of my greater story?” 

“There’s nothing small or inconsequential about our stories. There is, in fact, nothing bigger. And when we tell the truth about our lives—the broken parts, the secret parts, the beautiful parts—then the gospel comes to life, an actual story about redemption, instead of abstraction and theory and things you learn in Sunday school.” — Shauna Niequest, Savour. 

I am still figuring out this life of mine.

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23 thoughts on “Five Easy Steps That (Won’t) Fix Your Life”

  1. I am so glad you addressed the fact that no one seems to be doing life updates anymore. I have strayed away from them because they aren’t “what real bloggers do”, but I enjoy writing them every now and then, and I guess I shouldn’t feel like less of a blogger for writing them. After-all, I loved this post you just wrote 🙂

  2. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately! I think where I’ve landed is that I’m always going to have a mix-no one wants to read what I did every day forever, you know? But at the same time, it’s MY blog, so I should feel comfortable showing up some days and just writing about life with no cute tag lines or pinterest-worthy steps. For me, it’s just about balance. Too many of the “five-step” type posts and I question why I’m even writing.

  3. I know what you mean about blogger burnout. I’ve been struggling with not putting my self-worth into how many followers I have or how many comments I get on a post. It’s easy to get burned out but my husband reminds me why I do this. I love your content and love that you go beyond the clothes and the physical side of style blogging and show your readers what’s in your heart and your struggles. Your following can see your sweet spirit and heart. It’s been a pleasure getting to know you!

    P.S. nice sweater 🙂

  4. I love how you mention authenticity! This topic in blogging and social media is starting to surface more often. I think people are tired of all the information overload and “fakeness”. They are looking for something real and so few people are offering that. Thanks for being willing to address this issue!

  5. I see this struggle everywhere. I do think blogging is a valid place to tell stories. I wish so much that more folks saw it this way instead of a measuring stick. Thanks for covering an important perspective.

  6. yes.
    this post – just simply yes.
    there is this true layer of inauthentic blehk that seems to haze over so many things – and it’s frustrating and really digs at me.
    thank you for taking a moment to not only address it but go against the current!

  7. Thank you for writing this. Lately I feel like every post is just as you said – a “how to”. I began reading blogs and eventually writing my own to share moments of life, and I’m not loving the direction that lifestyle blogs are going lately. Hit the nail on the head!

  8. I love helping people, so I’m all for the how-to post, especially if I can make someone’s life a bit easier by using my past experiences. But I think that it’s important to share those experiences with readers so they get to know you better and feel like they can relate to you. If you have a post on ways to become a better person, then I certainly think you should share your struggles and journeys with doing just that. No one likes reading about people with perfect lives because most people can’t relate. So I love opening up about my life and struggles with my readers when I’m giving them tips or advice with how to deal with something. It’s definitely all about having that balance and being as open as you can with your readers while also trying to help them. Thanks for sharing this.

  9. I’ve been having the same exact feelings. My blog just really stopped mattering to me as much. It didn’t feel as relevant to my life anymore and I hate that. I’ve tried infusing more things I’m really passionate about lately, like running and social justice, but I’m still struggling! Hang in there!

  10. This is so true…if we COULD fix our lives in 5 easy steps wouldn’t we all have perfect lives??!! I do love the real life bloggers who talk about struggles, victories, loves, losses and real life. It makes me feel like I am not alone in what I go through in life and that others are just like me.

  11. I’ve noticed so many of these posts in my Bloglovin feed and RSS reader. I guess more bloggers are focusing on SEO and sponsored posts. My blog is relatively new so I’m still trying to figure it all out.

  12. I loved that quote when you shared it in IG, friend! And I struggle with this too– most of my posts are life-related reflections, but none of them are too specific. I get a little nervous about sharing too many details. But I try to be honest about what I’m walking through, and what I’m learning!

    1. I think you do a great job at weaving your personal experience in…I can tell you aren’t just selling me a way of life that you don’t believe in. And Shauna is just great. Have you read any of your books?

  13. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately too! It’s hard to balance real life blogging and what you’re supposed to do blogging – especially if you’re hoping to make an income from your blog. Thanks for sharing your sweet heart! <3

  14. Easy answers (or how-to posts) don’t make room for struggle.
    And in struggling growth is always possible. Thanks for being vulnerable. Blogging sure has changed a lot since I got into it in 2006, when I was able to make friends with fellow bloggers and not just promoting each other.

  15. Beautiful post, and your flow into the quote at the end was seemless. I think that the best blogs add value – they give something to us that we didn’t have before. But that doesn’t have to be in how-tos and DIYs. That’s a reason a lot of people read blogs, and so it’s great that a lot of bloggers are covering those topics. But there is value in sharing your stories as well, in life posts as you put them, and though maybe the majority of quick clicking Internet users won’t flock to those posts, they’re just as valuable, and perhaps more important.

  16. Love this post Catherine. Totally just nodding along and shouting YES!! to all this. I’ve been doing some real soul searching the last couple weeks to see where I want to take our blog. While I feel tempted to write all these inspirational 5-step posts because it’s what’s “profitable” and “popular”, it’s the introspective posts that I love to write. The ones that I am penning in my head on the train or lying awake in bed, when I’m being really honest about myself and my journey. I would love to chat sometime about how you balance this and how you choose where to lead your blog.
    Also.. Shauna Niequist? Always inspiring me. Love her writing too!

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