Did you figure out my mind-splinter? (Read here if you are thinking, “what the hell is a mind-splinter?”)
There were definitely some good guesses. My friends, you know me well. But let us please put to rest the rumor that I am pregnant. I can understand why you might think that given this post and all, but in fact, I am not.
I am also not moving to Bend….yet.
So what is this mysterious mind-splinter?
Let me explain. You know this already, but I love blogging and I love home decor. If you could read my mind, you would see that I am, almost always, thinking about one or more of the following things: blogging, home decor, my children, my husband or coffee.
When my mind wanders to blogging and home decor, mostly I find myself thinking about how I can turn these two things into a full-time job.
Boom. There it is. Mind-splinter.
Can we just pause for a moment to acknowledge that saying that out loud (and to the Internet!) kind of takes my breath away. And not in the it-is-all-so-beautiful-I think-I-am-going-to-cry-sort of way. No. More in the it-is-all-so-scary-I think-I-might-puke sort of way.
Because here is the thing…while I love these things so much and I dream about pursuing them professionally, the truth is that I am really scared. I am scared to death that I am not knowledgeable enough or good enough at these things for them to ever become my job.
Case in point: In terms of blogging, to date, I have made ZERO dollars (or cents, for that matter) off of this blog. So trying to imagine that blogging could generate any source of income is absolutely unfathomable to me.
And let’s not even go down the path of comparing my house or my blog to the many gazillion other houses or blogs out there. I have been down that path; it is not a comfortable path. It is filled with lots of pretty people and perfectly styled pictures and loads of self-doubt.
Basically, there is no good reason that I should pursue these passions further except that I can no longer ignore my desire to try. The weight of discomfort felt from not doing anything about this mind-splinter is steadily starting to outweigh the benefits. The benefits mostly being that if I don’t try, I can’t fail.
Lame. But true.
So onto (what I assume might be) some frequently asked questions:
Do you have a plan? No. Not really. Not yet.
Are you quitting your day job? Absolutely not.
Would you like to quit your day job? No comment.
No, seriously, do you want to quit your job? Okay…let me be super clear about this, so there is no misunderstanding. I don’t HATE my day job. I don’t even dislike it. I don’t wake up and dread going into work (although, if I am being perfectly honest, I do dread grading papers). Actually, most days, I really love what I do. Interacting with students and helping them become better learners (and humans) is an awesome gig. Truly. But all that being said, I am craving a change. I am craving greater flexibility and new challenges. I think most importantly, I am craving more creativity. For me, it really is less about NOT wanting to be a teacher and more about WANTING to pursue my creative passions. So if money were no object, would I quit? The honest answer is: yes.
How are you going to do this on top of your full-time job and being a mama and wife? I have no idea. I assume I might sleep less and I will probably drink more coffee. I definitely will spend less time on Facebook. It is also possible that I won’t be able to do this at all and I will fail magnificently. But I am trying not to think about that.
With this new mindset, do you foresee your blog changing? Again, I don’t know (see point one). One thing that I hopewill change is the frequency of my posts. I hope to dedicate more time to writing more and, therefore, be able to post more regularly. A lofty goal, considering time is scarce as is, but it is something I want to try and work towards. Another change that you might have already noticed is that there are now advertisements on the blog. I’m sure you know this but advertisements are one way that bloggers can generate income. Admittedly, you would need to have a pretty large following for this to be lucrative. With my current following, I might make one dollar in a month. Maybe. But again, I want (need?) to see what happens when I just try. You will also notice that I have included links to affiliate programs or products that I genuinely love and or use. See those books over there on the right-hand side of this page? Those are affiliate links. Basically, if you were to click on one of those links and purchase a book, I would get a proportion of that sale. So for a $13 book, I might make 10 cents. Peanuts, really. But again, it isn’t really about “getting rich” or “making sales”. It is about doing what I am already doing, but just doing it a little bit smarter so that, maybe, one day I can do it full-time. And don’t worry, any product or company that I associate myself with it is because I genuinely love, love, love it/them. It is simply a bonus if you love it/them too. And yes, I am sure there will be some other changes to my blog. I always want this blog to be better so hopefully it will change as I learn and grow.
Is there anything you hope won’t change? I don’t ever want to be anything less than authentic. I don’t ever want to write something that I am not genuinely feeling or experiencing or loving or hating. And I definitely don’t want to just become a “salesperson”. Sometimes, I get the feeling that when blogs become businesses, bloggers feel less freedom to speak their truth. I don’t want any part of that. A real perk of having a small readership is that I feel ZERO pressure to write about this or that. When no one is paying attention, you can really do and say whatever you like. I don’t ever want to lose that.
Do you feel just a little bit foolish announcing to the world that you want blogging and home decor to be your job?Ummm. Yes. I feel like I have just told you that I want to be a ballerina when I grow up. And, in many ways, I think my chances of success are fairly similar. But I am trying to focus on the journey, not the outcome. I enjoy these things immensely so I just want to playfully pursue them. In the same way a child might explore a newly fallen tree in the woods; with curiosity, excitement and zero expectation of what they might find.
Why are you telling us all this? Once again, I don’t really know. It certainly would have been easier to keep you all out of the loop and not have to put myself “out there”. But there is another part of me that knows that I am not the only one with a nagging mind-splinter. And in my brief moments of bravery, I think, ” F*#% fear. By putting yourself out there, you just might inspire somebody else to take the next step in their own splinter saga. Isn’t that worth the risk?”. I’ll get back to you on the answer to that question…but I think the answer is, “YES!”.
I’m not sure if you will ever be able to fully appreciate how much your encouraging comments, emails and/or Facebook likes over the last 2 years has helped me get to this point (this point = standing on the edge of a cliff, with no parachute, ready to jump. So basically, if I die, it is your fault! Just kidding).
In all seriousness, thank you!
Lastly, please don’t leave me hanging out here on this cliff all by myself…JOIN ME! Tell me, what is YOUR mind-splinter? Want to tackle our mind-splinters together? One scary, unknown step at a time? If so, please contact me. Maybe we can start a support group? Mind-splinters Anonymous. I’m only half-kidding.
If you would like to continue to show your support for this blog, here are a few things you can do:
You can like my Homebody and Soul Facebook page or follow me on Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter.
You can also follow me on Periscope (which admittedly, I have never actually even used…but it looks interesting. You can find me @homebodyandsoul).
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