I had an ugly sweatshirt in the 4th grade. White, boxy, hoodless, with crooked, flourescent letters citing all the ways one could say “no” to drugs (i.e. Broken Record, Cold Shoulder, etc.), this dashing little number makes several frightful appearances in my childhood photo albums.
I scored that puppy in an essay contest. The topic was, “What will you do if someone offers you drugs?”
The DARE officers liked that I said “I would weigh the pros and cons.”
The Good News: I said no to drugs.
The Other News: I think the quadrant of my brain that is responsible for pro/con weighing may be hyperactive. By that, I mean I do a lot of pro/con weight-checking. A lot of it. And I mostly weigh the cons. It’s a terrific risk-avoidance tool.
It’s also a bit of a handicap in a risk-begets-rewards world.
And now I have been offered a new drug. About a year ago, a friend suggested that I should start a blog. And it’s been in the back of my mind ever since.
Right here is where I feel inclined to list all the potential “cons” of blogging.
But nobody likes a killjoy. (Let that be a lesson to you, Verizon Wireless Billing.)
Instead, here are the reasons why I should blog:
To become a better Mom. A better wife. A better person.
Writing forces reflection. It enables me to maximize how much I learn from each experience. Which means that every time I write, I will walk away a more informed, more capable person than I was when I picked up the pen.
To help other new moms.
When I was pregnant, I couldn’t even find my way through Babies-R-Us, never mind change a diaper. I am profoundly grateful to all the Moms who have shared their experiences and advice with me. Kindness is like a rock in a pond: it creates a lot of ripples. Blogging is my opportunity to ripple.
To have a reference when I’m trying to remember this stuff for my second kid.
Why relearn old lessons? Sounds like a waste of time.
To force myself to research worthwhile topics.
Years ago, when I told my grandfather that the percentage of women at universities is now equivalent to that of men, he told me [FEMINISTS! Avert your eyes!], “That’s wonderful. A woman must educate herself for the sake of her children.” While I don’t think that’s the reason every woman attends college, I cannot disagree with him.
To open myself up for feedback and constructive criticism.
Immediate access to feedback is one of three key elements that separates experts from non-experts. No, I’m not making that up. Smart people said so in the most popular Freakonomics columns ever. (Thanks for that link, PT!)
To rise above my fears.
Sha-BAM. ‘Nuf said.
I’ve taken a few calculated risks in my life. I left a comfortable, lucrative job to start a business in a field about which, at the time, I knew considerably little. You could argue that I’ve taken a few leaps in my romantic life as well.
But those risks weren’t impulsive; they were calculated. And I’m glad I took them. Because they have led to some of my happiest moments, some of my greatest lessons, some of my proudest accomplishments.
So I’m blogging for me. I’m blogging to inspire my own purposeful introspection, and to create a record of my triumphs over the unknown.
I’m blogging to become the best Mom and wife that I can be. If my readers can benefit from my writing, I should be so honored.
I think that’s worth the risk.
Do you identify with any of this?
What held (or is holding) you back from blogging?
I look forward to your comments!