Fur Mom Confessions | I Hit a Wall with Keep the Tail Wagging

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Screen shot 2012-01-07 at 3.57.48 PM - Crop, Me, Self Portrait

Lately I’ve lost the excitement of blogging – not my blog, but the business of blogging.  I didn’t realize it until I started seeing other bloggers who were dealing with the same thing.  The worst part was reading comments from a couple people I respect telling me, in essence, that my blog wasn’t on their reading list anymore.

Having a couple people not like my blog isn’t a big deal.  It happens.  But more was happening…

I was becoming a little agitated.  I was easily annoyed by…

  • emails offering to guest post for my blog when I clearly state that I don’t accept guest posts
  • brands and businesses who want me to promote products I don’t use with our dogs; for free
  • silly  misunderstandings on social media  that bum me out
  • ignorant comments about raising dogs and raw dog food by people who aren’t pet professionals
  • and so on and so on and so on

None of these things bother me normally.

Whenever I find myself getting annoyed by Facebook, my blog, or the Internet in general, I know that it’s time for a break.  I binge watch a television show, read a book, watch a movie, take the dogs for a walk- I do something to get my mind off social networking.

It usually works.

Lately, it hasn’t been working, so I had to dig a little deeper about what was pissing me off.

It was ME!  Yep, ME!

I’ve put so much pressure on myself to make money, to build a business, to blog full time.  Guess what!  Pressure sucks!

So I took away the pressure.

In 2014, I’m going back to enjoying blogging and writing about our dogs.  I’m also going to start writing about things that are important to me…

  • raw dog food
  • natural / holistic dog care
  • products we buy regularly or are interested in buying
  • stores we shop at all the time and pet related sites I stalk online

I’ve already started and it’s so much more fun.  Wow!  I won’t be resigning from my job anytime soon and that’s okay.  But at least I’ll continue having a blast with blogging about our dogs.

This doesn’t mean that I’m taking a break.  I love writing, I love learning and I love being part of a great dog lover community.   I’m just removing the pressure that I’ve placed on myself by taking my blog into a direction that my life raising dogs has already headed :)

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29 Comments

  1. Good on you. It’s easy to get sucked into the mentality that you have to make money from the blog but if that’s not really for you, that takes all fun out of a nice hobby. I feel like we lose a lot of great voices to that pressure to make the blog a business when it’s not a good fit.
    Dogmama recently published..Getting out for a groom and walkMy Profile
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  2. Whenever I feel overwhelmed or burnt out, I take time off immediately. If something is no longer fun, don’t do it. Even if you love something, you can get burnt out, and taking time off will make you realize how much you really do love it . . . and you’ll come back bigger and better with a renewed sense of vitality and purpose.

    It’s cliche, but moderation really is key. I’ve made the mistake many times of becoming obsessive and never taking a break. And guess what, I burnt out every time. Take time off and enjoy yourself, and everything will fall back into place. :)

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    • I’m taking a huge break from the money side. It’s just too much pressure and I think I ultimately hurt my blog when it starts to look like one long commercial. People follow me for stories about raising dogs, not the latest brand who paid me to write about them.

      Thanks for the advice!
      Kimberly recently published..Fur Mom Confessions | I Hit a Wall with Keep the Tail WaggingMy Profile
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    • LOL – it’s funny how many people seem to think that I’m taking a break. Nope. Not happening. Not in my nature. I’m just setting one of the many balls I’m juggling down, but I’ll still be an energizer bunny when it comes to blogging.

      Definitely turn away! It’s just going to get worst, because now I’m having so much more fun!
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      • I didn’t mean a break from blogging. You said a break from promoting a bunch of stuff for money in your post so I assumed you would know that is what I thought you were “taking a break from” in my comment.I am not sure where you got that I was saying blogging all together.

        Doing so much for so many people on your blog can be exhausting. I know because I have been there. So watching you do it put me in your shoes, figuratively speaking,and made “me feel “exhausted”…a tease/ joke of course.
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        • I think this is my weekend for misunderstandings. I was just replying back, not really responding directly to something you said. I’m getting a lot of emails from people who think I’m taking a break from blogging and it gives me a giggle, because the exact opposite is happening. By making a change I’m able to take on so much more, but it’s all stuff I enjoy. Sorry for the confusion.
          Kimberly recently published..Fur Mom Confessions | I Hit a Wall with Keep the Tail WaggingMy Profile
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  3. While I’m happy to dabble in affiliate ads to pay for hosting fees and other costs of writing Something Wagging, I can’t bring myself to seriously monetize it. It’s too personal. I think it would take the fun away.

    As it appears dealing with some of that stuff has done for you.

    Some of the folks who are most successful at making money blogging do it in a related area, not the thing they’re most passionate about.

    You’ve worked so hard on your blog and created an income for yourself very quickly. You do have talents that you might be able to use to support yourself in a different direction.

    For example, I’ve been very frustrated that technical help for bloggers, even when it’s geared toward beginners, uses too much jargon to be useful.

    Since I teach first home buyer classes, I know a little something about translating complicated things into simple language. And it pisses me off that more people in computer tech fields can’t do that.

    So maybe if you like the idea of being self-employed, maybe you go in a different direction than monetizing Keep the Tail Wagging. Personally, I bet people would be willing to pay for the knowledge you’ve gained about blogging.

    Just a thought for the future.

    And welcome back to doing what you love. I look forward to seeing more “Kimberly” on Keep the Tail Wagging.
    Pamela recently published..Why Dog Lovers Piss Me OffMy Profile
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  4. I get freaked out by conversations about SEO and spiders (the Google kind, not the arachnid kind) and sponsorship and guest posts etc. etc. I was writing before people had personal computers, and writing was supposed to be about content, not search words and Google rank. I just put up a long-assed blog post *without any pictures* (can you IMAGINE THAT???) because, well, I didn’t feel there were any pictures that went with the post and it was about an idea, not an activity or product. It’s the kiss of death, I know, but too damn bad.
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    • LOL – WHAT!!! NO PICTURES?????

      It’s crazy how I have gotten so wrapped up in the “rules” of blogging. I removed an SEO plugin to just see if it would make a difference. The only thing that happened was that my site moved faster.

      I still believe in SEO, but I don’t think that I can ever do it at the level that professionals do so why even try? If I stick to good content, then I should be okay.
      Kimberly recently published..Fur Mom Confessions | I Hit a Wall with Keep the Tail WaggingMy Profile
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  5. Good for you! I think we all initially get swept up in the idea of building a business with our blogs and like you, it burnt me out really fast. I came to the same conclusion, if it wasn’t a product I was passionate about using, it wasn’t worth sharing with my readers anyways. I look forward to catching up as you get back to your passions here!
    Jodi Chick (+ Kolchak & Felix too) recently published..5 Ways to Soothe a Sick DogMy Profile
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  6. So happy to hear it Kimberly! Even though I just started my blog in December (with you as my main inspiration!!!) I only briefly thought about monetizing my blog. The THOUGHT really stressed me out. I listed pros and cons, and did a lot more research. When it really came down to it, I decided that trying to make money from my blog (as a main goal) just wasn’t for me because I know I can’t deal with the stress. So, like you, I decided to sit down and refocus. When I did, I just decided to continue what I was doing from the beginning – use my blog to share my daily life as a dog mom, brag about Wynston, post photos and share fun dog mom experiences! I haven’t been blogging daily like I really want to because life has been more hectic than I expected since the new year hit, but I am getting back on track! Thanks for sharing with us!
    Amanda Yantos recently published..Carrots :)My Profile
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  7. The trick us to focus on the joy it is to write about our dogs. It’s a pleasure to remember endearing moments with our dogs, or to tell other dog lovers things that can make their pet’s life happier and healthier. That is your purpose, and as long as you are aware of why you love to talk about dogs, this will not seem like an annoying task anymore.

    I like your new topic list. Let me suggest another topic: Best Vets in Your Neighborhood. It is so important to know where to go when you need a good professional with love for dogs. I know how hard it is to lose your pet to a bad veterinarian.

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    • Thank you so much, Julie

      After our experience with the vet not wanting to see Blue after he was hit by a car, I too understand how important this is. It would be a great feature. Thanks for the great idea.
      Kimberly recently published..Raw Dog Food | Can Dogs Get Sick from Eating Raw MeatMy Profile
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  8. Good for you! So many of us want to make money blogging, but it can turn our fun part time job into a pain in the furry behind with the fun zapped out. Hopefully if we keep having fun, we will be noticed because we are better when we have fun and good things will come to us. We try to think this way, but it is not always easy.
    Emma recently published..Mardi Gras 2014 | GBGVMy Profile
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  9. I have never intended my kitty blog to be anything more than something I do for fun, but I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t thought it would be nice if I could quit my job and blog full time.. I looked around the blogging landscape and realized there is painfully little money when you don’t conform to traditional medicine/food/products.. not many commercial raw foods are out there paying for blogs, and no one will pay you to blog about making your own raw food.. :(

    good for you for taking a step back and enjoying this again..
    Connie recently published..Charlotte’s routineMy Profile
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    • What’s funny is that the brands that I buy that I should be promoting (and now do) aren’t ones that would pay for promotion – they really don’t have to. But I’m building relationships and I have a feeling that it’ll take me in better place. When I made the decision to stop, OMG, it feel so much better. I hope BlogPaws starts receiving more campaigns for people like us.
      Kimberly recently published..Learning Recall with Games at a PetSmart Puppy ClassMy Profile
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  10. I can completely relate. If I try to run my business to make money, I come across differently to people and in a way I don’t like. I become promotional like a sales-person trying to make a commission when I’d much rather be honest and help people who need just the right thing for their dog. I am still working hard to run my business, but my focus is on sharing information now and not on the numbers. Things are much less stressful this way.
    Dawn recently published..The Ultimate Bergan Dog Seat Belt ReviewMy Profile
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  11. You have to most importantly follow your heart and not put that pressure on you, Kim. I know because I have walked this road. Good for you for standing true to what is most important. Rock on and wag on!
    Carol Bryant recently published..Five Dog Breeds for Older PeopleMy Profile

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  12. I feel your pain! I’m not a blogger but create dog themed photojewelry and matching collars…and I have to blog just to get noticed. I really admire the work you’ve done…blogging is not easy!! Take a break, but don’t overlook all the value you create…and don’t kid yourself – this stuff is hard!
    Good luck,
    Sharon
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    • I think I just took on too much and having so much on my plate PLUS trying to make money just because counterproductive and it sucked. I’m so excited to take a break from the business side.
      Kimberly recently published..Our Vaccination Protocol for Our Dogs #1800PetMedsMy Profile
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  13. Hi Kimberly – Wow! I am sorry for the angst you have gone through,but happy you came to a decision outside the box. I say ‘outside the box’ because that is exactly what things seemed like to me. Not a fun cardboard box, either.
    For me, blogging became a game with way too many rules. My biggest revelation was when working with an affiliate group and finding out all the hoops I had to jump through just to promote them.
    I am not against affiliate marketing, and as a matter of fact, I am working on creating an affiliate network that will launch in the near future. Making money via a blog is not wrong if bloggers enjoy it, it actually works, if you have a fun product to promote, and they are an appreciated part of the process.
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    • Exactly! It feels good to just write without having to meet criteria. The pressure was just too much. I still have affiliates, but they don’t pay as much and they don’t send me emails asking why I’m not promoting them day in and day out. What surprises me is that so many affiliates want constant promotion, but don’t understand that my blog will fail if I just constantly promoted them – people would stop reading.
      Kimberly recently published..Buy a Keep the Tail Wagging Tee and Save a Dog’s LifeMy Profile
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