When I started this blog just three short months ago, I had a slightly different sense of where it might head than where it has been taking me. While the perfectionist in me continues to overthink it, when I step back and look at what this experience has taught me so far, I am grateful for every moment that I have to write whatever I choose in this space. The gratitude runs even deeper than just that. So much more is developing from what I’m doing here, some of it has been surprising and unexpected, but every bit of it has been rewarding. Given my love of Top Five lists, today I wanted to share just a few of the benefits I’ve discovered from blogging, so far. I just might have to revisit this again in six months or a year to see what else might show up.
My Top Five Benefits of Blogging
1. Empowering. Putting my story out to the world for anyone to see has given me a stronger sense of confidence than what I previously carried. Sure, many times it’s scary, and I’ve wondered more than once if I should hit that “Publish” button, but when I do, that fear is quickly diminished. I am proud of what I’m doing here. It isn’t about how many people read it, or who is following along, but if you are, then thank you!
2. Connections. Maybe this one shouldn’t have surprised me, but it wasn’t something that I exactly gave thought to when this project of mine started. Through this space and social media, I’ve had the opportunity to virtually connect with other writers and people who’ve shared similar experiences. Although it’s early, it’s clear that some of these connections will only continue to flourish and I’m excited to see where they take us.
3. Fulfilling. If you don’t know me personally (or maybe even if you do), you may not realize that I tend to be a bit of an introvert. I have a lot of alone time when I’m not at the office, and I used to have my head buried in work probably more than I should have after hours. When I wasn’t working, I was likely looking for other ways to just shut down, and that usually meant a glass or two of wine and something mindless on TV. (Yes, I think my cable box might be permanently stuck on the BRAVO network.) Now, this blog gives me a reason to focus on something else that is far more rewarding. When I’m not working on writing, I’m reading, I’m researching and looking for ways to improve on this skill that I love so much. Although, I’ll still always make time for The Real Housewives of OC. (Guilty pleasure, I can’t help it.)
4. Intentional Living. Since beginning this journey, as I open up and put more of myself out to the world, it seems to naturally force me to examine who I am and where I am headed. I find that I am contemplating my actions more thoughtfully, and I am building healthier habits as a result. Blogging has required time, commitment, and devotion, and in order to keep that up, I’ve had to take better care of myself. I’d say this is a pretty solid benefit, and one that I didn’t expect from this process.
5. Helping Others. I saved the best for last. I cannot begin to explain just how much this part of what I am doing has meant. I continue to be surprised each time someone reaches out, whether through a comment on a post, or through personal messages and conversations. Some people want me to know how proud they are of what I’m doing and I am incredibly grateful for their kindness. The most touching moments, however, have been those when others who can relate to some of my experiences as being an adult child of an alcoholic have reached out to tell me some of their stories, or to just let me know that what I’m doing makes them feel less alone. If this is the only thing that comes out of writing this blog, then that is all that I need to inspire me to keep up the work. Thank you to each one of you who have reached out for trusting me with your stories.