Monday, April 11, 2011

Why I Blog

{In which I reflect on the benefits of blogging in hopes that more of my friends will start blogging too}

So ever since that time self-induced stress resulted in an interview with myself, I've been thinking more about why I blog. I mean, blog posts don't materialize spontaneously. It takes a lot of effort, and I strongly dislike energy expenditure (read: lazy). I can totally see why most people who blog give up within the first few months. But fear not! I'm not in any hurry to quit, and you'll see why.

I admit that I didn't know where this whole blogging thing was going when I first started. I didn't even have a topic! (I still don't.) I know finding a niche is really important for a blog to be successful in terms of readership, and for a while I inwardly struggled with my blog's lack of focus.

But then I realized I don't mind if my blog is purely personal. Its contents evolve with my whims, and sometimes I surprise myself with my posts. I learn a lot about myself through the way I express my experiences and thoughts. For example, I always had an inkling I like stories and photography, but who knew I'd be so fond of essays? I'm enjoying getting to know myself and figuring out what I like, and hopefully that'll help me to know what I want (something I've always had trouble with).

This self-discovery is made possible by the sense of accountability blogging gives me. Sure, I journaled and picked out favorite photographs even before I began blogging, albeit irregularly. But running a blog motivates me to create content more frequently — and fortunately, I seem to be in no danger of running out of ideas.

It's the execution that's more of a challenge. The visibility of my blog provides me with much stronger incentive to polish my work, which I appreciate. Writing for others forces me to articulate my thoughts with clarity and flow, and even if I'm not always successful, I benefit a lot from the exercise. And evaluating my photos for posting strengthens my photography skills as well. (I tend to skimp on the editing part of blogging since it's so much work, but I'm determined to make it more of a priority!)

It's so cool that the blog not only shows me where I am now but also tracks my progress as I practice and develop my vision of where I want to be in the future. Blogging makes me a better photographer and writer, especially as I reflect on my work, analyze mistakes, and identify areas in which I can improve. And more than that, I'm trying to find myself though blogging. And since a good friend told me "your blog makes you even YOU-er," I suppose I'm not entirely off the mark.

I admit that I frequently fail to measure up to my vision of the kind of blogger I'd like to be. For example, I'd planned for this post to be published last week, but I didn't finish it in time. There are sloppy posts and duds in the archives, not to mention many missed days of blogging (and I'm more than a month behind on photos!). This bothers the perfectionist in me, but I've come to accept that being imperfect is an unfortunate side effect of being human. :P

As someone who always had a hard time accepting failure despite its inevitability, I'm gradually starting to appreciate the process of pursuing excellence, rather than being solely results-oriented. It's impossible for me to actualize my vision of perfection — it's a moving target anyway — so I've decided not to feel guilty when I fall short. The important thing is to stay positive, accept that I will fail, learn from the experience, and continue striving.

Personal growth aside, I also enjoy the social aspect. I like that my friends and family can get a sense of what I'm up to, and I really appreciate everyone who reads and/or subscribes. Especially those who take the time to comment! Thank you so much. I love hearing from you. :)

I know everyone who blogs has their own reasons for doing so, and I just wanted to share mine. If you blog, I'd love to hear your reasons! And if you don't, I hope this post encouraged you to consider it. I would love it if more of my friends blogged. Ok, it's a lot of work and not for everyone, but so far I'm enjoying it and learning a lot along the way. So that's why, in spite of my laziness, I choose to blog. I hope you'll join me!

with love,


  1. hahah you get wayyyy too existential about blogging!

  2. hehe i know you have a totally different approach to blogging, but this is
    what i like about it for me :)
    (although i'm not sure what you mean by existential...)

  3. i likes your pictures and the reflective-ness of your posts. it's almost like you're not really so far away as taiwan. keep blogging!

  4. haha thanks justin. i think i'm mainly trying to convince/remind myself i
    want to blog because i feel soooooo lazy and am tempted to just veg out all
    the time XD

  5. I appreciate learning more about Taiwan from reading your posts. It's also interesting to read about your thought processes in making this blog. Of course, the wedding pictures were a definite highlight. Did you see their Berkeley wedding video?

    I've thought about blogging as well, but never really kept it up. Maybe after things settle down with the new job.

  6. aww thanks for being so supportive joel :) you always have thoughtful and clever comments to make, and i really appreciate it :D

    ooohhh must go check out the wedding video!

    you should totally blog! i'm sure your posts will be very insightful and delightful to read :D i look forward to them! and hope your new job is going well (i envy your perks! :P)

  7. Mike Thai has it on Facebook. Phoebe and Brandon went from grand Taiwan style to shotgun wedding, Castro Valley edition.

  8. I think you have a great mindset about blogging. I blog for a lot of the same reasons (self-discovery, personal growth, social connections). It can be so much fun if you allow it to be. :)

    And yes, I think it's natural for a blog to evolve. Just like people! Change is inevitable; stagnancy is death.

  9. Wow, I haven't read that post in a while. Thanks for reminding me of it, and
    for your kind comments. :)

    Yeah, blogging is fun and rewarding... but I so need to get better at
    battling my laziness! :P