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8 Signs it Might Be Time to Take a Break from Blogging

Asleep At The Blog
“English cricketer Jim Young, 57, carried on batting after a heart attack at the crease in Buntingford, Hertfordshire. He scored another 12 for his village team despite crushing chest pains. He collapsed to his knees and was taken off but went back after a glass of water and scored four more to end up on 48 not out.”

Source The Age – Friday September 1, 2006

Sometimes people need to learn when to take a break. Here are 8 times you might need a break from blogging:

  1. bloggers block – one of the first signs to me that I might need a day (or ten) off from blogging is when I run out of things to write about. You know the feeling – you stare blankly at the screen unable to string a sentence together for hour on end. If you’ve got nothing to say – it’s probably best to say nothing.
  2. when everything you do is ‘blogable’ – at the opposite end of the spectrum to bloggers block is where everything you do, say and think becomes a potential post. You start seeing ideas for posts in your breakfast cereal, start blogging about conversations with your wife, write rants on the postman being late….. If this is happening to you it might be time to step back from blogging a little and get a life :-)
  3. when it intrudes on family – it might seem obvious but I’ve come across a number of bloggers whose family life has come close to breaking down as a result of what bordered on blogging addiction. When blogging intrudes upon real life relationships it’s time to take a good long look at things.
  4. when you have unrealistic expectations – one of the problems with the blogosphere is that it can be a place where hype is ‘spun’ and where people develop unrealistic expectations of what blogging can do for them. I see this all the time in the ‘pro’ blogging space and would strongly advise those looking at ‘going pro’ to take their time, not rush into any extreme actions (like quitting jobs) until you’ve got a realistic understanding of what’s involved. If you find the reality of your blogging and the unrealistic expectations don’t match up you might want to take a break to reevaluate.
  5. when it intrudes on your health – sometimes our body has a way of telling us to ‘stop’. I learned the lesson the hard way earlier in the year when my eyes gave out for a week or two and I thought I was going blind. Give your body (and mind) a break every now and again to rest.
  6. at the end of the week – I come across more and more bloggers who blog long hours 7 days a week. Give yourself at least one complete day off from blogging a week – if you can’t bear the thought of not posting for a day write in advance and set posts to go off while you take some time off.
  7. at vacation time – sounds obvious that you’d take vacations – but I know some bloggers who blog while they’re away on holidays from net cafes. Periodic longer periods away from blogging are good for you, your family/relationships and believe it or not they can also be good for your blog and blog readers (here are 7 things to do with your blog while you’re on vacation).
  8. when your sleep suffers - I know I know – bloggers do their best work late at night when they should be sleeping – but when you find yourself lying in bed at night wondering if your server is still up, dreaming up new post ideas, checking your blackberry for incoming comments or scheming up linkbaiting ideas – maybe it’s time for a break from your blog!

Of course none of this is from personal experience…. (lets hope V doesn’t read this).

I’m pretty sure, knowing the blog addiction suffered by ProBlogger readers, that together you’ll be able to add another 10 or so points to this list in comments!

update: Robert Scoble updates the list with another 8

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Funny, I think it might be time for me to take a break, or at least slow down a bit.

    On the health issue, your body has ways of making you stop, I discovered.

    So I must keep this short.

  2. Ian says:

    I wrote a smaller article yesterday myself on Blogger block.
    I’ve come accross this myself a few times and it’s rough.

  3. Rob Schaumer says:

    Great Points.
    This is useful for non bloggers also. Just replace blogging with job or profession.

    I am getting ready to take a two week vacation from my computer screen as I have seen it almost every day for the past 4 years.

    On a side note before I read this post I had just written some tips on how to overcome writers block. http://www.robschaumer.com/blog/2006/12/06/35-when-your-mind-goes-blank-post-a-book/

    Cheers

  4. Happy Mind says:

    Hey Darren I couldn’t agree more with this post, we all need a break to refresh our brain and start thinking clearly again. As I was reading some of these I was laughing because its so true and so common for bloggers to fall into these traps.

    Ed

  5. Maria says:

    I find that my blogging comes in spurts. I’ll write 5 to 10 entries over a 2-3 day period, then just not write a thing for several days. I think my brain is toggling a blog shut-off switch when it’s time to stop and toggling it back on when it’s ready for more.

    But since I don’t have a lot of regular blog readers — probably less than 100 — I don’t feel a real NEED to blog daily. The way I see it, 5 to 10 new entries a week is enough.

    Thanks for the article. I enjoyed it.

  6. Adnan says:

    You know when you need a break when,

    “You have 10 web page tabs on La Laicité in France trying to keep you focused on writing your French coursework, and yet you still open up Problogger/stats/Wordpress to see how many unique people have read your brand new post which you wrote 20 minutes ago.”

    Is it time for me to lay off the blogging?

  7. Awesome!!!! I think it applies to newbies like me. Now I spend more time blogging than investing which was the main reason to start the blog in the first place.

  8. Hi Darren!

    Nice article: I don’t have much time through the week to work on my blogs since I have other responsibilities to take care of. For this reason I have my best concentration time when lying in bed before falling asleep – this is when the ideas really come to me! I’ve already promised myself not to rise up and wander back to the computer, so instead I keep the trusty pen and paper next to the bed to jot down quick ideas ;)

    Appreciate your tips !

  9. Michelle V. says:

    Lets see.

    #1. Yes
    #2. Is that a problem
    #3. See it’s not just me dear.
    #4. I already am a SAHM This IS my job.
    #5. My shoulders hurt from typing. Does this count?
    #6. I get ideas every day!
    #7. That’s what net cafe’s are for!
    #8. I have children. What’s sleep?

    uh. Don’t let my hubby see this post.

  10. 黔山毛豆 says:

    Rest a few days to relax, maybe have different harvest

  11. WSLiang says:

    Thanks for this great post Darren. I skipped my meals finding things to blog on. T_T

  12. You know you need a break when you try to communicate with your wife by tapping your fingers on her forehead.

  13. quote: “and yet you still open Problogger/stats/Wordpress to see how many unique people have read your brand new post which you wrote 20 minutes ago.” end quote

    And I thought it was just me! Ego, anyone?

  14. Mike says:

    I can really relate to: when everything you do is ‘blogable’. I thought it was just me who did this.

  15. ANP says:

    I was on the phone with my boss earlier this evening and I told her that the book signing she was headed to was definitively “blog-worthy”. Uh oh!

  16. Thanx for this reat information, I will have a look for all these tips.

    Greetinx

  17. Michiel says:

    9. You make lists about blogging.

  18. Loved reading the post. I have also included my 8 points in post at my blog :)

  19. brem says:

    I’d add: you’re denying having a blogging problem.

  20. How about: When your eyes start to water uncontrollably…

  21. Gayla McCord says:

    Great post! I think the same goes for just about any profession though, when it comes to how you view the world around you.

    Before I began working from home, I was a buyer for a convenience store. I found myself not making purchases I normally would because I KNEW what the actual cost was, etc. I started looking at the world through a buyers eyes.

    The thing I like about blogging is that when I’ve had a rough day, I can use my blog as therapy.

    Kind of like those doctors that tell you to write letters but never send them? Well I enjoy knowing that everyone’s stupidity is subject to my blog. Whether I blog them or not, I like secretly knowing I can ‘write that letter.’

  22. Taking a break from blogging can be HARD when it’s tied to your income. But man, what a relief it can be. When blogging becomes work, it can be tough to keep the motivation up. Taking a bit of time away can help remind you why you’re doing this in the first place!

Trackbacks

  1. [...] I was surfing thru’ my RSS feeds when I came across this post by Darren Rowe at ProBlogger. Pretty interesting and when I was going thru’ the list I found that I typically suffer from some of the situations mentioned. [...]

  2. [...] Darren Rowse ha scritto un curioso post su ProBlogger in cui elenca una serie di motivi per cui sarebbe meglio prendersi una pausa dal proprio blog. [...]

  3. [...] Problogger has made a very nice post about 8 Signs it Might Be Time to Take a Break from Blogging. And Scoble has added few from his side also in his post Signs you’ve been blogging too much. [...]

  4. [...] 8 Signs it Might Be Time to Take a Break from Blogging [...]

  5. [...] Darren Rowse has 8 signs you’re blogging too much and Robert Scoble chimes in with 8 more. [...]

  6. [...] Darren at ProBlogger.net cracked me up this morning with his list of 8 Signs It Might Be Time to Take a Break from Blogging. His commenters come up with more good ones too. Here’s my list of signs for when it’s time to escape from the shackles of my computer. [...]

  7. [...] when everything you do is ‘blogable’ – at the opposite end of the spectrum to bloggers block is where everything you do, say and think becomes a potential post. You start seeing ideas for posts in your breakfast cereal, start blogging about conversations with your wife, write rants on the postman being lateread more | digg story [...]

  8. [...] Darren Rowse over at ProBlogger offers us 8 Signs it Might Be Time to Take a Break from Blogging. And there are 8 More Signs You’ve Been Blogging Too Much from the Scobelizer blog. [...]

  9. [...] I found this nice list of signs it might be time to take a break from blogging and I actually experience the symptoms #1, #2 and, first of all, #7: am I blogging too much? An extension to this list can be found here. [...]

  10. [...] Ini adalah 8 situasi yang memerlukan anda perlu berehat dalam blogging, yang saya ambil dan ulas dari problogging.net : [...]

  11. [...] From Pro-blogger, 8 times you might need a break from blogging. And my answers: [...]