Some of my "best posts" in terms of personal value and impact have received less than 20 clicks, and I'm pretty sure half of the clicks I got were me.
|Don't worry about the crickets|
Most of my tweets get 0 retweets or favorites, and that's ok. Sure, it would be nice to have hundreds of people read my posts or get multiple retweets, but it's not why I do it.
I'm not looking to make money off of my blog, I'm not all that interested in how many people follow me, and I don't need any extrinsic acknowledgement to know that writing about what I'm learning makes me better prepared to implement new knowledge and skills into daily habits and routines.
Even if your blog is unreadable, uninteresting, or unengaging there's still plenty of value in it for you as the writer; there's been plenty of value in it for me.
1. It cements your own learning - blogging and tweeting is the perfect follow up to what I'm reading, thinking about, or experiencing. Instead of sitting and thinking and forgetting or reading, highlighting, and forgetting I write it down. I may forget after I write it, but it'll be there when I need it. Blogging or tweeting takes annotating to the next level; it's like an infinitely sized margin of the book. It doesn't have to be on a blog, and it doesn't have to be published; recording it anywhere do more than letting it go.
2. Your words will be there when you need them - On Friday April 11 I left work feeling pretty low. I had an escalating issue that wasn't fixed by my first two rounds of interventions, and the situation was spiraling. Blame was being thrown my way. I was panicking a little, and frustration was overtaking critical thinking. In reading a post I wrote last June I was reminded of a similar situation I faced last year, and how to proceed became clearer and clearer. I re-took control of the situation, established exactly what my next moves needed to be and by the following Thursday the hostilities had subsided. I hadn't even thought about that post from last June since last June, but it was there for me when I needed it the most.
3. It keeps you in touch with the process of learning, reflecting, and creating - With each new piece comes new perspective on the creative process. It's through this constantly evolving perspective that we're able to provide the most effective guidance or instruction to the students or colleagues we work with trying to do the same thing in another arena. Instead of talking about what we think they ought to do, or what we've heard they ought to do, by staying fresh and continuously producing our own output we're able to talk to them about what we do.
4. You never know when someone is going to stumble across your words - Last summer I started my first full time school leadership position at a new school, and within a couple of weeks of being hired I was with my new colleagues at a summer leadership retreat. I hadn't interacted much with my new superintendent, but when we struck up a conversation he mentioned that he had read my blog and was impressed with what he read. It led to immediate conversation starters, and already established who I was as an educator to my new superintendent. And it wasn't even hard.
5. You'll have more effective face to face conversations - I work in education and I blog about teaching and learning and leading; the topics I write about come up in conversation all of the time. They don't come up because I write about them; they come up because they're crucial topics of conversation in schools in 2014. Reading and blogging about it prepares me for these conversations before they happen, because I've already worked through initial thoughts and synthesized information I've heard or read about. I'm a better resource for the people around me because of the writing I do on the side for sometimes the tiniest of audiences.
The bottom line is that you ought not quit writing because you don't think anybody is reading.
It's not about your audience; it's about your own learning and creativity and growth.
The crickets are only temporary.