Blogging Slump and Re-Focusing

I have been in somewhat of a blogging slump lately. Ideas are coming slow. Comments are nearly non-existent and the creative energy that was going into this blog is being channeled into other places for the time being. I am wondering if part of the problem is what is happening with this blog just isn’t good enough. I have a feeling of discontent toward K.L. that is hard to put into words. I can type up a thorough evaluation of something, review a book, talk about a text, or show a funny video but somehow that doesn’t seem to be enough. What does that really accomplish? For some reason, I am feeling more and more that the focus of this blog needs to change in some way that has yet to be determined.

I don’t know what the focus is going to be but I have to priorities that I want to uphold in moving in whatever direction that is: simplicity and practicality. I am not saying that some of the things that have characterized this blog are going to change drastically, I am still me. But the energy needs some focus or else I will just feel I am spinning my wheels here.

Anyone else ever felt that way?

About mattdabbs
I am a minister, husband, and father. My wife and I live and minister in Saint Petersburg, Florida. My primary ministry responsibilities include: small groups, 20s and 30s, involvement, and adult education.

22 Responses to Blogging Slump and Re-Focusing

  1. Lantz Howard says:

    Matt, I totally echo what you are saying.

    Have you thought about asking your readers what keeps them reading? Or creating a short survey that you could get quick feedback that you might be able to discern or have affirmation of a direction to go?

    Narrowing in on a focus is a tough mental, physical, spiritual, emotional task. May God grant you the peace as you try to find a blogging rhythm.

    • mattdabbs says:

      Thanks Lantz,

      I guess for me it is more gaining a focus that I think can be sustained rather than trying to figure out why people visit the blog. Traffic won’t sustain my effort and attention but feeling like the content is meaningful and transformative will.

      • Barry says:

        Matt, I haven’t read all of the comments back and forth on this latest post of yours, but this reply of yours is spot on. It may be trite and true, but “A bird doesn’t sing because he has an answer; he sings because he has a song.”

        Your ‘song’ — “meaningful and transformative” content — will indeed sustain your “effort and attention” and attract readers, as you ‘sing’ from your heart.

        Also, Rod Serling once told me that at that times writing was like “Staring at a blank page of paper until your forehead began to bleed” (words on the page.) Late in his career he talked about how slow ideas were to come to him, whereas when early on ideas came at him more quickly than he could keep up with.

        What I take from his experience and words is that it’s incumbent upon a writer to keep replenishing the supply to flow — just as a preacher is enjoined to preach from the overflow. Fortunately for you, you have springs of living water flowing from inside. (c:

        Grace and Peace,
        Barry

  2. nick gill says:

    Having never really found a blogging rhythm, I can relate to what you’re saying, and I still haven’t found a good solution. Lantz’s idea is really good – better than anything I’ve come up with.

  3. James Wood says:

    I hear you. I think that like churches, blogs need vision and rest. It is so helpful to have something toward which you’re working and after which you can rest. When church or blogging or life becomes and endless routine without highs or lows, it really just becomes a slow decline. I think God created rhythm to days and weeks and seasons for a reason. Maybe yo need to take a blog Sabbath.

    • mattdabbs says:

      James,

      Blog Sabbath’s can be a really good idea. I don’t think that is it for me right now. I think it was that the content I was focusing on just wasn’t “it.” I just need something a bit more meaningful to keep my attention and to keep seeing this blog as a worthwhile effort. I know deep down that it is, I just need to convince myself sometimes.

  4. I’m with you, Matt … in fact, there’s just too much happening at my church right now for me to have very much creative energy left over for blogging.

    Plus, everytime I get a hint of an inspiration, I also have a suspicion that Jay Guin or Al Maxey probably already have written a free online book about it …!

  5. Guy says:

    absolutely! Am i writing just to gain readership? To host discussions? With a view toward changing minds about particular topics? To represent an agenda already being undertaken by several?

    For my own blog, i decided i need to write for the purpose of sorting out my own views and understandings about things. i’m writing to get clearer on what i think. Having to put my own questions and positions into words forces me to be sharper about where i stand and what i need to explore. Having feedback in comments gives me a perspective outside my own head for those questions and positions. i think approaching it this way can be an effective way to accomplish some of the other purposes i mentioned above. But if i thought of my blog as purely evangelistic in nature, i’d probably do it rather differently and have a more restricted set of topics.

    –Guy

    • mattdabbs says:

      I think this is part of the process for me. It started out because I thought it would be fun. Then I realized if no one read it, what was the use. So I started trying to gain readers. Then I started posting things that I thought were just a part of my own inner thinking that maybe someone else would want to listen to or something I thought humorous or in need of attention. I think there is a fourth transition that is needed to keep this blog on the right track.

  6. Mark says:

    I know how you feel. I haven’t had much energy to put into blogging for a long time. I hope you’ll keep it going. It isn’t the end of the world if you only post periodically. It really takes a lot of energy.

  7. Jason says:

    I know how that is. I thought once this semester was behind me, I’d be overflowing with posts. Not so. Anyway, I enjoy your blog, so I’ll look forward to future posts, no matter the regularity!

  8. Clint P. says:

    I don’t blog but I do have similar experiences when it comes to preparing and presenting lessons for both youth group and young adult classes. Sometimes I just feel like my heart’s not in it because I feel like I said it all before.

    I know you aren’t fishing for compliments, but as a side note this has been one of my very favorite blogs for a couple of years now. This blog and others have really helped me in a time when I don’t have any spiritual mentors. Whatever direction you take just know that what you have done here has been appreciated and has been very useful.

    • mattdabbs says:

      I have felt that same thing when it comes to teach class in the last few months. I think I have come to the point where I have realized maybe these people need to hear someone other than me for a while. That will have something to do with where this is headed, getting guests to write on relevant topics they are passionate about.

  9. jamesbrett says:

    matt, i think you should do something with fire, wild animals, chainsaws, and mud. just to liven the blog up a little…

    not that i don’t enjoy it now.

  10. landsway says:

    Matt;
    I have run into the same thing and I agree it is not about numbers or visitors or what drives people to the blog. What does drive readership is when they can sense the passion you put into the writings; and when that passion is there, you are the first to know it. I have said many times that the person who gets the most out of my blog is me because of the study and learning that goes into it. When we are torn in many directions and having problems identifying problems like this I find it is helpful to stop–be still- and let God be God. He will tell you the answers and they will come from deep within. You may just be too busy with other things to find time to feel the passion. Read Psalm 46:10. You will find your way and be fine.

  11. K. Rex Butts says:

    I enjoy your blog, I enjoy other blogs, and I enjoy publishing posts on my blog but there is no rythm to it because one week I might be inspired to write on several things and the next week will be utterly different.

    Any ways, I am still reading but I have been trying to do less commenting just because I am tired of getting caught up in ‘argumenative’ discussions that seem to solve nothing. As for you…whatever you do with your blog is fine.

    Grace and peace,

    Rex

  12. Terry says:

    Last summer, a friend asked me, “Do you think you will stop blogging if people stop reading your blog?” I said, “No. I need to blog, even if very few people ever read it.” I need to do it as a gift for my son to read someday (as a reminder of who his father was–when I’m gone) and to honor God. As for the direction that my blog takes, I don’t plan ahead. I just post whatever interests me.

  13. Darin says:

    I would follow Terry’s comments.

    I also hear you about “these people need to hear someone else…” I’ve been experiencing that for the past few months. Let me know if you figure out what to do with it. I’m thinking maybe some pulpit trades over the summer.

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