Probably to every single one of us bloggers.
We fall in love with blogging by spending hours on end reading, commenting and growing in the blog community. It is the foundation of our own blogs.
But, as time goes on, with our blogs and our families all screaming for our attention, the amount of time we spend actually reading blogs becomes a fraction of what it once was. Now there is Twitter, Facebook and Google+ — not to mention Pinterest and Instagram — to siphon away our hours.
And for those of us who are professional bloggers, the business of blogging, the emails, the freelancing, etc., well, who on earth has time to read other blogs?!?
When I first started blogging, I read and commented for two hours every day. It was how we built relationships before social networking — and it kept the inspiration rich for my own writing.
Now, I don’t spend nearly the same amount of time reading, let alone commenting on other blogs. (Most of my blog reading is on my iPhone where commenting takes far too long and I simply don’t have the patience.)
But, as busy as I get, I can’t let myself stop reading blogs. When I haven’t been reading enough, I can feel it. I sense the disconnect from the community, the lack of inspiration, the absence of friends.
Today, I had only four hours alone to work. I have been offline on vacation with my family and it was time to get back to work. But instead of tackling my to do list, I spent the first two hours reading blog posts and comments, getting inspired and in touch with what is happening in the community.
(A bunch of that reading was catching up on MomCrunch posts — I know I am a bit biased, but man there is some incredible content here!)
When I looked at the clock, the guilt and panic hit — I had just used two of my precious work hours! But, I quickly reminded myself that time spent reading blogs is not wasted, it is invested.
As a professional blogger, I need to be up to date with what is happening in the blogosphere and how readers are reacting to changes. I need to be inspired and pushed to become a better writer myself. And I need to have fun and remember why I am here blogging in the first place.
So, I am here to tell you, it is ok. It is more than ok. Take that time to devour blog posts and comments. Engage in online discussion. Keep up with the blogosphere.
Yes, you are tight on time. I know it! And it may even seem indulgent to take the time to read and comment on other people’s blogs.
But, the truth is, reading blogs makes you a better blogger. And it is a relaxing way to spend a couple hours!