Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Monday, September 12, 2011

Monday Musings: I Can't Keep Up

I think in order to be really successful at blogging, and by that I mean having tons of followers, having lots of people comment on your blog posts, you have to be willing to give it time every day. Lots of time. The more that follow you, the more you should be following in return. But it is not possible, once you follow people, to continue to go to each and every one of the blogs you follow. You begin to find ones that resonate with you, and those folks, you visit whenever you can.

I now understand why some folks whom I followed early on and who followed and commented on my blog, have stopped. They have 800+ followers. Unless you spend every minute of every waking day responding to each comment left on your blog, and then visiting other people's blogs, it is impossible to keep up.

I once did an energy pie chart and discovered that most of my energy was going to things that weren't the most important things to me. I love blogging because blogging is writing and it gives me the opportunity to share what I'm thinking and feeling. I am going to continue to do it. But I have to put down the whips when it comes to my expectations about followers, following, and what it all means.

So, if I don't visit your blog as often as you'd like, please forgive me. It's not about you. It's about me.
And if I don't respond to a comment you leave on my blog, please forgive me. It's not about you. It's about me.
And if I don't follow you, even if you've followed me, please forgive me - BUT ALSO LET ME KNOW. It was an oversight and I'll be happy to follow you.

In the meantime, happy blogging, everyone.


Richard said...

I know what you mean.

GigglesandGuns said...


Huntress said...

You are singin' my song, Sistah!
It IS difficult if not impossible to comment on every blog. I treasure every follower but Life intrudes and my writing does suffer if I blog incessantly.
Good and timely post!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I doesn't matter how many followers I gain - I'll still come see you, Karen!

Joanne said...

I hear what you're saying, Karen. And I also second Alex's thoughts :)

Karen Walker said...

Richard, yes, it is hard to find a balance with everything.
GigglesandGuns, thanks
Alex, ditto right back at ya
Joanne, you're back - hi -same with me for you

welcome to my world of poetry said...

I have 426 followers many early ones have fallen by the wayside but many are people who have said they would follow then you don't hear anymore and most of them haven't even got a blog to contact.
I am falling behind commenting as I am getting the first proofs for my book ready and what to put on the cover.....exciting but time consuming.


Melissa Sarno said...

I struggle with this too. It's impossible to get to everyone and everything. You can only do what you can do and we understand :)

L.G.Smith said...

It's very tough to get to everyone's blog, especially on Mondays. Everybody posts! It's also natural that we connect with some people more than others.

Karen Walker said...

Yvonne, how exciting for you - good luck!
Melissa, I write about it so I won't struggle anymore - here's hoping!
L.G. you are so right

Pk Hrezo said...

Karen, you hit the nail on the head. The more followers you have, the harder it is to get around to everyone. I focus on those who comment on my blog regularly and make their blogs priority... but even then sometimes I just can't keep up. I tend to like it when I don't have any posts scheduled for a few days so I can catch up. I hate missing all the wonderful posts.
I will say, however, that if bloggers post something especially long, I tend to skip it unless it's someone like you that is more resonating. The bloggers who resonate with me I visit and read regardless, others who are more random have to really pull me in or I just don't have the time. This is prolly how agents must feel with submissions. yikes. *lightbulb* I think I have a post for Wednesday! lol

Laura Eno said...

Yes! And my focus right now is on writing novels, not blogging so even my blog suffers. It makes me feel like a failure at times, not getting around to other blogs, but I can only be stretched so many ways.

Arlee Bird said...

I know exactly what you're talking about, Karen. It all becomes overwhelming. As I try to respond to almost every one of my comments and reciprocate visits to my blog, I find myself getting ever further behind in that and neglecting things like actual writing, marketing, and daily life responsibilities. I know I have to let some of it go because there is not enough time. Even if I had a superfast computer I don't think I could do it all. I'm in the same boat as you Karen and the sails can't handle the wind and I'm getting too tired to keep paddling.

Blog on the best you can--your loyal core of followers will be there as long as you are posting something and we'll be happy to see you whenever you can stop by our blogs.

Tossing It Out

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Karen, I understand. I hit internet burnout earlier this year and now I don't even try to keep up anymore. I just do the best I can and hope everyone doesn't forget me.

Suze said...

Blogging burnout happens to everyone.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Karen .. it is only doing what we're doing and what we can do - I'm grateful I've kept my numbers relatively low .. as it can get a bit much.

Having said that - if we make the effort to become part of a community - we can always have a break and come back in .. and be welcomed back ...

But you're having a lovely holiday and we'll be here on your return ...

It's that balance of life and soul - good luck .. all will be well - cheers for now .. Hilary

Carolyn V said...

It is hard to keep up. I spend 1 hour a day on blogger, then I have to quit so I can keep up with the writing. ;)

KarenG said...

Anytime I get obsessed with numbers I depress myself. I stopped chasing followers some time ago, and I'm a lot happier for it! Whatever followers or comments I get, that's what I get, and like Carolyn V, I have limited my time to an hour a day or I'd never get anything else done.

Donna said...

Perfectly understandable. I have a hard time keeping up and I have only 10% of what you have for followers.

The Old Silly said...

I can certainly relate to and understand this post. Blogging, while it is a great tool and should be considered that by writers for building up a readership, should also be fun - not a burdensome "gotta do this" diurnal chore. That's one of the reasons why I had to take a summer blogcation. And even though I'm back to blogging again, I refuse to let it consume my day to the point where I can't be productive in other areas and have fun while I am blogging.

Good post--as always, candid and for real.

Marvin D Wilson

Talli Roland said...

It is so hard keeping up, isn't it? I reduced my blogging to three times a week, so I'd have more time to get around to everyone. I still find I struggle, but I try my best!

Karen Walker said...

Wow, this seemed to resonate with people - I'm always so relieved when I'm not alone!!
Pk, I'm with you on your lightbulb moment
Laura, good for you
Lee, thanks, I hope so
Diane, you are unforgettable!!
Suze, this doesn't feel like burn out - it's a time management issue
Hilary, thanks, can't wait for my holiday to start
Carolyn, one hour a day, really? Wow, I'm going to shoot for that!
KarenG, all right then, one hour it is - and stop chasing numbers - got it.
Donna, it's a double-edged sword
Hi Old Silly, wise words, as usual
Talli, you do it so well!

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Boyohboy, you said (wrote?) a mouthful. I spend entirely too much time researching and writing my own posts, and then trying to read and comment on others. It's a huge time hole. I'm still new enough at this that I feel terrible guilty if I don't check someone's blog, but if I EVER hope to complete my other non-blog writing, I have GOT to draw the line somewhere. And soon!

Karen Walker said...

You are so right, Susan. Good luck with that!

Bish Denham said...

This sure rings a chord with me! I allow myself one day to try to visit and comment, otherwise I'd never get anything else done.

Linda H. said...

How true! I was away the whole month of August and with getting read for school to begin, I haven't posted a darn thing. I am just getting around to reading some of my blogger friend's post. I hope most of them have the same outlook as you :-)

Kristi said...

So, so true! I couldn't agree more! I think when we all start blogging, we practically kill ourselves trying to keep up and eventually hit that stride where we decide how best to go about doing this thing we love for ourselves, while connecting with those people we really feel "connected" to. I love the blogosphere and all my online friends, but learning to balance it is always a sort of struggle. :P

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy said...

Hi Karen,

I remember going through all of that process too. I was getting very caught up in the "following" thing, and eventually withdrew. I took it off, though it is still there if you know where to look. I still follow others and add new folks, but I have given up on getting new followers. Instead, I am concentrating on building relationships with others.

Blogging does take a lot of time, that is for sure. I spend usually 3 to 4 hours per day on it. I have found several memes that I participate in, and I enjoy those.

I really like your "Telling the Truth Tuedays". I think that I'll adopt that occasionally on my own blog.

Take care,

Kathy M.

Better is Possible said...

Thanks! I feel released and encouraged by your comments.