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Finding the focus for my blog (it’s more than just a niche)

I’ve always loved the idea of having a blog.

None of my reasons for wanting to blog are to do with the current thinking behind blogs. It seems everyone is starting a blog these days with the goal of monetisation right from the start.

I wanted to start a blog because I like writing, I love being able to look back on what I’ve written in the past and I like the idea of having a space that is uniquely mine on the Internet.

So you’d think, given those reasons, I’d find it easy to post to my blog now that I’ve created it but sadly that’s not the case.

So if I’m struggling to write in my blog, perhaps a post about why I struggle to write in my blog would be a good place to start. 🙂

My concerns about privacy

I’m quite a private person and on the one hand, reaching an audience that are interested in what I write is kind of cool (I haven’t yet), I’m also concerned about sharing too much about my personal life with complete strangers on the Internet.

In an age of social engineering and identity theft, revealing too much about myself isn’t safe anymore, for myself, or for my family.

This leaves me in a state of anxiety about writing because I worry about revealing too much to the extent that I don’t write any blog posts for fear of saying too much. I’m pretty circumspect about what I post on Facebook and that’s a closed garden that’s technically limited to people I’ve accepted as ‘friends’.

I really need to overcome this or I might as well delete the blog and write in a diary.

My attempts to cope with executive dysfunction

I really struggle with a disorder called executive dysfunction.

For a large part of my life I thought I was just prone to procrastination but once I was diagnosed with autism about a year ago, I started to examine my behaviour in an attempt to identify how my condition has affected my life.

It was very easy to identify that executive dysfunction was one of my biggest challenges and since doing so, I’ve been taking steps to target this area of my life.

As I write this, it occurs to me that a post about executive dysfunction and the methods that I’ve used to live with it might be useful to some people.

In a nutshell, for me, executive dysfunction means that I struggle to engage with things that need to be done, regardless of my level of interest in the task.

This has become a real burden in my life which is why I’ve gone to great lengths to research the subject and find coping strategies that work for me.

To many people it can appear that executive dysfunction is simply someone putting things off, being lazy, or as I suggested earlier, procrastinating but it’s much more complex than that.

I might have something that I really, really want to do (like draw a portrait) but getting myself to actually sit down, get some paper, find a pen and just make that first mark on the paper seems like an insurmountable task.

I find that breaking my tasks down into smaller tasks that are much easier to achieve can help with this but it can still feel like a colossal effort just to get started. Some days are definitely much worse than others.

As with everything else in my life, writing in my blog is affected by this battle so I need to plan writing into my life if I’m going to start making this blog worth reading. 🙂

Understanding the purpose of my blog

I’ve read many articles on how successful blogs focus on a particular niche or even better, sub-niches but I’ve often struggled to understand how this might apply to a personal blog such as this.

Aside from the annoyance about how some people pronounce ‘niche’, it’s a challenge to figure out what the focus of this blog should be. If I could nail that down, perhaps I’d find it easier to write.

There’s a number of things that I’m interested in.

I love photography, drawing in ink, science, nature, and to some degree, psychology and philosophy. More recently, as I’ve been worried about my sedentary lifestyle, I’ve gained an interest in health and nutrition too.

I’ve also been trying to learn Chinese for the last few years so I guess I could add foreign languages to that list.

I have little to no interest in politics as there are too many closed-minded bigots on the Internet that will immediately attack anyone with different views to theirs.

I have no desire to write about religion either. Having been brought up in a religion that destroyed my self-esteem and happiness, I have no interest in religion unless it’s from an objective point of view.

Like politics, religion is a bit of a hot-potato to write about because of the number of people that can’t see beyond their own beliefs.

Although I now have a near atheist outlook, I don’t deny others the right to believe as they will or feel the need to attack their faith.

Just because religion didn’t work for me doesn’t mean I can’t accept it gives others an essential degree of hope or meaning in their lives.

My lack of time

Unlike many people that claim that they have no time to do anything, in my case, for the last few years, it’s literally been true.

I’ve been lucky enough to take care of my young children while my wife is studying away from home but I’ve been having to work full time at the same time (fortunately I work from home which helps with the logistics).

Taking care of little people full time as well as working has left me with so little time that I often struggle to find time for myself (although I suspect the executive dysfunction has a part to play there).

I have found it somewhat irritating when people have been furloughed from work with an 80% salary and then complained that they’re bored and don’t know what to do with themselves.

I can’t remember a time that I’ve had enough free time to be bored. 😂

In time, this will change but I’m sure that coming to terms with my task-management issues will help to some extent.

So, what is the purpose of my blog?

I’ve started to think, as I’ve write this, that the purpose of this blog should be to enable me to discuss topics that interest me.

I’m not going to write about the tedious minutiae of my life as I don’t even put that stuff on social media and nobody would find it interesting anyway.

I already have separate web-pages for my ink drawings and pens so I’m going to focus on those interests there but I might occasionally mention them here.

With that in mind, it looks as if this blog is going to be about the following topics, from this point forward:

  • Photography
  • Philosophy (particularly Secular Buddhism)
  • Science & technology
  • Personal health & nutrition
  • Learning foreign languages
  • Autism

It actually feels like a huge relief being able to discern what I’m going to write about moving forwards. I’m hoping this will help me to write her more regularly and perhaps find an audience that shares my interests.

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