During Cohort 6 for the Texas Principal Visioning Institute, facilitators spoke a great deal about the power of blogging. I started my journey into blogging a year ago, but having these conversations with other principals the past two days caused me to do a great deal of reflection about why I blog.
I am a very private person. Because of some bullying as a child, I have an intense fear of being judged and tend to become a hermit outside my work life. As a principal, I have learned that to be successful, I must have a public persona. I must show my vulnerability and allow others to connect with me, but sometimes there just doesn’t seem to be enough minutes in the day. I hope that by blogging, it allows others to gain insight to me and understand my motivations in a way that builds trust.
My personal benefit is that I found blogging became my outlet for intense emotions, thoughts, and passions for public education that sometimes kept me awake at night. If I take the time to write and reflect, then it somehow allows me to let some of that go so that I can rest knowing that I still have a record of my thoughts. Before I began writing, it was like I was trying to hold all of my ideas in my brain and I had to remember every detail. Once I write it down, those thoughts are captured , and my brain can relax.
My final reason for blogging is that there are plenty of people in the world with misconceptions or hellbent on telling the negative side of public education. I love my job. I am so proud and honored to serve alongside amazing educators. Working to educate children is my God-given mission. I believe that a free and appropriate education is the right of every child and the vehicle to a better society. Yes, there are negative examples of schools and/or teachers, but I believe there are far more positives stories than bad ones. Educators are the creators of all other professions, and they are the most selfless people I have ever encountered, willing to raise not only their children but the children of others. If we don’t tell our story, then who will? No, wait, if we don’t tell our story of greatness, shame on us!
It’s still hard to blog. Sometimes my brain shuts down. Sometimes, I know I use too many passive voice sentences, and I am fearful I make too many mistakes because I am not an English expert or that I am too wordy. (Yes, that is my fear of judgment rising to the surface again.) I have to remind myself to use my growth mindset, have grit, and be willing to give myself grace just as I ask my staff and students to do so that I can reinforce my own beliefs and thoughts. However, when I hit publish, I can still become consumed by watching to see how many people actually view my post or the fact that I don’t have many followers, or wondering if people will share my words with others. I’ve even had times that my blog was lost in the middle of publishing and that just makes me mad and I stop blogging for a while.
I guess in the long run, the best reason for any blogger to blog is for yourself. People will like you, or not like you. They will follow you, or not follow you. The will share you, or not share you. They will comment, or not. No matter what you will always have how you feel about yourself and your blog at the end of the day. For me, the benefits I get from the release, outweigh any negatives. Besides, if you are wanting to make an impact, there isn’t even the possibility for your words to have a positive impact on others if you don’t put them out there.