Don't Call Me an Influencer: Picking Up the Pieces

Monday, May 24, 2021
Sometimes people refer to Bloggers as Influencers. According to Merriam-Webster, an Influencer is "a person who is able to generate interest in something (such as a consumer product) by posting about it on social media." I used to say, 'please don't call me an influencer,' because I felt there was more to me than that; more to what I do. There's nothing wrong with being an Influencer, of course, it's just not exactly who I am. First and foremost, I am a writer. I've always been a writer, even when I was a teacher. I write for me, I write for you, and sometimes I even write for other people. Secondly, I'm a blogger. My blog is my pride and joy, and I fuss with it daily, the same way you'd fluff up the pillows on your living room couch or mess with your child's hair to get it just right. But it never goes as planned, does it? The dog comes in and crushes the pillows, or the wind blows and screws up your kid's hair, or a pandemic happens and just changes everything.

If you're trying to pick up the pieces of your life since the pandemic occurred, I'm here to tell you that you're not alone. I think we all know how much it changed things and how many lives were lost. We mourn those poor people every day. But it's okay to mourn for the 'minor' things you lost in life, too. The jobs, the opportunities, the travel plans. The pandemic has caused me to come to an odd crossroad with my own profession (yes, blogging/writing is a profession, lest you think otherwise). I am grateful that my family is healthy and thriving, but there’s no denying that the pandemic was like a storm that blew through and left many people’s lives, jobs or mental health in shambles, myself included. I'm a writer who depends on travel and events in order to produce good content. I rely on social media to share posts. But over the past year, many people abandoned their social media accounts, and sites like Facebook and Instagram changed their algorithms so much that it’s difficult for any of my posts to be seen now. I have been covering grand openings, theme parks and entertainment venues for years, only to find that suddenly the grand opening I was writing about for years isn't happening, or they no longer want me to be there for the unveiling. Seems like a minor thing, but it's huge for me (that's like working for years on a project in your office, promoting it, sharing it, attending celebrations for it- only to find out that you'll never see the final product). 

I used to think that in order to be a successful blogger, thousands of people had to read my post and share it. I thought I needed to have a certain number of views to make a difference in the blogging world. But one thing I've discovered - especially now as I write these Momma Musings posts- is that what I really want as a writer is to reach people. And that means any number of people, not a mass number of people to gain popularity (although, that would be nice too, not gonna lie). If there are a handful of people reading this and they like it and it resonates with them or it helps them in some way- well, then that is what really matters. At least that's one thing I've learned during this pandemic. Maybe this new mindset won’t make me more money or make brands accept me, but at least I’ll know that I’m doing what I set out to from the start, which is to write something meaningful. It would be the highest honor to know that my words meant something to another human being or helped them in some way. 

Then you could call me an Influencer. 

Post playlist: Possibility, by Lykke Li; I Think I'm OKAY by Machine Gun Kelly, YUNGBLUD and Travis Barker

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