In case you haven’t noticed by my current radio silence, I have decided to take some time off from blogging. I have no idea whether this will be permanent, or only temporary, but it is time.
When I started blogging back in 2009, I loved having a voice in the fashion community. I would spend my open hours scanning Style.com, and twisting runway looks into more budget and office-friendly realities. Working a 12 hour day, then coming home to polyvore, and editing, and writing till 1 am was my way of relaxing. It was therapeutic to have a passion outside of the office. I met amazing friends from industry contacts to fellow bloggers balancing the work-blog-life scales. Blogger brunches were a highlight of my calendar. Spending my time scanning through twitter, perfecting that pose, instagramming every moment worth sharing, it was all things I loved and looked forward to. Until it became exhausting, a second job, a hassle. I felt like I NEEDED to get that post up, I NEEDED to hit that Google Analytic goal. I would get upset when a post I worked on for hours only hit a minimal view count. My excitement for sharing my point of view was morphed into a competitive spirit that took the fun out of blogging.
Around a year ago, I remember meeting some blogger girls for dinner. From the moment we sat down at the table, it was tweeting “we’re having so much fun” to instagramming the cocktails we ordered to “oh wait, don’t take a bite yet, my shot was blurry.” Almost the entire meal was spent digitally sharing rather than connecting in person. That’s when blogging turned for me. I realized how many people (including me) are ignoring their dinner mate for that instagram filter, or checking back their likes instead of actually watching the sunset. I wasn’t being present at all.
I honestly believe technology has become an addiction. And while I still can’t fathom being the person who doesn’t check their social media, I am trying to limit my use. Honestly, my boyfriend rarely even checks his gmail let alone his Facebook or instagram. I found myself being jealous at his lack of need for a growing follower count.
I also saw the change in blogs. What went from opinions and content shifted to ℅, gifted, sponsored posts. Many bloggers have their site as their full time job, so I understand why they jump at sponsored posts. But for a fashion blog to post about gum, or house cleaning product, just sounded so out of place on their site. Where twitter was for conversations it now is a way to share affiliate links to click to your pinterest to that “wish list” item that reallllly isn’t on your list to buy, but more like has a $30 commission rate. Instagram where it once was a place to capture a moment, is now a place to post your DSLR, photoshop edited outfit post, link to your collage, and once again, monetize. I found myself scrolling through instagram at edited photos, new handbags, trips to Europe and I wasn’t happy with my amazing life.
If you’ve followed me on social media you know I have dealt with a crippling health issue the last year. My health is what brought me home to Hawaii, it’s what made me quit my job to take care of my health, to replace brunch and drinks dates with 5 doctors appointments a week. There were days I could not make my own meals, shower on my own, or really even walk without assistance. I’ve finally found the light at the end of the tunnel with a diagnosis and will be getting surgery this coming Monday. To have these issues and yet have brands emailing me “Lauren, it has been 2 days since your product has arrived, why have you not instagrammed them yet?” Well, it was once again, pressure and exhaustion that I did not need.
In the past few weeks I have un-followed many on instagram, twitter, and beyond who post selfie after ℅ shot, after sponsored post. I have filled my feed with photographers, lifestyle bloggers, interior design. People who share a passion other than their selfie. I have moved on from the #ootd mirror shot, and I could not be happier. More importantly, I have put my phone in my purse and left it there. I have had date night without the phone on the table, I have enjoyed a sunset without snapping a photo, I have woken up and not immediately checked my notifications.
My goal for 2014 is to be more present in my life and the best way I know how to do that is to live in my moment, not others’ snapped online. I still feel I check social media too often, but I’m aware and I’m trying to change. For now, I’ll be posting over at LilikoiLo.tumblr.com. It’s a work in progress of a website, but it will be more general thoughts, feelings, photos not only fashion and beauty. I thank you all who have joined me in this amazing journey of blogging. I have met amazing people who I still consider friends to this date. Blogging taught me how to find my own voice and I hope it use it for good in the future. In the mean time, if you have a tumblr or love someone else’s tumblr please comment below with the link or tweet it to me, so I may follow you!
Thank you all dear readers. xoxo