Sharing Personal Information & Stories on Your Blog

Today’s BBC mentor is…ME!

{I want to add a little disclaimer to this post, since it’s made up of my own opinions and viewpoints – I read tons of blog posts on the “right way” to blog, and here’s what I think: Blog the way you want to blog. There is a certain amount of etiquette that we go by in life, and the same should go for blogging. Do not feel like you are doing it “wrong” just because you read something to the contrary. If you’re unsure, ask!}

When I visit a blog and see a project I really enjoy, I usually start poking around and seeing what else there is for me there. Beautiful projects are great, but what really sucks me in are the personal stories. The stories I can read and say “I do that too!” or “that sounds just like my kid!” or “I lost my dad too,” and instantly I feel connected to that blogger, who has now become memorable to me. No matter how “big” the blog, I want to know that there is still a real person on the other side.

I receive emails every week regarding my adoption story. Sometimes asking for advice, sometimes just sharing their stories, sometimes thanking me for sharing mine. These women felt connected to me, because we shared a similar bond of adoption.

There are different ways you can integrate personal information into your blog.

Share stories from your daily life.
Share something funny that happened to you at the grocery store or the silly things your kids say. Share a memory from your childhood or something that’s been bugging you lately. Share something that you love, like your favorite pair of jeans or your beauty routine. Give your readers a chance to see you in your daily life.

source

In the middle of a bunch of projects and not ready to post on any of them yet? Share a humorous “day in the life of me” post. Don’t be afraid to share the project fails, too.

Share your struggles and personal battles.
Are you struggling with something; a personal illness or the death of a loved one? Do you battle with your weight or self esteem? Blog about it. Let your readers journey with you. You never know how sharing your story could touch another person’s heart who is going through the same thing.

Sharing personal stories lets people get to you, the person behind the blog, and I’ve found that more people reach out in a meaningful way. Looking at my list of favorite blogs, I have several that I consider “friends.” And thinking about when or why I started following them, it was not only a fabulous room makeover or crafty project, it was something personal they’d shared that I connected with.

You are more than just a DIYer. You are more than just a crafter. You are a mom, or a daughter, or a grandmother, or a sister, or a wife, or a friend, or in some cases, all of these. Share that with your readers!

Sharing your story is a great way to educate others.
One of the biggest reasons I chose to share my adoption journey on my blog is to educate others. Your blog is a forum in which you have the right to speak your mind and bring something to the table that no one else can – your personal experiences. Lots of people know adoption exists, but it is my hope to spread the word on the who, what, how and why, to give a face to adoption and to share the blessings as well as the trials.

How much is too much?
I feel that only you can answer this question for your blog. Some bloggers are an open book. Some are very private and not comfortable sharing even their real names, much less photos. You should only share as much as you are comfortable with.

Practice Moderation – Don’t share too much, too fast. 
When a new reader comes to your blog, they probably know very little, if anything, about you. Personal stories are a great way for your readers to get to know you, but they don’t just want to know about you. They want to know that you are someone they can like, connect with, admire or learn from.

Unless you are a personal, diary style, blog, like my friend Noelle, people still come to your blog to see your makeovers, DIY projects, crafts and recipes. You can easily combine the two by sharing a personal anecdote before getting into your project, or intertwined throughout your post. For example, I love to cook, but I can’t spend even five minutes in the kitchen uninterrupted. One day while trying out a new recipe, it seemed nothing was going right. I worked that all in to my recipe post…all silly little things like my kids fighting and burning my hand on the pan, but the feedback I got? “I’ve totally been there!”

Be prepared to stand by your words.
I once shared a funny story about my son finding the Desitin and smearing it on his face, complete with a photo.

In the post, I stated that I probably should have been disciplining him instead of taking his picture. I had a reader comment that indeed I was in the wrong because I never should have left that out where he could get to it. While this particular reader most likely had good intentions, immediately I felt the sting of Mommy shame. However, I stood by my post and replied that of course it was my mistake to leave it out, but sometimes as a Mommy you just have to laugh!

Some things to consider… Not all of your readers are the same. Consider this when publishing about controversial subjects (unless you like that sort of thing!). 


Be cautious about sharing too many identifying details, like your address, your children’s school or sports teams. If you post photos of your house, blur out the address in Photoshop. 

Use your own judgment when publishing photos of your family, especially your children. Since the dawn of Pinterest, even these photos may be pinned, also copied, printed etc. I’ve heard of people having their projects and even their children claimed as someone else’s.

I hope these tips have helped you to think a little differently about how you blog. What’s your story? I want to read it!

Kristin

Kristin

Owner at Yellow Bliss Road
Hi! I'm Kristin and I'm the creative mind behind Yellow Bliss Road, where you'll find tons of recipes, free printables, and a little decor and DIY thrown in for good measure. Life can be complicated, so I am all about simplifying wherever I can - from food to decor to DIY - because I believe that it doesn't have to be elaborate or extravagant to be amazing. I am a single adoptive mom with a daughter in Preschool and a son in Kindergarten. My kids are a handful, I'm exhausted and most days my house is a mess - and I'm okay with that!
Kristin
Kristin
Kristin

Latest posts by Kristin (see all)

Kristin

Comments

  1. says

    I think this is great advise. When I first started blogging I was all over the place. DIY, personal stories, venting..you name it. Now I try to keep it a nice balance. I did have to do away with any personal stories of my older boy. In fact, he asked me to remove them. Some kids at school caught wind of my blog and started calling him Debbiedoos…and it was kinda of embarrassing for him. I get that and respected it. When you have older children you do have to be careful about what you write on your blog. Now if I want to write about him or share a pic, I ask him first. No more personal Alex stories though. And boy do I have a few I would love to share LOL!

  2. says

    Great post, thank you. I do find that I remember the “person behind the blog” more when I read something about their daily life or history. I also find myself visiting their blog more often too. Fantastic advice!

  3. says

    Great post, Kristin! I love your Desitin Story…I would have taken a picture of that happening too. :) I love reading personal stories that I can relate to on the blogs I follow. This series has been so great!!

    Megan

  4. says

    I always wonder if it’s not quite safe to post pictures of my children, and mention his name in my blog. I want to blog as if my readers are my friends and we’re just chatting away, but I can’t, really. It’s a fine line to navigate, with being personable enough to attract readers without feeling too vulnerable. Great post!

  5. says

    Thanks, Kristin, all great advice. I’m happy to say much is how I do my blog, when I can do my blog. The personal health struggle thing is my current woe.
    craftythriftydecoratingwifemom.wordpress.com

  6. says

    Great tips! I definitely think it’s important to put something personal into your blog posts. I read a lot of food blogs and my favourite ones are the ones where the blogger’s personality shines through, whether it’s because they share personal stories or just because they’re funny or witty and it shows in their writing. That’s what I like, otherwise I might as well just look up recipes in cookbooks. I also think it’s important to share as much as you’re comfortable with – that’s why I use a pseudonym. I guess it may seem counterproductive to be worried about online privacy and then create a blog where the point is to have other people read what you write but I figured I’d start out with what I was comfortable with and could always share more if I felt like it later. Thought provoking post – thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>