For me, and I imagine for most of my fellow bloggers, the key to enjoying your blogging experience is to figure out what works and what doesn’t work for you. I’ll be celebrating my second blogoversary in a couple of months and I know so much of these first two years has been about finding my way – trying new things and discarding them if they aren’t working for me, sometimes tweaking them slightly along the way just to make sure I can’t figure out a way to make things work.
One of the areas where I think I’ve learned the most about myself as a blogger is when it comes to blogging while traveling. When I first started blogging, there was no way I was going to go off and leave my blog sitting silently for days or weeks while I was traveling, so I would pack up my laptop, my planners, and anything I thought I might possibly need in order to blog while away from home. I hadn’t mastered the art of scheduling posts ahead of time at that point (and I still haven’t, but let’s not go there right now, lol), so in my overly ambitious mind, I was going to vacation all day and then fit in a little blogging at night.
I’m not even sure why I thought this would work because those who know me know that when I plan trips for myself, I pack them full of activities (tours, shows, shopping, museums, whatever) and rarely have much down time. I like to go, go, go and then crash and burn once I get back to the hotel at night, lol. So there’s little chance I’m going to get any reading done while I’m traveling, much less write any blog posts. So yeah, I lugged around my laptop and books that whole trip for no reason.
The second trip I took, I was determined to learn from my mistakes so I didn’t even pack my laptop. I still had that fear of leaving my blog sitting quietly while I was gone though, so this time I did get my act together and scheduled some content to post while I was away. So instead of packing a laptop, I just packed an iPad and decided I would confine my blogging time to the train ride and would just use that time to basically blog hop and keep up with comments on my posts as they went up. Unfortunately that was a fail for me as well. I fell asleep for most of the train ride in both directions and just never got around to even opening the iPad once I reached my destination.
While this was, in theory, much more practical for me than lugging my laptop all over the place, it ultimately still wasn’t the best course of action, especially since once I got home, I had days and days’ worth of comments to catch up on from the posts that had gone up. Plus, because I’m still working on my procrastination and scheduling skills, and even though I had content ready for while I was gone, I had no content ready to go once I returned so I still managed to create stress for myself, lol. My trip was in late October and I felt like it took me until nearly December to really get myself back on track.
I’m not sure when I’ll be taking my next trip, but after these two experiences, I’ve finally come around to the idea that, for me anyway, it’s perfectly okay to let my blog sit for a few days. It has taken me two years to get to this point, but I’m thinking the best course of action for me is going to be to just make a short blog post letting people know I’ll be traveling for a few days and that I’ll resume blogging once I return. At the same time, I will be doing my best to schedule content ahead – not to post while I’m gone — but instead, to actually begin posting once I return home. That way I have a few days to get re-settled and recover from my travels and have the flexibility to blog hop and return comments without feeling like I’m falling behind.
We’ll see how that plan plays out, but I feel like it’s the least stressful and most practical option for me based on my travel and blogging habits.
And you’ll notice that all of this is self-inflicted. I know the blogging community is totally cool with me taking a hiatus whenever I need to. It has just been me putting unnecessary pressure on myself, which is apparently what I do, lol.
So what about you? Is blogging while traveling a “do” or a “don’t” for you? Have you learned any tips along the way that have made it possible for you to blog while traveling? Or are you okay with taking a mini hiatus while vacationing?