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Living Life vs Just Writing About It

There’s a disparity in the blogging community between the number of people writing about living and the number of people out actually living.

It’s great when people are so enthused about lifestyle design and minimalism and travel and entrepreneurship that they decide to spend a good portion of their day sharing what they’ve learned with the blogosphere. This ‘paying it forward’ mentality is exactly what the world needs, and these people have the right idea about how to build strong relationships over time.

That said, there is also an unfortunate trend toward regurgitation and ‘me-too’ blogging out there right now (and maybe always), where people get so excited about a topic, they forget to actually do anything before writing about it (and attempting to become experts or gurus on the subject).

This isn’t the most terrible thing in the world — I think most of us started out this way at the beginning of our blogging careers — but the difference between people who stick around and make something of themselves and the folks who just kind of disappear (due to a lack of readership, lack of things to write about or lack of interest on their part) is that the first group go out and live life, while the second just stays in and writes about living.

If you’re living life, you’re experiencing new things, solving new problems and adding to the conversation.

If you’re writing about living life, you’re adding your opinion to the conversation, which is valuable, but because you’re working off information that already exists, you’re not really adding anything new.

This is definitely not meant to be criticism to anyone out there that hasn’t hit their stride yet, but I wanted to say something about it in hopes of nudging along anyone who’s been sitting on their hands, afraid to or forgetting to move forward.

I sincerely hope you stick around and continue to share what you’ve learned with the rest of us once you’ve started to get out and really live, because that’s when the good stuff starts spilling out.

Either way, if you have to choose living or blogging, choose living. You may not be Internet-famous, but you’ll be much happier in the end.

Update: January 26, 2017

This is a topic that I’ve addressed many times and in many ways over the years: the disparity between those who are living certain lifestyles, doing certain types of research, engaged in original thought processes, and those who are simply soaking up what’s already out there and regurgitating it with a new masthead and name at the bottom.

It’s still the case today the 99% of what you find on a given topic will be by people who are creating content for the sake of content, or folks who are excited about a field of inquiry but who stop there; at being curious.

This isn’t a huge deal, but it is worth bringing up from time to time, as I think many people don’t realize that there’s something beyond the rewriting stage, and that you get better results, and more you-shaped results, if you expound upon what’s already there and use it as a launchpad, rather than a ceiling.