I've been graduated from high school for a whole, entire week so I feel like I can look back on my experience with wise, all knowing eyes...*snort* Yeah right! But in all seriousness, since I've graduated I've been thinking about something lately. Just how similar high school and the blogging world really are.
You'll always be jealous of 'that one girl'. Think back to your days of high school. Was there that one girl who had it all that you wanted? The perfect body, the cutest boy, the best wardrobe, the shiniest car, and the most gorgeous face? Yep, at my high school there was definitely that girl. Sometimes I'd like to think that the gnawing, jealous feeling goes away but to be honest, it really doesn't. That girl is always going to be in your life some time. At work. At college. In the family. And in the blogging world. I think we've definitely all suffered from 'blogger envy' at one point or another in our lives. We see these big, beautiful, blogs that are everything we dream of. The girls are successful, have tons of sponsors, endless closets full of beautiful clothing, and not to mention followers up the ying yang. Her blog layout is flawless and she gets 100+ comments on every post. Who wouldn't want to be that blogger? She's the girl in high school all over again- the one you thought you could shake. Even though you may never be able to shake this girl, it's important to remember this one thing- you are you and you will do the best you can do. She may have everything, but you have that something.
There are the cliques. No sillies, not the middle school age novels. You know, the jocks. The populars (or plastics if you want a Mean Girls reference, har har). The goths. The nerds. Sigh, the list goes on and on.... In high school I really wasn't in a clique. That was the nice part about not having any friends. You don't have a 'label' put on you and a stereotype to break. Cliques can be some of the meanest, heart breaking things though. When I was in middle school I was apart of one and breaking out of it was near impossible. I had a lot of grief over the way my friends treated me in the clique and after the clique, and not having a clique afterwards was definitely...scary. (hey I was thirteen, okay?) Like jealousy of 'that one girl' I wish I could say cliques go away after high school, but they don't either. I noticed blogger cliques from the very beginning. First of all, all blogs are divided into a category- bad, good, professional. They're all divided into a theme- fashion blogging, life style blogging, cooking blogging, mommy blogging, photography blogging... I've definitely noticed in the fashion blogging world that these cliques of fashion bloggers exist like elite clubs. These bloggers all get to go to special events for companies and for fashion weeks and are seen as unapproachable by newer, smaller bloggers. Why do we have all these subdivisions and groups in the blogging world? Why can't we all just be bloggers and be ourselves? Why do we feel like we need a special 'niche' to gain readers and gain attention? Why can't we all just be a united group- welcome to each other and our own, individual variations?
Bullying. I was never personally bullied in high school, thankfully. Sure, I was probably talked about behind my back, whispered about, and just plain out hated by some for no reason. Kind of like I am sometimes here in the blogging world. Receiving an anonymous, mean comment is the absolute worst. It can absolutely break anyone's morale and self esteem. Cyber bullying can be just as vicious and mean as real life bullying that occurs. I know I've pondered and been upset for days over something an anonymous commenter has said about me and my blog. I know I shouldn't, I know it's silly, but it still hurts. I am human, ya know? Like in high school, these people don't really know you. They only see the person you appear to be on the surface (I.e. blog photos, what you write about, twitter, ect). They base their assumptions on false pretenses, not daring or caring to know the real you. Sad, isn't it?
Competition, competition, competition. I used to be a really competitive person. I was a competitive swimmer and thirsted for victory and to be the very best. In high school, it's like that for a variety of things. Grades, sports, popularity...we all want to be the best at something. It's like that in the blogging world, as well. Sometimes I feel such a competition among bloggers. If there is a blogger say, your age. She has 1000 followers and you have 500. You may find (as I have found in the past) that because she's your same age, your blog should have the same success. You go over and over trying to figure out why she has more followers than you...what you did wrong, what you could do better, what needs to be changed. DON'T THINK LIKE THIS! There's no need for blogger competition. Each of us has an amazing blog with unique aspects that make it beautiful. There's no need to compare your blog with anther's- there's so many variants and aspects that determine the 'goodness' of a blog and it's not always measured in followers, comments, and traffic.
Not everything about high school is bad, just like not everything about blogging is bad. There's more good that comes out of both than bad. I know that for many, high school is an experience where you make life long friends who will always have your back through life's journey. Blogging has certainly brought and given me a chance at that. I have made the most incredible friends who I am so blessed to have in my life. Girls who are just like me. Not only that, but in high school and blogging....you find out a lot about yourself and who you are. I know four years doesn't seem like a long time for self discovery in the life span of 70+ years, but I feel like I've been learning about myself for double that long. You learn so much about yourself in high school. I'm without a doubt a different girl now than I was the first day of freshman year. Blogging has brought out so many sides of myself that I was blind to before, as well. It has shown me what I want to do with the rest of my life, what my individual voice is, and how to be brave-- no matter how scared I am.
But one difference that high school and blogging have? High school may end, you may out grow it...but with blogging, you take your blog on a journey with you; a never ending journey of discovery ♥