I’ve long desired to publish regularly on this site, but outside of a company-wide blogging challenge or the occasional post regarding a presentation I’d delivered, I’d never committed to publishing here regularly. For two reasons, that changed in December.
First, after nearly three years as a team lead, I stepped back into a development-focused role at Automattic. This happened last fall, and the long process of unwinding my responsibilities as team lead has slowly given me more freedom. Out of a leadership role and now part of a larger team, I carry less cognitive burden over my job when I’m not working. I’m also less exhausted of writing now that my responsibilities aren’t exercised almost exclusively by sending emails and posting to internal discussions. Together, these factors provided the mental capacity to support this new habit.
Second, and more importantly, one of my most-insurmountable blockers was always the idea that there was no audience for what I produced. As a result, my response was always one of, “Why bother finishing this, no one will ever read it” and so I abandoned many drafts, some that were quite close to publication. Now, I don’t believe that an audience for my writing suddenly turned up around Christmas demanding new posts–far from it, my analytics show. Rather, I finally decided that it just wasn’t important if no one ever read a word I published here. Instead, the catharsis that comes from sharing my thoughts is satisfaction enough. Most of my posts are not meant for the benefit of others, which is clear from my style and subject matter. I feel better after posting–a perceptible mental relief–even though nothing I’ve written is particularly insightful, emotional, or meaningful–and that’s what’s important. That some are undoubtedly gaining something from my writing is merely a bonus (no offense intended).