Bookish Discussion

How I Avoid Blog Burn Outs

I have been blogging since March, 2014 and while I’ve gone on a few hiatuses since starting my original blog, I don’t think I was ever really burnt out of blogging. There have been times when I was close to a blog burn out, but I have managed to work through these periods and I haven’t experienced anything like that for quite some time.

In today’s post, I’ll be discussing how I’ve avoided the dreaded blog burn out, and while this isn’t a “tip post” exactly, I do hope that my own experiences and methods will prove to be helpful for some of you, at least.


scheduling ahead of time

The most important step I’d taken to avoid feeling burnt out was to start scheduling posts ahead of time. While I wouldn’t call it a burn out, there are times when I’m not in the mood to blog. Granted, in most cases, I could force myself to sit down and write something, but I believe that would lead to a proper burn out, which is something I always try to avoid. On top of that, I don’t always have the time or mind-space to come up with new ideas and give them proper attention to make a good post out of them.

Thankfully, at other times, I can and want to write multiple posts in a couple of days, which makes up for the times when I just can’t concentrate on blogging. Typically, I have posts scheduled well into the future. I know scheduling is not for everyone, but I still recommend trying it out, as it has taken out all the stress from blogging for me. For those who have a predictable schedule – e.g. university students, like myself – I recommend trying to prepare for the periods when you know there’s a good chance you won’t feel up to blogging. For instance, I always make sure to have posts scheduled throughout my exam period.


posting about what I want

The second most important thing was to realize that this is my space on the internet, and as such, I can do whatever I want with it. Even a few years ago, I used to feel a pressure to write reviews, simply because they are “expected” from book bloggers. I kept seeing all the wonderfully detailed, convincing reviews my favorite bloggers were writing, and I wanted to create content like that.

However, I grew to recognize that it’s more important to create posts I’m actually enjoying working on than to force myself to write something I have little interest in writing. I still review books, but I tend to write mini reviews these days that I group together based on the genre of the books, or another aspect of them. One of my favorite things I’ve started is ranking books written by a given author; these posts contain nearly full length reviews, but I enjoy myself way more than I ever did when I wrote single reviews.

As a whole, though, I post a lot more recommendations and discussions than reviews, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. Part of what I love about blogging is that I get to talk to you all in the comments – or on your blogs – and recommendations, discussions, and even mini reviews tend to create more of a discussion than simple reviews.

Another thing I find important when it comes to creating content is to write about whatever I am interested in, even if it’s not just books. I really appreciate it when bloggers share their favorites or hobbies on their blogs that are not necessarily related to reading. In our case, Sabrina and I both loved working on our folklore post, in which we paired Taylor’s songs with some of our favorite novels, and as such we connected an album we loved with reading.


Letting Go of ARCs

Let’s go back to the topic of reviews for a moment! Knowing that ARC reviews bring in more views than backlist reviews – do they still, though? I don’t necessarily think so. – I requested ARCs left and right. Being a smaller blogger, I obviously didn’t get everything I requested, but it was enough to make me feel like reading was a chore. When I had to get to certain titles by a certain date, reading and reviewing started to feel like a job, albeit one I was not paid to do.

These days, I rarely – if ever – request ARCs, and I’m much happier this way. That being said, this is not me saying that “ARCs are bad!” I know many incredible reviewers who request and review tons and tons of ARCs, and I love their blogs and all the effort they put into their reviews. Just because something doesn’t work for me, it can still work very well for others.


Coming Up With Post Ideas

When it comes to coming up with post ideas, mine tend to come pretty naturally to me, but I’ve also been inspired by other bloggers before. (Do not copy other bloggers, though! That’s not what I’m saying.) For example, a few months ago, I was inspired by Caitlin’s tweet to write a post where I shared my all time favorite pieces of media. Then, Emily – who really enjoyed the post/liked the idea – asked for permission to create her own list. This is what I’d consider a respectful way to be inspired, but usually it’s more subtle than this.

For those of you who are as forgetful as I am, I recommend writing down all your ideas, even the ones you are not 1000% satisfied with; you can always start working on reshaping these ideas whenever you are in the mood to blog. I note down every idea I have into my phone, which I always have with me, even though some of these are pretty silly and will never see the light of day.


Let’s chat!

Do you suffer from blog burn outs? Do you have any tips for avoiding them? Do my methods work for you, or not?

55 thoughts on “How I Avoid Blog Burn Outs

  1. I made one decision when I started my book blog, and that was to only review books that I would read anyway. So when I found out about sights like netgally or booksirens I decided to us them like a free amazon and choose the books I would want to read any way.
    This works for both me as a reader and the author wanting a review, if I think I am going to like a book from the start, I’m more likely to give it a good review at the end. For the writer they get a review from someone the book is aimed at.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have never ever been able to schedule posts ahead of time for too long. Just a couple of times over these years. If I’m inspired and end up writing a few blog posts at a time I’m just too excited and want to publish them as soon as possible!

    BUT Letting go of ARCs has totally improved my ability to keep talking about books online. I used to always check Netgalley for new releases to request. But now I very occasionally check to see if there’s something that genuinely interests me. It’s healthier that way, and I don’t stress as much about deadlines and reviews.

    Slowing down with reviews as a whole has helped too, because I’m not thinking all the time about this review I need to write.

    To avoid burnouts I think in general we need to be kinder to ourselves and understand our limits.*easier said than done!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, I’m able to schedule, BUT I do relate to being excited and wanting to post stuff immediately after writing it. I tend to reorganize the scheduled posts in case I have something I feel like I *must* post asap. 🙂

      I think that’s a good way to use Netgalley! Same about reviews – they are somehow more stressful to write, esp. if the words are just not coming, than other posts.

      I agree with that, but yes, it is SO HARD to be kind to ourselves, haha.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I also stopped requesting ARCs this year unless it’s something that I am really looking forward to read or if the book really, really piqued my interest. Also the same with blog tours. It helped me also to balance my reading list. It came to a point last year when I felt like reading and blogging are “work” because of the added responsibility since I’m a mood reader through and through. LOL.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love this post, Veronika! I’d say I have never experienced a blogging burnout either- there were times I had to step back but it’s always because I have too much on my plate instead of blogging. I think scheduling ahead also really helpful for me to avoid burnout; like you, I can write multiple post in a day when I’m inspired so I always managed to schedule multiple posts when I’m int ~the zone~. I also think posting whatever I like, as in whatever topics inspired me/I love helped a lot as it keeps me excited for my content whatever the response might be 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! ❤ Same – stepping away was always a choice I had to make for life reasons, not something I had to do because I was burnt out. Honestly, I think knowing when to step away because otherwise we’d become overwhelmed with everything is the best thing we can do as bloggers. 🙂 Yes, it helps a lot to be able to post whatever we want! And I really enjoy your non bookish posts, like the film / show ones you do. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I used to burn out pretty frequently back in my earlier days of blogging, but now I rarely do, and it’s mostly for the reasons you mentioned! I rarely ever request ARC’s anymore, to keep me from stressing over deadlines. I also schedule like you said. I do also write blog ideas down in my phone. I totally relate to being forgetful lol!

    Side note, but I’m glad you found me asking for permission respectful! That actually means a lot. I get very anxious about copying other blogger’s work unintentionally, so that means a lot ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thank you for these suggestions! I’ve also stopped requesting ARCs now unless I really want them and am sure I’ll love them!
    Scheduling has helped me so much, especially because of college assignments that I have have to do that seem to sneak up on me.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Scheduling is such a great way to have content prepared in advance! I’ve used it a lot and I will continue doing so.
    I really relate to feeling the pressure to write reviews, I feel the same. I used to write quite a lot of them on my Hungarian blog, but I stopped doing it and I don’t think I’ll write one in the near future. I also don’t really read them, so. 😁 I just prefer mini reviews, written in separate posts or wrap-ups. But kudos to anyone who can write reviews for every book they read.
    Great discussion post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, I relate to not really reading reviews – I will read reviews by the bloggers I follow, especially the ones whose reviews are really high quality, but they are probably my least favorite kind of post to read.. and write. And yes, mini reviews are much more interesting, imo!

      Thank you! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. This is some really useful advice!
    I’ve definitely found that starting to just post what I want has really helped with burn out, as I’ve come to realise I just don’t enjoy writing reviews, so I stopped doing them when I started my new blog. And I’m definitely trying to embrace scheduling these days, and making sure I write lots of posts when I have the time, so I have some ready for when I’m busier. November and December are always busy months at my job, and I’ll be doing NaNoWriMo in November, so I’ve been getting lots of posts ready this past month!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Great ideas! I am a firm believer in scheduling ahead because you never know what the future might bring, and that way you are not stressed out if nothing is ready! And I agree with the ARCs. They can be fun, but they definitely stress me out. I like reading a my own pace and not feeling like I have to get something done immediately.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Scheduling posts in advance is the main way I avoid burnout. That way, if I don’t have the time to check on my blog, I don’t get stressed about not posting something. And last year, I decided to change my posting schedule to post less and follow a template of sorts for when to post things when the writing bug hits.

    I’m definitely feeling a bit off burnout with ARCs right now. Reading in general lately has been hard for me; so reading as a whole has been a struggle and the idea of picking up ARCs that are due feels like a major chore. I’m hoping that will change in a bit but who knows!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Same about scheduling! I didn’t schedule when I started blogging years ago, and I was a lot more stressed about the blog back then. And I’m all about quality over quantity – while some can post tons countless posts a month, the quality of my posts would go down if I tried that. And I’d be way more stressed. :/

      I hope your feelings about ARCs will change – but I do relate to that. Next to my uni deadlines, I just can’t handle ARC deadlines. :/

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I am jealous your post ideas come naturally. Mine are so forced, and it’s why I have taken a break from discussion posts. I am OK with ARCs, because I still read a lot, and I have let go of hitting every release date.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re one of those bloggers who writes great reviews, imo, so I’m glad you enjoy reading ARCs and reviewing in general. 😀 Pity about the discussions because I enjoyed those, but I definitely think that we shouldn’t force ourselves to work on posts we aren’t interested in.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I have to say, I was so excited to read this post from the title alone, since I’ve been super unmotivated to blog recently and have been considering whether it’s blogger burnout. Honestly though, I don’t think it is. I think I’m busy and overwhelmed, and even though I WANT to be blogging and blog hopping, I just don’t have the energy to do so most of the time. And I think that the pressure I’m putting on myself to do these things when I don’t have the energy is what’s making this feel like a burnout.

    I think for me, whenever I feel on the verge of a burnout, the first thing I like to do is take a break. Whether it’s an official hiatus, or just a week of two of focusing on activities other than blogging, I find that time away can be a great way to recharge and get back the spark that was missing when it came to blogging.

    Right now we’re in the middle of our semester, and I think that things have just gotten a bit overwhelming. Strangely enough, we’re doing better this year than we have during the past two fall semesters, and I actually think it’s because we DIDN’T schedule out posts. When we scheduled in the past, we’d then feel a pressure to post at a specific time, or on a given schedule. But now we just post when we have time, and that lack of pressure has been doing wonders for us!

    Anyways, just reading this post has me excited about blogging again! Hopefully that feeling sticks around for the next few months, even as this semester drags on!

    Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Malka, it makes me so happy that you enjoyed my post and that it made you more excited about blogging. 🙂

      I relate to being overwhelmed with uni – that’s why I’ve been so late with answering to comments and blog-hopping. I just don’t have the energy / inclination when I’m already sitting in front of the laptop for hours, participating in those godawful online seminars, lmao. I’m also working on posts much slower than usual, so it’s great that I have quite a few scheduled ahead of time.

      I’m glad that you’re doing better than last semester, though!! I understand that scheduling doesn’t work for everyone, and I’m glad that this way you feel less pressured to work on the blog. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Great post, Veronika! Scheduling posts has been extremely helpful for me, and making sure I stay organised. Sometimes I fall short of post ideas but other times I feel really inspired to blog. I’m glad all these methods work for you!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Schedules always helped me until I had a kid lol I try to stick to certain days for posting but my son is the boss. Sometimes I just don’t have the time. But I do agree everyone should give schedules a try. Also, I definitely benefitted from not getting arcs. Review copies stress me out! Great post 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Scheduling saved my little blogger’s ass LOL – so I get what you’re saying. But to me, it’s more than simply having a series of posts ready for when one isn’t sure they will be able to create content. My scheduling involves an actual spreadsheet for all the post I mean to write, and another one with my daily routine. It’s not going to work for everyone, but I found out I can’t work on my blog if I don’t schedule all my blogging-related activities. (I mean, sometimes I have to move my tasks around, but I end up accomplishing what I set my sight on – MOST of the times).

    You’re very good at writing those non-review posts, and it’s clear that you love doing them. Writing full reviews for each and every book IS exhausting, and can be a reason for burn-out. I do avoid it because I read far less books than the average blogger, so it’s only fair that I review them all, but I understand not having the time and energy to review every single book and not even having a desire to. There are many ways to promote books.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh yeah, I do know that your way of scheduling is a lot more complex than what I mentioned / do myself. I actually tried a detailed daily schedule, with workouts and everything else included, but it didn’t work for me. 🙈 I’m glad schedules work well for you, though.

      Ah, thank you so much!! It means a lot that you enjoy my non-review posts and think they’re good for promotion. 🙂

      Like

  16. Omg Veronika, I love this so much and it’s so so so helpful. This year has been super sporaddic for me in terms of blogging and I’ve been going through burnout quite a bit.

    Scheduling is definitely something I need to get back to. Right now I have no posts planned and I haven’t had the time nor mental energy to write posts, which I’m why I’m so distant. So having posts scheduled a few weeks in advance is super helpful. Also the ARC tip, it’s become so hard. I love the feeling of reading early but my mood reading is so all over the place that I struggle to read them on time. But also like we’re not getting paid to read them so why should there be all this stress??

    I also love your point about just doing what you want!! I think I always sort of have, but recently I’ve just been going with the flow and doing random ideas. Ya know if it brings me joy haha.

    Such a lovely post xoxoxox

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Ruby!! 💛 I’m sorry this year hasn’t been the best for you blogging-wise. I do hope you’ll be in the mood to blog more and that you’re not stressing over this until then. 💛

      Ugh, I feel you on the mood reading! I’m a huge mood reader, sometimes I won’t be in the mood for a book even if it’s my most awaited release. There are books I bought a few months ago that I still haven’t read, because I lost interest in that genre for now. The same happened with review copies in the past too, which was super-frustrating! I ended up either posting my review late – which makes me feel SO GUILTY – or forcing myself to read a book I wasn’t in the mood for, which sometimes negatively affected my enjoyment.

      Ah, I love that – we should all make posts that bring us joy, I think. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  17. I loved this post! Yes, scheduling stuff ahead of time is so important. When I get a good idea for a post for a specific holiday/season/topic, I’ll go ahead and get it all ready to go even if the publication date is many months away.

    Having that buffer of posts makes all the difference in the world. Sometimes I start a new month only to realize that 30-70% of the posts for it are all ready to go. That’s always a nice feeling.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. These are all such great tips! I’ve had so many burnouts in my 9 years of blogging but I could never give up blogging altogether because I love the community way too much. I think the one thing that helps me the most with blogging is trying to calm down and not worry too much about having a strict schedule. If I worry too much about missing deadlines, it takes the fun right out of blogging.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!! 🙂 I think that’s a really good tip! I feel like we all have to accept that sometimes we can’t post as much (or at all!) either because of a burnout or because we’re busy with other things. If we stress over this too much, blogging becomes a chore which it shouldn’t be. 🙂

      Like

  19. Great list and I totally agree with you on scheduling. Scheduling is my best friend and I would never be able to post on a regular schedule without it! I definitely agree with you on writing what you want rather than what you perceive is expected of you too.

    If I could go back in time and give my beginner-blogger-self some advice on avoiding blogger burnout, I would say ‘don’t stress about posting something late’ (because no one will judge) and ‘know when to let something go’. I recently decided to retire my secondary blog. It was a passion project that, over time, had become a chore that was not just affecting my blogging enjoyment but my reading enjoyment too. So, I decided to devote all my attention to my primary blog and my only regret is that I didn’t retire the secondary blog earlier.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Scheduling is so useful for me too. 😀

      I agree with that advice 1000%. I used to post every day or nearly every day, and I felt bad when I had to change my schedule. We shouldn’t feel bad about that or about posting something late. I’m sorry your secondary blog started to feel like a chore, but I’m glad you were able to make a choice that ultimately made you happy and less stressed. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I love these tips so, so much Veronika, thank you for sharing them ❤ I'm also very big on scheduling, but lately I've tried to give myself some slack with it, too. I used to post 4 times a week when I started, then went down to 3 and now, it's even too much for me to handle at times. I'm learning that, if I just can't do it, I shouldn't force it either, otherwise it's going to make me hate blogging altogether and I don't want that to happen.
    Honestly, I think the best advice is, like you said it perfectly, to write whatever you want and to let yourself write the posts you like the most, too. I often feel like I should force myself to put out some kind of content, but… sometimes I just don't feel like it or don't have the inspiration to. I need to be better at that and to just… not force myself too much 🙂
    Thank you for this wonderful post ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, so glad you enjoyed the post. ❤ I definitely feel you on that – I used to post every day when I started blogging, but I had to give that up. Now we post only twice most weeks, and I’m okay with that. I’m also a big believer of quality over quantity, and I personally couldn’t make more posts without ruining the quality or burning out.
      I feel like – for me at least – there’s always a pressure to write certain kind of posts that we think would do well, but I’m genuinely bad at guessing what will do well, haha, so I’ve given up on that.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Funny, but you know – it’s mostly scheduling that got me burnt out a couple of times! But that’s just cause I used to post too often I think. Now I post once a week and I’d love to schedule but I’m always too tired to do two posts and I only have time on Sundays anyway. So I just end up posting on Sundays xD you are very right about letting go of ARCs though. Or like, picking up super little. I still haven’t got out of the whole ARC quagmire (cause I’m grabby-fingers omg…) But I totally agree, they do add a certain stress to it, for sure.
    I have to say, I never really got back after the 2019 burnout. I have never really posted a discussion post since, cause I feel like, what’s the point anymore xD I don’t have the time to visit other blogs anymore, so my posts just go unread. But I do still like to support books I love 🙂 it’s also why I only ever post reviews for the books that got 4 or 5 stars. All the rest, I don’t feel like putting in that time anymore.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s very relatable to me – we posts twice a week, but because there’s two of us here, it actually only means once a week per person. I guess we could push ourselves and post more but neither of us wants to get burnt out of blogging.
      I’m sorry that you couldn’t fully come back from your burn outs. :/ But I’m glad that you’re still able to post about the books you love and support them. 😀

      Like

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