Blog for Mental Health 2012 Project
Clearly, I am a mental health blogger. I have been dedicated to sharing my experiences with bipolar disorder for nearly seven months now. That is my primary focus, though I have a tendency to get a little off topic from time to time. Not only is this therapeutic for me, but I hope that is can be an inspiration for others who suffer with mental health issues. This is especially the ones who do so in silence. Every voice is important, as it collects and makes our community’s voice stronger.
This is the premise for Pendulum, as written in the About This Blog page:
Many people suffering from Bipolar Disorder do so in silence. Prior to this blog, I could have included myself. This blog is meant for others to experience living with this disorder the way I, and many others, do. It is also for others to find their voice here and to know that they are not alone in their struggle. Lastly, it is to encourage dialogue and community between bipolar bloggers.
Sometimes it’s interesting. Sometimes it’s sad and at other times it sounds crazy. Grab the pendulum, and hold on for dear life. Otherwise, you just might end up in the pit.
This morning, I found myself interested in an official blogging project to raise awareness for mental health education. I sifted through Google for awhile, unable to find anything like it. And I thought, “Why don’t I start one?” It would be easy! All I would need to do is produce a graphic and some instructions.
The badge above is featured on Pendulum’s homepage, because I am dedicated to continue blogging throughout 2012 for mental health. So, here are the rules.
1.) Take the pledge by copy and pasting the following into a post featuring “Blog for Mental Health 2012″.
I pledge my commitment to the Blog for Mental Health 2012 Project. I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others. By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health. I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma.
2.) Link back to the person who pledged you.
3.) Write a short biography of your mental health, and what this means to you.
I have been symptomatic of Bipolar Disorder and Anxiety for most of my life. I was incorrectly diagnosed with MDD in my teens, and suffered in silence. After my son was born in 2008, I went on to experience a severe relapse in symptoms considered to be postpartum psychosis. Several months later, I sought treatment and was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder II.
That was almost three years ago now. Today, I am experiencing the longest stable state I’ve ever had, going on three months now. I am still hesitant to say that I am in remission.
This pledge is my opportunity to commit to mental health awareness. I can publicly display this badge to instantly tell my audience what this is all about. And, I can encourage others within the mental health community that have a Dx to do the same.
4.) Pledge five others.
I am pledging give of my fellow bloggers who have stood with me, and have proven their medal in my eyes as mental health bloggers.
- Ruby – I Was Just Thinking…
- FracturedAngel – The Mirth of Despair
- Monday – Manic Monday
- Vivien – Manic Muses
- Sarah – bi[polar] Curious
If you happen upon this without being pledged, I still pledge you. Feel free to take the pledge! Promote awareness!
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I’m so excited to read that my messages are having a positive influence on others. I haven’t posted in awhile, due to life events and other things. But, I see how recent this is, and it makes me want to blog again. Thank you for your kindness and inspiration.
Howdy! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an established blog.
Is it very hard to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal
but I can figure things out pretty fast. I’m thinking about creating my own but I’m not sure where to begin. Do you have any ideas or suggestions?
No problem. I’m happy to help where I can.
Here are a few things that I tell newer bloggers.
1.) Pick a clean layout that showcases your content the best.
A lot of people are eager to kind of “over customize” their blogs with a lot of busy graphics. It might look cool, but if it’s too busy, then it will put the reader off. If you’re looking to showcase graphics or any kind of art, then choose the layout that best represents your art. If it’s about the content, stories, opinions, or anything else you intend to write, then make sure the blog is highlighting the basic points well.
2.) Target your content
Many new bloggers are eager to share their ideas with the world. I think that’s fantastic, and I’m always eager to read new opinions, ideas, and thoughts. But, many bloggers go wrong with a kind of “Seinfeld-ish” approach.
If you’re not familiar with the show, I’ll break it down for you. As Jerry Seinfeld was saying, “It’s a show about nothing”, but it was actually just an eclectic show about everything. It worked so well on TV, because it had content that the broadest audience could relate to with just the right amount of continuity.
With blogging, that’s a bad idea. While everyone wants to entice the largest audience with their content, a blog about “everything” is sure to lose an audience. The goal is to have a blog about “something” that might be applicable to the largest audience. Something that affects everyone.
3.) Write for your audience
I’m not saying “sell out”. I’m saying that while a certain topic might be interesting to you, it might not be for the greater majority.
I knew this one girl many years ago who basically used her blog like a diary. Honestly, I only read it because my ex was screwing her, and I was looking for hardcore evidence to prove it (meanwhile actually finding evidence that she was stalking the man who would later become my husband). But, the details of her daily life were downright boring. And her opinions were idiotic. All in all, a terrible read, unless a person is digging for dirt.
4.) Be cautious about any intimate details you reveal in your content
Get ready for blow back, because if your blog is controversial (and the best ones usually are), then you have to expect hate mail. Take it as a compliment. It reminds me of this one scene in the movie “Private Parts”, about Howard Stern’s career. They were talking about this radio shows ratings and they said that the average Howard Stern hater actually listened longer than the fans. Why? Because they were engaged.
Also, avoid posting anything that you’d be embarrassed by in the long run. My blog is very intimate, as I reveal very personal details about my disorder and how that affects my life. The greater majority of people I encounter in my real life aren’t even aware that I have a disorder. Hence, a pen name works out pretty well for me. But, I do expect that I will be exposed one day, and I’m ready for that.
5.) Networking is preferable
Networking can be considered shameless promotion of your blog and pretty much whoring it out. Don’t let that deter you, because that’s not the point. If you have something to say, say it loud. If it takes a little (or even a lot) of self-promotion to get yourself seen and heard, then do it.
You want to make the right connections, especially in the community of bloggers who have similar content. So, keep up with the more popular blogs in your category. Don’t hesitate to make connections and throw your two cents in now and again. Remember, every interesting comment you make on another blog is an opportunity to represent your blog.
That’s about all I can think of. Good luck! And feel free to drop and in let me know how it’s going! I’ll try to keep up, but admittedly, I’m a little scarce in the community as of late.
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