I'm going to start my exploration of what I get out of blogging by touching on what I don't get out of it. I'm not trying to change lives here. I'm not trying to reach a massive audience. I don't want to make waves. It doesn't matter to me if my voice "matters". I don't live for a high hit count (though I'll admit I do feel pretty happy when I get feedback on any of my posts). I'm not trying to make a living through advertisements. I have made a total of fifty cents, and that is more than I'd anticipated.
So why am I doing this?
I have posted more in the past two months than I did in the entire year prior, but I have also been more mentally, physically, and socially active in the past two months than I was in the several months previous. That isn't to say that I am just going out to find things to blog about. Quite the opposite. The blog (like the old school scrapbook diary I used to keep prior) serves as a mooring point in a world where I am otherwise so inundated by activities and information that I can't tell up from down. Condensing a targeted daily experience into a blog post allows me to impose some sort of mental structure on my day, and makes the whole world seem more manageable and less terrifying. Blogging anchors me, keeps me grounded, and serves a double purpose of letting family and friends have a little window into my world.
Blogging can also help with some of the information overload I find myself experiencing. Apart from the regular stimulus of human interaction, the modern individual is now adrift in an endless sea of text messages, advertisements, music, videos and memes. Things are no longer interesting, they're Pinteresting. People no longer talk, they tweet. Images Flickr by, and our Faces are an open Book for all to read. (ok, ok, I'll stop). Keeping a blog, for me, can be a means of organizing some of the information I am being inundated with, and sharing it in a more structured way that makes sense to me, personally. The downside of this, of course, is that in the very act of adding to the information milieu, I am furthering the problem of information overload for others.
Is keeping a blog as a means of anchoring one's own experiences in a chaotic and often confusing world a good idea, or an exercise in futility? I don't know, but for now, I will continue to enjoy putting my thoughts, feelings, activities, projects, and creative moments down here, to keep them straight for me, and to share with anyone who may have an interest.