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Getting Personal While Keeping Your Privacy

I had a reader ask me how to find the balance of getting personal on your blog while still keeping your privacy. I don’t think there is any right answer on this. I think it is more a matter of opinion. You are the only person who can know what you feel comfortable sharing.

It took me quite some time to start getting personal on this blog, and still I don’t consider it very personal in general. There are a couple topics that I just won’t discuss here. But other bloggers may discuss those topics a lot. To each their own.

There have been a couple posts I have hesitated on before publishing. Most recently this one. That was probably the most personal I got on this blog. I don’t regret the decision. I’m glad I shared because it turns out a lot of my readers have gone through the same thing. And it helped them to open up and share their own experience with me. I think that’s a lot of what blogging is about. Finding others similar to you, others you can relate to, others who share the same dreams, others who share the same struggles.

Outfit – Nail polish c/o In A Pretty Box (10% off w/JULIEANNART) Top: Victoria’s Secret
Shorts: F21, Boots: Steve Madden, Bracelets: Target
I think that sharing personal experiences helps readers feel closer to you. It makes you more “real.” So my advice is to share what you, and your loved ones, are comfortable with. If you feel yourself hesitating, hold off on pressing the “publish” button. Think it over. It’s a big decision to decide what you want to share with absolutely anyone who has access to your blog. Don’t feel pressured. Follow your heart.
Do you get personal on your blog? Why or why not? xo JA
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Join the discussion 18 Comments

  • Oh my! I’ve been dealing with this so much latly! My mother in law wants me to be less personal and she calls and yells at me. No fun! Thank you for this–so refreshing to be reminded that its my blog and my call (note I don’t write about my mother in law online. She’s mad over pictures of me and stories about my personal struggles)

    • Emily says:

      I once got a call from my MIL too! She wasn’t mad at least, but two other friends of hers had read my blog and called her to tell me that I should not post about my personal life. It’s no fun when other people want to tell you what to write about!

  • tahnie says:

    Thanks for sharing this! I’m a very open person and honest about sharing my struggles, however some things I keep quiet about. The beautiful balance of blogging! 😉


  • Birgit says:

    I am a rather private person in the blogosphere myself and I am often amazed at how much some bloggers do share, especially when it comes to family I’d be more than hesitant to share information or even photos. Of course, that’s just me and every blogger needs to decide for herself how much she opens up to her readers.

  • gina says:

    Sometimes I wish no one I knew in “real life” read my blog…I could be a lot more open. When I discuss something super personal, I get an email from my dad wanting to discuss – ha! Not at all what I wanted to happen :). But, I do find that the times I have been super personal, I have received such positive feedback from readers. There is definitely a balance of being personal so that people can relate without giving too much of yourself over to the internet.

  • Nessa says:

    I am sometimes, but I also hide a lot because people I know in real life (including my ex) know about my blog. I’d rather be more honest. I like having the thoughts and memories in writing.

  • Great advice and just what I needed to hear 🙂 thanks! I sometimes worry about what Gina said (even on FB). It’s not even so much for the really personal stuff! Example posting: “gee that spider on the wall scared the crud out of me and gave me the heebie jeebies” *enter one friend tagging me in pictures of spiders for a week and more heebie jeebies* =

  • lolly says:

    Transitioning to a public blog was difficult for me at first, coming from a free-for-all Livejournal history. I experienced a few hiccups from getting personal, lost some friends b/c of it (ended up being for the best) but overall I don’t regret any personal information I’ve shared. I’ve opened up about relationships, my hardships growing up, suicide attempts, and ALL of the issues with my father and I was overwhelmed with the amount of positive responses. SO many unexpected e-mails of readers and friends who thanked me for opening up b/c it helped them feel comfortable sharing their own stories.

    Like you said, it’s up to the writer and how comfortable they are with sharing things. I, for one, think it’s one of my greatest blogging strengths – 🙂 You look beautiful and comfy in these photos! Xo

  • Cara Howard says:

    You are SO beautiful girlfriend, I love this post. xo

  • You are soooo photogenic and beautiful!

    This post helps me a lot. I’m always torn about what to post and what not to, and now I have somewhere to go back and read if I’m feeling a bit lost!


  • Lejla says:

    I totally understand what are you talking about. It happens to me all the time.
    Love the outfit! You are so beautiful 🙂

    Maybe you could check out my blog and if you’d like maybe follow or not. It’s all up to you.
    Anyways, I love your blog and will definitely come back here again soon 🙂
    Greetings from Sarajevo <3
    Lejla <3

  • This is great! It hard sometimes to find the balance, but I’m glad you said that it’s personal and everyone’s comfort level is different. Very true!

  • Lynzy says:

    You look absolutely beautiful in that first picture! I agree with you on this one. There is quite a bit that I don’t talk about on my blog simply because it remains personal that way. However, there are times that I reveal a little more so that I can connect with my readers ! 🙂


  • This is something I’ve definitely struggled with on the Pretty Box blog. We’re a small business, so when I say “we” I really do mean “we.” However, I’m the one who posts on the blog… I decided to take a cue from the handmade artists I work with and you.

    Buying handmade is personal. You’re buying a story from someone. I wanted that sense of ease a community coming across in my subscription company and my blog. So, I’ve decided to keep the “we” for company announcements and newsletters and give my blog followers something a bit more personal from me. The blogs I’m drawn to *cough*JULIEANNART*cough* do this, too, and you know what they say about doing what you know. 🙂

  • Emily says:

    It is hard sometimes to find a balance, but I’ve never regretted posting about my personal struggles. I find most people can relate, and their support and any encouragement they find from me is more than worth it. I do make sure to never post when mad, and to think about how it could affect others.

  • Bev Feldman says:

    It is definitely a balance, especially since like your blog, mine is connected to my business. There are some things that I don’t feel are appropriate for me (nor am I comfortable) to share, but there are certainly things about my life I want to share with my readers. Yesterday I actually shared some very personal news, which I admitted on my blog felt a tad strange sharing, but because it is going to have a huge impact on my life (and my business) it felt appropriate. I do enjoy reading your more personal stories, but understand why there are some thing you won’t share.

    Bev @ Linkouture

  • I share, I am practicing to be more open about who I am. And I am using my blog to express how I feel when I otherwise cannot express it in real life. Though, as you and many of your other followers have said – there is a balance. Sometimes it’s hard to figure out where the line goes for too personal. Sometimes there are things I wish I could share on my blog, because I need to get it out of my system or I want someone to notice something, or I am just lacking a friend to talk to about the particular topic.. But, as much as I want to be honest about who I am, I also think that there are certain topics that are inappropriate to write about on your blog. Some things are too personal.

  • Angela says:

    Oh yes, I get personal on my blog and it always feels “right” and strange at the same time. Folks that I know in real life and people like my Mom read my blog. They are the ones who make me not want to get too personal. If a bunch of strangers were the readers, I’d let it ALL hang out there. So, I try to keep a balance. Staying true to who I am, but not writing stuff that I might someday regret.

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