1. Thou shalt share the shit out of your fellow blogger
It’s not a good idea to share your own shit a thousand times a day. Instead, share other people’s shit. They can share yours. A rising tide lifts all boats. You already know this one.
2. Thou shalt not sell out and try to emulate someone else’s success
Write what YOU want to write. Write what only YOU can write.
Replace this fear: “If I write what I really want to write, no one will want to read it.”
With this fear: “If I become super successful at writing the same shit as everyone else, I will never have any option but to keep writing exactly the sort of thing I never wanted to write in the first place.”
Start out on the right foot by only doing what YOU want to do. That way it’s a win/win situation regardless of how far and fast you climb towards your goals.
3. Thou shalt not call someone a troll just because they disagree with you
The internet is a big place full of people with different opinions. This is not a bad thing. Homogeny = boring. We grow as writers/humans/non-assholes when we surround ourselves with people who challenge our thoughts and disagree with us. Learn to take criticism and hear perspectives different than your own. You don’t have to change your mind, but you SHOULD give yourself the opportunity to broaden your horizons.
4. Thou shalt not lose sight of why you’re doing this in the first place
What was the reason for your blog? Stay true to it unless it naturally evolves into something else you are equally passionate about. Don’t look at other people’s trajectories and decide to pursue THEIR goals. That’s just gross.
5. Thou shalt not form little takedown groups that gang up on other bloggers
Don’t EVER use your influence (of any size) as a weapon to take someone else down just because you feel threatened by their success/their comfort level with themselves, or believe they’re somehow encroaching on your internet territory. Unless that person is true scum—like a pedophile. Otherwise, the internet is a big enough place to put your hands together, say NAMASTE, and walk away.
6. Thou shalt not resent other people’s accomplishments or wins
Seriously. This is a plague for bloggers, even blogger friends. Learn to be legitimately happy when good things happen to your friends and you will save yourself so much energy that would otherwise be used to think such unproductive thoughts as “why her? Why not me?” and “why hasn’t this happened to me yet?” and “why do I even bother?”
Don’t fall victim to small world syndrome— that is, don’t forget that you’re just one human out of 7 billion. Everyone is doing different things. Some people are billionaires, some people live in one-bedroom shanties. Some people are astronauts, some people are surfers. It seriously has nothing to do with you if your friend wins a Pulitzer. Be happy for them. Then get back to your own life. No one else is going to live it for you.
7. Thou shalt not ask the entire internet to feel sorry for you
We all have hard times, we all go through shit, and we’re all allowed to feel sorry for ourselves from time to time. But never ever ever go onto someone else’s blog post that says “we’re having a baby!” and be like “wow. Good for you. I wish I wasn’t alone in life.” It is awkward and rude and gross. Don’t. Do. It.
8. Thou shalt not steal people’s shit
Nothing. Don’t copy their logo, their verbage, their successful schtick. If I make up a hashtag like #AusSauna to take photos of myself in the heat and then you take your name and say #BethSauna and do the same thing, I will cut you. Let people have their things.
9. Thou shalt not be a frenemie
Don’t suck up to people or cozy up to them for the purpose of gaining something. Never enter into a dialogue or friendship with the intention of gaining something. Don’t blindly message people to do shit for you when you’ve never done anything for them. And never drop someone just because they don’t live up to some expectation you built for them.
10. Thou shalt not let other people make you feel like shit
Someone is always going to have a problem with you. If you blog about traveling, someone will complain that you’re flaunting your wealth. If you blog about aging, someone will criticize you for not talking about THE ISSUES. Even now, I might be making you feel like shit. Don’t let me. The world seems to revolve around people doing things to tear each other down. Don’t let them. Unless it’s me. Just kidding. I’m here to help you. Maybe.
All in all: Don’t be an asshole.
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