This is a question I’ve thought about quite a bit, especially in the past couple of months. I’ve been blogging less often, and spending less time reading blogs, too, because I simply don’t have the time in the face of other priorities. The question is a good one, though, because it gets to the root of why we are blogging in the first place. Finding an answer can help to focus our efforts and make us much more efficient.
One way to look at this is purely financial: how much are we making per hour spent on blogging? How does this compare to your day job? If you’re making $25 an hour at your day job, but only making an average of $5 an hour blogging, is it worth it to you? Don’t answer yet, because I’m sure many of you will start off by saying how you’re not blogging for money. Income is a terrific incentive, though, and many bloggers continue blogging because of the financial benefits, even if they didn’t start out with that goal in mind.
The financial aspect of things is a powerful one. I’m amazed sometimes by the lengths I see people going to make money on the internet. I’m not talking about people who are making big bucks, but those who are making relatively small amounts, say, less than a couple hundred per month. Sure, this amount can be significant for a lot of people, but is the time spent earning this money actually worth it?
If you spend 10 hours per week filling out surveys, etc, on get-paid-to sites and it’s making you $50 per week, is it worth it? There are a number of people out there doing this and often making less than the $5 per hour that this example gives. Why not just get a part time job that makes more than that? Even figuring in taxes (which you’ll eventually have to do with your blogging income, too), most part time jobs will pay more and for less work. If you work at a job that makes tips, like delivering pizzas, tending bar, or parking cars, the amount per hour of work is likely to be significantly higher.
I understand that there are other, less tangible benefits to blogging. It can be a nice stress relief as well as a way to develop a network of friends around the world. I like this aspect of blogging a lot. At the same time, it’s appropriate to ask how much return you’re getting from the time you spend on your blog, or in any other pursuit. If it’s becoming a hassle for you and it requires a lot of time that doesn’t necessarily result in a significant benefit, then it’s time to reevaluate.
Ultimately, blogging is just like any other part-time job or hobby. There are reasons why you do it. As your life changes, take another look at the time you devote to these activities and make adjustments if the fit is no longer right. Remember that you are in the driver’s seat.