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The Blogger Recognition Award

About The Award

The Blogger Recognition Award is an award given to bloggers by bloggers. It aims to help bloggers’ get their work recognized by and promoted to other bloggers. As with any award, there are some rules for nominees –

* Thank the blogger who nominated you for the nomination and link to their blog.

* Write a blog post on your site displaying the award that describes why you started your blog

* Write two pieces of advice you have for new bloggers

* Nominate and notify 15 more bloggers

So here it goes! I’m incredibly honored to have been nominated by Julie over at Dark Blue Journal. She’s a fantastic blogger who writes about minimalism, the environment, and real life. She is such a talented writer and her posts are always so well researched and writes in such a real and beautiful way. If you’re not already reading her blog, you need to! Plus, she's super sweet and just a lovely person all around!

What Brought Me to Blogging:

I have to admit, I started blogging because I was curious and bored and needed an outlet for my thoughts. My blog has been through many forms before it eventually became That Weird Girl Life (first it was a bucket list blog, then a travel blog. I don’t even travel that much! What was I thinking?? Who would read a travel blog from someone who doesn’t GO ANYWHERE???), but I’m happy on what I’m focusing on now- mental health, the occasional adventure (again, when do I travel??), and real life things. I love being able to write about what I want to write and finding other people who can relate to what I’ve gone through or who just enjoy what random things I scribble out. It’s honestly such a joy and an incredible creative outlet. If only I could do this for a living! (*Crosses fingers and hopes a genie grants her wish*)

Advice for New Bloggers:

I have a few suggestions:

#1. Do it because you love it. If you end up making money through it, great, but don’t forget the real reason why you wanted to blog in the first place. Whether is was to have an outlet to speak your mind, write about a passion, or advocate, never let go of that.

#2: Your blog will never be perfect. It will always be in a constant state of change, just like you, as you learn and grow. So don’t think you have to know the exact plan for your blog is before you start. Just start it, or you never will! Blogs change and grow, for the better. You will find your niche (or be a crazy niche-less blogger like me!), your passion, your voice, you’ll take or find better photographs, make better graphics, promote your blog better. It just takes time and experience. So don’t be afraid- just start and go for it!

My Nominations:

(In no particular order, because I admire each and every one of these people and their blogs! Also, I apologize if you've been nominated before or don't want to do the tag! Just know I tagged you because I think highly of you all! 💙)

1. The Dee Who Lived: Daisy is such a great blogger and the embodiment of a Hufflepuff! (I bet she’s a great finder, too!) If you’re a Harry Potter fan, or just a fan of good blogs, you’ll love her! (Plus, she has a Youtube channel, too)

2. Frantasmorgia: Frantasmorgia has a fran-tastic (I know, I’m sorry) blog where she writes about true crime and other spooky and creepy things. It’s so different from so many other blogs out there, so if you’re in the mood for something bone-chilling, you need to check out her blog.

3. Nicole San Miguel: If you need a travel and lifestyle blog to read, Nicole’s is great! She writes about her journeys and adventures traveling and has some great product reviews. Also, her travel pictures are gorgeous!

4. Zombie Goddess Beauty: Cassie is a jack of all trades. She’s a blogger and a fantastic artist/graphic designer and has her own Etsy shop. She writes about everything from beauty, art, Wicca, and geeky stuff!

5. Chimmyville: Kim, also known as Kimmy or Chimmykins), is a lifestyle blogger who writes about just everything! Her posts are so real and relatable. Trust me, you’ll love her and her blog! (Also, she’s a fellow Ravenclaw!)

6. Black Pistachio: Athina is not only a lifestyle blogger, but she also blogs about beauty and mental health. She writes about a little bit of everything but has some really well written posts about a variety of very real and important subjects. If you haven’t read her blog yet, you need to!

7. In the Flux: Payton is the blogger behind the blog In the Flux, a lifestyle blog. She also writes about mental health, along with other posts to help improve yourself. Her blog is so underrated, so I highly suggest you check it out!

8. Rooting Branches: Anne is a lifestyle blogger who writes about mental health, beauty, books, and food. Her writing is honest and real and her blog, Rooting Branches, has a little bit for everyone, including some short stories to read!

9. Mxrshmallow Queen: Eleanor is a blogger whose blog is filled with color and cuteness, realness and honesty. She’s a lifestyle blogger who doesn’t shy away from what’s real and what matters. She’s also a Youtuber, so check her out there!

10. The Little Dismaid: Arielle is a not only a Disney, lifestyle, and mental health blogger, but she’s also an author too! She knows the ins and outs of Disney World and its parks, and her blog is a Disney fan’s dream!

11. Single Vegas Girl: If you’re single and on a dating app, you NEED to read Marie’s blog. From horrible and hilarious online dating profiles to awkward dates, her blog is hilarious and gets real about the modern world of dating. Plus, she also writes about her travels abroad too!

12. La La's Book Reviews: Lauren over at Lala’s Book Reviews is your one stop shop for all things Y.A. books! From reviews, to book suggestions, new releases, and book tags (plus some bookish unboxing posts! Love those!), her blog is perfect for book lovers, whether you love Y.A. or not! (But you know you do!)

13. Aoibhneas Travels: Katie is hilarious and knows how to make a travel blog her own. From reviewing NYC street foods to exploring haunted places, she’ll give you the real deal on everything you need to know about where she’s exploring (and what she’s eating!)

14. Sometimes I Write: Steph is a fairly new blogger, but I love her writing style already! She wrote a really awesome post about how being active on social media doesn’t mean that you’re unhappy, which was so thought provoking. Give her a follow and tell her to keep on blogging!

15. Miss Blogs-A-Bit: Miss Blogs-A-Bit’s blog is literally about whatever she wants to blog a bit about! From the brilliant post about not wanting to have children (and to stop asking her about it, which I completely related to), to travel and lifestyle (trip to the biggest Lush store, anyone?), she’s a blogger you need to be subscribed to!

And there you have it! That was my post dedicated to the Blogger Recognition Award! I'm so honored that Julie nominated me! I hope someone on my list of nominations keeps this tag going, because I'd love to read their tags. So if I tagged you, let me know if you did the tag, because I want to read and comment! And let me know if you've ever been nominated for the Blogger Recognition Award or any other blogger award. I'd love to know what your thoughts on blogger awards/tags are!

Stay Weird,

Small Ways to Support Your Fellow Bloggers

I’m not an expert blogger, by any means. Not at all. But some things I have noticed about blogging (besides it being fun!), is the blogging community. Your family and friends may be supportive of your blog, but you will find no one more supportive of your blog than a fellow blogger. The blogging community as a whole is so encouraging, kind, and uplifting. We’re all here to blog: to share our ideas, thoughts, stories, and more and the special part of our community is that we all are encouraging each other to create more content, promote it, and succeed. It’s honestly such a beautiful thing, and I’m ashamed to say that I didn’t participate in it as much as I should have when I first started blogging. Now that I’m in it more, I can’t believe I ever thought I would have the support I needed to keep writing my blog or even find anyone who would want to read it, without being part of the blogging community! (I had to learn the hard way that people just don’t “discover” your blog, haha)

I’ve compiled a list of little ways to support your fellow bloggers. Yes, these are small ideas, but even the tiniest little thing can mean so much to a blogger. A shoutout, a tag on Twitter, or even a simple comment on your blog can help promote it, let more people see it and get more views, but most importantly, be the biggest sign of encouragement to keep doing what you love (which is blogging. We’re all on the same page, right?)

So to the whole blogging community who have opened their arms to me, thank you for being so supportive, sweet, and encouraging. No matter the niche, I’ve found all of the bloggers I’ve met to be the nicest and sweetest people ever. I just wish we didn’t live all around the world and could meet up and just say hello and just have a compliment battle about our blogs. This post is for you, fellow bloggers!
  • Retweet your fellow blogger’s blog posts- it’s such a little thing, but it helps other people who may not see your blog take notice of it. It’s also a little stamp of approval too. A kind of “I wouldn’t retweet this if I personally didn’t like it or wasn’t interested in it” thing.
  • Engage with your fellow bloggers- you never know what conversations or even friendships you might strike up with just a comment on someone’s blog or tweet!
  • Find and enjoy your blogging niche community. And if you don’t have a niche (like me), enjoy the WHOLE blogging community and discover LOTS of new blogs and bloggers!
  • Follow Fridays! If you don’t know what Follow Fridays are, it’s where you tag bloggers you love and think other people should discover and follow on Twitter, using the hashtag #FF or #followfriday. I don’t do this as often as I should, but it’s really such an honor to have someone tag you! Plus, it’s another great way to gain more followers and discover new bloggers and their blogs!
  • Follow blogging retweet accounts and engage in Comment/Twitter/Facebook/Instagram/Bloglovin’/Wordpress/Pinterest etc. follow threads on Twitter. Numbers aren’t everything but they can really help a blogger succeed. If you want more followers on your blog or on your social media accounts, blogging retweet follow threads or other blogger’s similar Twitter threads are the way to do it.
  • Buy and support bloggers’ products and promote them on social media and your blog. Lots of bloggers are artists, writers, and more and sell their wares online. If you love an item of theirs, promote it and tag them so others can discover their blog/store/products!
  • Join a bloggers collab Pinterest board. This can be a great one to promote your blog and help promote others’ blogs as well. And it’s a fun way to engage with other bloggers about similar shared interests and blogs too!
  • Pin your fellow bloggers blogs on Pinterest- more exposure for your fellow blogger! Plus, now you’ll have their blog pinned on one of your Pinterest board so you’ll always have it (I hate it when I lose a good blog post I just read!)
  • Comment on people’s blogs! So simple and obvious, but it means so much, honestly. Actually read the blog post and give your opinion, thoughts, and feedback. And don’t just do it for the comment back (come on, people) but because you liked the post or it genuinely interested you or taught you something.
  • Be positive and encouraging! Blogging is a great hobby (and for some lucky people, a career. I’m super jelly), but it takes effort and sometimes you get burnout or start to doubt yourself. Sometimes the only people who understand this are other bloggers, so be there for each other when they’re struggling, offer ideas, and motivate them. And if they are feeling great about their blogging and content, congratulate them and encourage them to keep on doing an amazing job! It’s all part of being in the community. You support each other through the good AND the bad.
Don’t worry if you don’t or can’t do all of these. I try to do as much as I can, but you can’t comment on all the blogs! Just do what you can, and support your lovely fellow bloggers. You know they’d do the same for you!

Fellow bloggers, what are some ways you support your fellow bloggers? I know my list is missing a lot, but these are the ones I thought of. I’d love to know the ones that you use! Let me know in the comments!

Stay Weird,

How Much I Share About My Mental Health On My Blog?

I always wonder what I should be sharing online. Do I need to share my whole life, like some people do? Or do I remain a tad vague, only giving out a few things, peppered here or there, giving me an air of mystery? (Am I an international spy who poses as someone trying to make it as a blogger? Kind of a lame cover, but you’ll never know, not even if you read my blog and try to uncover all the clues I may or may not have been sprinkling throughout it all these years…)

I admire the people who can open up and talk about their lives without shame. And not only that, but make great blog posts about it. Turn their experiences or mistakes into a lesson that helps us all, in relatable and entertaining ways. But the ones I truly, truly admire, are the ones who can do that with their mental health experiences. To turn something that may have been been very traumatic, troubling, and horrible into something that others can relate to, identify with, learn from, and educate others. I think that is so commendable and incredibly valuable to everyone in the mental health community. But...

In Carrie Bradshaw voice while typing on her laptop and gazing out the window: That makes me wonder: as much as I want to be a mental health advocate, how much of my mental health experience should I share online?

I love reading other people’s mental health blogs. The fact that they can be so open about their issues is inspiring and admirable, and something I want to do. Eventually. Maybe. Because I’m not sure if I’m there yet. Or if I ever will be.

You might have noticed that I’ve shared a few of my experience on my blog here. That I have OCD, depression, anxiety, panic disorder, and oh, the list goes on and on! (Or seems to anyway) I’ve also shared my experiences with going to numerous mental health professionals over the years, EMDR therapy, a letter to my younger self about having mental health, and so on (click here to find all these posts on my mental health tag!). But I’ve been holding back. There are some things that are easy to talk about with mental health, and other things… not so much.

So where do I go from here? Do I open up like the brave mental health advocate bloggers I read or do I keep tiptoeing around the big issues and write about what I find easy(ish) to talk about?

I think the answer can be both. I think there are some things that I may never want to talk about on my blog. Some things may be just too painful to recount or even admit. But there are of course some things I want to share and hopefully will be willing to share one day. I’ve mentioned having OCD and panic disorder, but I haven’t really talked about my years long battle with emetophobia (aka the fear of vomiting). Nor have I talked about my short stint with agoraphobia (now THAT was fun. I’m kidding. It was awful. Duh). But I want to. I really do.

And maybe I can some day. But I might have to work up to it first. Slowly, but I think I can get there. And I have to think that being a mental health advocate isn’t just about sharing the nitty gritty of their experiences with mental health. It’s about opening up the conversation, breaking down that taboo, and reminding people that it’s way more common than we think. And we should be TALKING about it, not keeping it all inside like I’ve been doing my entire life.

So, in my own, vague way, I hope that my stories that I share are helping and opening up that communication with others, and that in the future, I can be even more open and therefore help more people who may be struggling with the very same things I too once struggled with.

But not so open that you immediately think upon reading my blog, “GIRL, shut it down, Emily! Shut down this Pandora’s box of crazy!” Because no one really wants to go THAT deep into someone’s brain, right?? Especially my brain. No one wants to Inception this large clump of gray matter, trust me.

I think a combination of where I am now with blogging about my mental health and being more open about it (but not being completely open, because honestly, there are just some things I probably will never share with anyone except for a close friend, family member, or a mental health professional) and meeting between the two will be a perfect mix of things I can share and hopefully inspire others with similar mental health issues to speak up and talk about their issues.

Let’s just hope I can get the courage to get there soon! But for now, I’ll share with you what I can and maybe, just maybe, they might help someone. 💜

*But please note, just because I may be sharing certain things about my own mental health issues, doesn’t mean you have to. Sharing your own mental health experiences is up to you. If you want to open up, great. If not, that’s entirely your decision. Some people are happier not talking about it and only sharing it with certain, select people. Either of these choices are perfectly normal and okay. You do what’s comfortable and healthy for you!

For people who talk or blog about mental health issues, how honest and open are you with your experiences? Do you share everything, or only select things? Or do you keep it all to yourself? (You have that right! It’s not anyone’s business unless you want it to be!) Let me know in the comments!

Stay Weird,