Honesty vs. oversharing: do you know where to draw the line?
That’s the question that’s being addressed by today’s guest poster, Lucy Wyndham.
For those of you who are new to Flourishing Freelancer, Lucy is a freelance writer who wrote a great post for us at the end of last year entitled 8 Ways to Make Money in Minutes.
Now, she’s taking on the fascinating topic of honesty vs. oversharing and where to draw the line as a blogger.
So, without further ado, I’ll hand this post over to Lucy!
**This post may contain affiliate links for products I love. If you make a purchase through one of these links, I will earn a commission at no extra cost to you. For my full disclaimer, please click here**
These days, honesty is important. Kelly Samuel, Social Media Director of Code Social, says that “Authenticity is the key component of what makes social media so successful for businesses”. That being said, there comes the point when your honesty turns to oversharing. How can you walk this fine line while staying true to your blogging voice?
Here are some tips:
Know Your Audience
When you write on your blog, you should know who you are talking to. Be able to imagine your audience. When you write, imagine their faces as they read your words. This will help you decide what to share, and what to keep private.
For example, if you were writing an email to your best friend, you might include some embarrassing details about a night out with friends. However, if you were at a dinner with your extended family, you may not share that same exact information. The deciding factor is your readership, so if you know who you’re writing for, you know how to tailor your content to your audience.
Let Your Purpose Guide You
What is the purpose of your blog? Keep this goal in mind when you infuse your blogs with honesty. For example, you could be writing a blog so that you establish yourself as an authority figure. If this is the case, you want to share details that highlight your strengths. Yes, you can include weaknesses so that you are relatable, but don’t go over the top.
Take Wise Risks
Your blog is like a piece of real estate in the vast online space. It is all yours. In this corner of the world, you have the power to let your real character and spirit shine. Don’t hold back. As long as it feels good and empowering to do so, say what is on your mind.
Be vulnerable. Your authenticity will help your readers relate to you. Neurobiologically, the human mind is designed to form bonds when a relationship meets specific criteria. When another human can tell that you are saying something from the heart, they may connect to what you say on a deep level.
Finding the right balance between authenticity and oversharing takes some practice. When you write a post, imagine your audience members’ faces. Keep your purpose in mind, and then be true to yourself and open up if it feels right.
My Thoughts on Honesty vs. Oversharing
I want to say a MASSIVE “Thank You” to Lucy for taking the time to write this post on such an interesting topic. In fact, I found it so interesting that I actually just wanted to add my own thoughts in here at the end but I’ll keep it really brief:
- Share what you are comfortable with – if you’re naturally a reserved person, don’t force yourself to share things you don’t want to. If, on the other hand, you’re open in real-life, share away!
- Stay true to your own style – Vix Meldrew is one of my absolute favourite bloggers and she shares EVERYTHING. And I mean everything. But she’s killing it in the blogging world because that’s her style and that’s why people love her. I’m not saying that she would lose followers if she stopped sharing as much but her 100% honest and transparent (and sometimes, naughty) content certainly gains her lots of deserved attention.
- Think about your audience – I know that Lucy mentioned this but I think it’s an important one. If I suddenly started talking about my sex life on here, people would be freaked out. It’s not the topic itself, it’s just not the place. It’s not why readers come to Flourishing Freelancer. However, if you want to start sharing stories and advice that don’t apply to your current blog’s audience, just start a new one! I have four blogs in total, each sharing different content. Don’t let the fact that you have a particular audience on your current blog stop you from pursuing another interest.
This guest post was written by Lucy Wyndham (thanks again, you’re a star!)
If you’re interested in submitting a guest post, check out our guidelines here and get in touch!
Wait, before you go...
...grab yourself a copy of the Ultimate Blogger Resource List (and boost your blog today!)