Photo by Darcy
I fought with her for months–that Voice in my head that argues that I’m “too small to have an impact.”
I’d created a home management binder that was actually helping my crazy, driven personality to make progress on goals AND find space to breathe. Even my neighbor noticed, “You’ve changed–you’re more peaceful!” I wanted nothing more than to share what was working for me, but The Voice kept me quiet for months. “So many other bloggers have covered that topic”, she said. “Others with better graphics, more resources to offer, and a much bigger audience.” My readers didn’t need me to add to the slew of home management posts…or did they?
Then it hit me: each of us–you and me–are more likely to to listen to the advice of a friend than a stranger, right? We’ll stop to hear a story from someone we care about before reading the blog of someone we don’t even know. A candid photo in a friend’s post draws us in more than the flashiest stock photo.
The simple fact is, every blogger, big or small, has influence, and it has very little to do with numbers. Your influence is based on the relationship you have with your readers. They have chosen to listen to you because of YOU–your voice, your perspective, you humor, you servant’s heart,your passion on that topic, or your experiences. They’ve connected with you, and they want (I may argue NEED) to hear what you have to say; and they want to hear it in your unique voice.
Do you believe that God made you unique, and that He’s pleased with you? He doesn’t look at you and say, “Woops, sure wish she had turned out more like so-and-so!” No, he looks at you and whispers, “Tell it, daughter–tell the story of how a personal God reached down and touched you.” And when you tell your story, your way, that’s when you have the most impact. The truth is, hearing it from you may finally move your readers to action or touch them deeper than anyone else.
Then The Voice cries, “But so few are listening! It’s a waste of your time!” Maybe you don’t doubt you have something to share, but you wonder if it’s worth the effort for such a small audience. But would you choose the way of a servant (the way of our Lord) and do the work for that one who needs to hear it? Even if they never respond? Even if it is simply a seed sown and someone else gets to reap the harvest? Are you willing? I pray that you are.
When I realized I needed to be willing to share my home management binder ideas with just one reader who might find them helpful, I finally sat down and started posting about it. The results were delightful–my relationship with a handful of my readers deepened and blossomed as I was willing to invest in them. My style of organization resonated with a few of them and they, too, were able to find some room to breathe. I found great joy and fulfillment in embracing the influence I did have.
How to Embrace the Influence God Has Given YOU:
- Engage – be faithful to answer comments and to dialogue with your readers. If you’re on Blogger, install the new comment threading feature to facilitate conversation. If you’re on WordPress, consider this plug-in which allows your readers to be notified of follow up comments.
- Serve – Look for ways you can serve your readers. Is there a post you’ve promised them, or a topic they’ve expressed interest in that you haven’t followed up on? Do the work and show them you care about them and not just SEO or more followers. Function as the part God has gifted you in. Are you good at giving directions? Share tutorials on how to do or make things.
- Pray – For God’s vision for your blog–ask for clarity on what He wants you to blog about. For me, it was the inspiration He gave me for my home management binder. What is it for you?
If you have one reader, that’s one person who’s chosen to listen to the song you are singing because she happens to like your voice. What has God called you to say to that one?
Challenge: For this next week, take great care of the people God puts right in front of you. When someone asks a question, take the time to give a thoughtful answer. Reply to each comment left and/or visit the blog of those who comment and leave a comment. The challenge is to make the effort and set aside time specifically for connecting with the readers you have.