The Joy of Blogging: Applause without the Burdens of Fame
A celebration of 2,000,000 views for this blog, and appreciation to my readers.
Posted Feb 23, 2014
Thanks, hugs and applause all go first to you, my readers.
You are the people with whom I so much enjoy sharing my thoughts. Just as throwing a ball would mean little without someone to catch it, blog writing feels like a worthwhile project to me because you choose to read what I write. Thank you from the depths of my heart for sharing this activity with me.
Further thanks to those of you who have been augmenting our mutual blogging experience by posting your comments in response to my articles. Readers’ comments convert blogging from monologue into dialogue. I learn something from every comment that you post.
I am especially appreciative of the group of you who regularly respond to new comments added to the articles I’ve written on borderline personality disorder, borderline mothers, and on narcissism. The comments there have become a treasure chest of shared burgeoning understandings of these disorders. Your combined wisdom has taught me so much!
More applause for the joys of blogging, and what keeps me writing.
I must confess that I also hugely appreciate those of you who have clicked Like, posted my articles to StumbleUpon or LinkedIN or Google's circles, tweeted, emailed or otherwise shared your enthusiasm for a post I’ve written with others.
While I don’t like to admit it, positive feedback in these ways hugely motivates me to keep myself chained to my desk writing instead of more often hanging out with my hubby, going out to hit tennis balls, playing with my grandchildren, playing my violin or guitar, reading books, or walking outside in the sunshine.
Additional kudos to my editor, Lybi Ma, and the rest of the staff who work so hard keep this Psychology Today website high quality, both as a place for readers to learn and as a place for writers to share.
Fame can have costs.
As clinical psychologist Christina Villareal of San Francisco writes in her thoughtful blog, when fame puts celebrities in the public spotlight, the costs can easily outweigh the gains. Dr. Villareal writes:
“Even the most grounded actors, musicians, professional athletes, and high-ranking officials are vulnerable to the deleterious effects of being in the media spotlight. In his research, Jib Fowles, author of Star Struck: Celebrity Performers and the American Public (Smithsonian Institute Press), found that the average age of death for celebrities overall, was 58, compared to an average of 72 years for other Americans. His findings also revealed that celebrities are almost four times more likely to kill themselves than the average American.”
Fame can ruin personal relationships. The more larger-than-life a person begins to appear to others, or, even worse, to themselves as per the post I have written about what I call tall man syndrome, the harder it becomes to enjoy the blessings of ordinary family and friendship.
Bloggers, by contrast with visible celebrities, can enjoy ever-more readers without ever suffering the burden of public spotlight. What a deal!
Fame also destroys privacy. I myself would certainly hate being imprisoned in my house for fear that if I walked outside too many people would recognize me as a celebrity. Bloggers mostly don’t show their faces, just their ideas. How ideal!
In sum, for the 2,000,000 times one of you has clicked onto one of my articles to read it, maybe to add a comment, and maybe even to click Like, I applaud and thank you all.
May we enjoy many more gratifying times reading and writing together in the future!
Denver clinical psychologist and marriage therapist Susan Heitler, PhD is author of the books for building relationships success called Power of Two and the interactive online program that teaches these skills, PowerOfTwoMarriage.com.