When Things Aren’t Working: How to Problem Solve in Isolation

For the past few months I have been very conscious of a problem: the things I am working on aren’t growing. The blog has been static but stable at a particular level of views and interest for some time, my Patreon hasn’t grown a great deal, and my social media followers haven’t been increasing.

Something, somewhere, is obviously wrong.

But working out what has been incredibly stressful, because it’s not like I can just go to a colleague and say hey, what’s going on, what can we do? Except – well, I can do that. Not with a colleague, but with friends and family and, in this instance, my ever-suffering partner.

When I had reached the point where I was about ready to implode from the stress, he made me talk through what was going wrong. And you know what? I already knew what the problem was, I just couldn’t focus on it or accept that it was what I needed to do.

Because the thing is, neither the problem nor the solution is simple.

That’s what I was getting overwhelmed by. I would be thinking about how I needed more Patreon content and better blog content and to work out why people aren’t engaging with me on social media, why I’m not growing that way. These all seemed like such disparate things.

But that outside perspective was able to tie them together with a simple fact: “you’re not just one thing, you’re a content creator”. The irony being that this statement drew all of those things into one so that I could conceive of them as a problem, not twenty problems.

So here’s what we’re going to do about that.

I’m afraid of changing things too much because in many ways, what I’m doing right now is working. But I’m not just changing things, I’m hunting the core of what I want to be doing here. I want to make things. I want to share things so that others can enjoy them. That’s what matters to me.

And yes, there are a bunch of other things I’m going to change as well. About what social media I support, where I’m directing my professional improvement, how I distribute my time. But it’s all to support that core thing: I want to make you things, and I want you to get to see them, and I want that to be what people choose to support me for.

Which means things will be changing round here, for the better.

Some of it won’t work. Some of it is an experiment that won’t solve the problem. But I’m confident that a lot of the changes that are coming will only serve to improve what I do here, and what you enjoy about being here. So thank you for continuing to stay with me on this journey, and for all your support thus far and in the future.

If you want to get updates on what’s going on, follow me on Twitter and Instagram for the most frequent and reliable news!