Saturday, February 23, 2013

The Future of "Reactive Champion"

As you know, a few months ago I decided that I needed to take a break. I did this for a number of reasons. Part of it was because I was in the middle of a divorce, which was emotionally taxing. Part of it was because I was working on a side project (still am, actually). But mostly, it was because blogging just wasn't fun anymore. In fact, I found it downright stressful. I was blogging on a regular schedule, delivering (or trying to, anyway) high-quality content, and spending large amounts of time doing so. I was beginning to resent it.

I'm glad I took a break. It gave me the time I needed to rest, heal, and reflect on my goals. The truth is, I'm in a very different place than when I first started this blog, relationship changes aside. I was working in a very boring job with very little to do other than write. I had a highly anxious, stressed, and reactive dog. I was very invested in dog sports. And, I'll admit, I felt just a bit insecure, and tried to get some of those needs met through this blog.

Things have changed so much since then. I'm in a much better place in so many respects: vocationally, emotionally, physically. Maisy is, too. In fact, Maisy is doing so awesome that the name of this blog is a downright lie now.

All of this means that the nature of this blog must change.

Unrelated picture is unrelated. Courtesy of Sara Reusche.
First, I'm keeping the name, and the focus on reactive dogs. I teach reactive dog classes and I do private behavior consults for Paws Abilities Dog Training, so this only makes sense. I will continue to write educational posts, reflections on training and relationships with our dogs, and seminar reports. However, I'm also going to share more Maisy stories, even if they don't underscore any particular point. I love my dog like crazy, and I want to share that with the world. I may or may not share more about my personal life... we'll see.

Second, I'm dropping the schedule. I will now post when I want instead of on set days. I'm told this is terrible for increasing page views and all that, but frankly, I figure that if readers have hung in there with me throughout my break, they'll probably be okay with this decision. I'll have some fairly regular posts at first. I need to get you all caught up on Maisy's life over the past couple months, have a few things that never got posted, and have some new insights and ideas I want to share with you. I hope to finish my Shedd Animal Training Seminar series, too, but it may take awhile.

Finally, I'm going to spend less time making sure the blog is “perfect.” No more endless editing and polishing before the post goes up. No more worries about how the type is justified, or the placement of pictures. Or heck, even how well the pictures relate to the post. Sometimes I just have a cute picture. Less perfection also means there will likely be more humor and even an occasional swear word. I'm sorry if this offends you (truly!), but I want my writing to be more authentic!

Okay, that's it! I'm excited to be back, and relieved to have found ways to reduce the self-imposed pressure of blogging. Let's see where this wild ride called life takes us!

14 comments:

Ninso said...

Glad you're back, whatever format that might take!

Anonymous said...

I'll take any Maisy I can get!

Nicky

WonderPupsMom said...

Welcome back to the blogosphere! Change is, for the most part, good. just ask maisey!

Jen said...

I'm looking forward to hearing more about Maisy!

I think it's important to blog how you want to, and on topics that you love. I was so happy to see your post this morning, and will certainly stick with you even if you aren't MWF or what have you!

Martina Schoppe said...

Good to have you back :)

Vanessa said...

Welcome back! I can't wait to read more of your experiences.

Louise Kerr said...

Crystal never apologize for what you do. I love your blog and particularly like the reports on conferences as I can not attend them living in Australia. Sorry to hear about your divorce. You are a very good writer and a few typos are not an issue.
Regards Louise Kerr
Elite Pet Care & Education - Australia

Tegan said...

I'm glad you're back, in any shape or form I can get you!

Joanna said...

Oh goodness, there's really no need to stress over making a blog "perfect"! :) Glad to see you back.

Laura, Lance, and Vito said...

Self-imposed pressure is right! Glad to see Maisy's face again :)

sjsturgis said...

Good for you. Your journey with Maisie continues, but all the earlier steps are still on your blog for dog people to discover. P.S. My reactive malamute, Travvy, is now ARCHX, RL3, and P-CRO-IV. Not bad for a team that almost flunked out of their first Rally class. ;-)

Alexis said...

Welcome back! I just like hearing about how you have fun with Maisy dog, whether that's sports, walks, or just being able to chill on the sofa! When you do get a chance to write a couple sentences about a seminar or book, that's wonderful, but you don't have to take the time to do a whole post. Also, random pictures of Maisy are the best!

Katie, Maizey, Magnus and Calvin said...

Yay!! Welcome back! I so relate to this post, as I have to many, many of your posts. I'll be happy to hear from you whatever it may be you share or not! As for unrelated pictures, alas, that is really all my blog is anymore! LOL Oh well, it's just for me anyways. Welcome back!

Kerry M. said...

Glad to see you're back. I've gone through a bit of a blog purge over the last couple of months, but kept yours hanging around. Glad I did so.