Let’s try this again.

It’s been nearly two years since I’ve blogged consistently. There are quite a few reasons for that, but they basically boil down to these three things:

I started working a challenging full-time job. I’ve learned a ton and I’m proud of the work I do, but I’ve also been mentally and emotionally exhausted most days when I come home from work. Believe it or not, blogging takes time and energy. And I honestly haven’t had much of either.

• There are aspects of my current circumstances that I have a lot to say about, but don’t feel at liberty to share about in great detail. My approach to blogging has always been one of vulnerability, authenticity, and honesty, so not being able to freely write about what I want to write about made me more hesitant to write at all.

I’ve failed at building routines during this phase of my life. You need discipline to blog consistently, and that’s something I’ve really struggled with over the past two years.

As I typed out these issues, I’ve honestly started to reevaluate if it’s even worth it to try this again. It will certainly be difficult. But I do think it’s worth it. I’ve worked toward this. I’ve redesigned the look of my website. I’ve thought about the direction I want the blog to go. I’ve even got a few drafts stockpiled. I’ve been mentally preparing myself. Why? Because I need it. Here are four reasons why I’m taking another swing at this crazy thing:

1. I need to push past my obstacles. The writer’s block-inducing challenges above are things I will likely face in some form or another for the rest of my life. I want to redeem the time and energy I do have. I want to figure out how to be honest and vulnerable while using the right amount of discretion about what I share. I want to relearn the art of discipline. If I let these things stop me now, when am I ever going to learn how to overcome them?

2. I still call myself a writer. It’s been part of my identity since I was a little girl. And while I get to do some writing at my job, it’s not quite the same. Many other people on the creative team I work with use their unique skillsets outside of work. I haven’t been doing that. And it’s kind of been driving me crazy. I don’t want to feel like a hypocrite when I call myself a writer. I want to be writing.

3. I need a healthy outlet. Writing has always helped me express my feelings and work through my thoughts. I often feel like I’m missing something in how I process things these days. I have a lot of strong opinions, but they often come out in the form of emotionally-charged comments to the people around me. Writing gives me a way to share these opinions, but also think through them as I work to convey them to other people. Sometimes writing them out helps me take pride or emotion out of the equation, allows me to consider other perspectives, and occasionally even alters how I feel or think about the issue.

4. I want to use the skills and passions God has given me. Whether or not I actually have much talent for writing, I’ve sure invested a lot into it over the years. I’ve learned quite a bit and I know I have quite a bit left to learn. I love words. I love telling stories. And I love when I can use my words to help, encourage, teach, comfort, persuade, and lift up other people. I believe that God uses words in people’s lives in profound ways, so I want to be faithful to use them to share truth, spread hope, and seek life. Plus, I’ve got some cool things on the horizon—some crazy ideas, an incredible trip. I’m excited to see where this can go.

So here we are. I’ve written the post. I’m going to press “Publish.” I’m making the commitment. And I’m going to try my best to stick with it.

I will write regardless, but it would be great if ya’ll would read, comment, like, and share. Let’s talk about things that matter, things that are interesting, things that keep us up at night. Let me know if there’s something you’d like to see me write about, review, or respond to. Let this be a dialogue. I want to hear your voices, too.

Here goes nothing.