Blogging as Part of Identity Development/Exploration

When I started my blog, my goal was to share my professional thoughts. After two hundred blog posts and almost four years later since I posted my first post, my blog has become a part of my identity development and exploration. In part, it’s a documentation of my personal and professional growth, but it’s within the the process of reflections and thinking when I write my posts that gave me the opportunity to examine my value systems that drive not only my professional aspirations but leads me to question how and why I think the way I do. In sharing my thoughts through my blog, my posts have led to conversations and exchange of ideas beyond social media.

Most of my posts were written between 10 pm to 3 am in the morning, and it’s because those are the times when I can have the focus to be able to think deeply about my life and my career. I wish I can write whenever I want to, but the reality is that I can only write about topics that really interest me and when events or people get emotions out of me. I’ve come to admit long time ago, my blog posts are not always grammatically correct and I rarely go back and review/edit them. I’ve come to accept this may be bad practice as a writer, but I find there’s authenticity when I write raw words just coming out of my head and driven by emotions. There have been times when I’ve written posts as tears flowed because I was so emotionally invested in what I was writing about. I get emotional when I think about the sacrifices my parents made and how blessed I am because of them. I get angry when I think about those times when I felt treated lower than others for whatever reasons. I am happy when I write about students who remind me of why I am in student affairs.

As I look back at my posts, I realize they have also become documentations and reflections of my past life. My family and I have come a long way since we immigrated from the Philippines in 1984. Through hard work and dedication, and mostly from my parent’s support, our family has done well. We have endured challenges that to this day still make me upset and have received blessings beyond my expectations.

My posts have also become a place for me to explore my future. In sharing my vision of student affairs like this post or this and this, I inevitably begin to think about the directions my wife and I would like to pursue. I begin to think about our hopes and aspirations and what it would take for us to get to where we want to go.

I’ve considered my blog as my place to express my thoughts without interruptions and where I’m free to think how I think. Some of my thoughts are stuck in draft mode and they may never be published as the tone and content of those posts may not be perceived as being appropriate, but I do look at them from time to time to remind myself of my thoughts and mindset when I wrote them. While I didn’t intend for my blog to be a reflection place and a documentation of my past and future lives, my blog has served a purpose greater than I had ever intended.


3 thoughts on “Blogging as Part of Identity Development/Exploration

  1. lmendersby

    I’m glad I’m not the only one, Joe. As an extrovert, I think aloud and have now found that I also ‘write aloud’ too. My blog is fantastic for reflection – I’m just as surprised as everyone else with what ends up on the page. I can start with the smallest (140 characters or less) inkling of an idea and it can grow into over 1000 words as I write out my thoughts. I also get a double dose of reflection in sharing my writings with colleagues and friends. So many people have read, commented, and shared what they find most meaningful in my writing, which creates more space for dialogue and deeper reflection, while also offering different and important perspectives I may never have considered. It’s scary to put myself out there and not always say “I think …” (I’m working on being better at owning what I believe while still leaving room to be wrong), but this identity laboratory is equal parts fascinating and terrifying – and I don’t think I’d want to be anywhere different. 🙂 Keep writing my friend – I love learning from you!

  2. liz.broughton

    Joe–Thanks for your authentic YOU. I enjoy reading your blog. You keep me informed about technology, student affairs and why we do what we do!!

  3. Pingback: Digital Lollipop Moments | Joe Sabado - Student Affairs & Technology LeadershipJoe Sabado - Student Affairs & Technology Leadership

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