Restorative Justice blog advice, 6 tips for the practitioner or advocate.

I have been blogging for just over 2 years.  I started in September of 2008.  Right now the blog views are just over 81,000.  One of my blog role models, Penelope Trunk, has 60,000 subscribers to her blog (I have a handful, maybe two).   I also author two other blogs, and guest post whenever I can.

However, this project to be the first and most frequent Restorative Justice blogger, is working out really well.  My goal is to help others, and celebrate the rewards of being a blogger.  The post today offers some thoughts and advice on for those new to blogging.

1) write in your voice.  Try to write like you are telling someone the story.  I am often rehearsing what I am writing in my head, as if it is being said outloud.  The point of blogging is that relationship and using your own tone, builds that.  People what to relate to who you are.

2.)expand yourself.  Reach when you post, share your perspective, in a non-judgemental way.  Claim it as your opinion or experience.  I’ve posted things and had “bloggers remorse”.  Yet that nervousness has helped me understand my own boundaries and how I want my voice to be heard.

3.) have thick skin and an open mind.  Be ready for any type of feedback.  I shared a comment once and asked for some mentoring around it.  It was acknowledged as a “slap on the face”, yet I was complimented for reaping the learning from it.  It taught me if I could do that in a computer world, maybe I could work on it in real life.  I needed both thick skin and the open-ness to see and feel the lesson.  The same neutrality that helps Restorative Justice practitioners, helps when you blog.  Be aware of your bias, personal beliefs and perspectives.  Deliver your expressions openly, with that most important Restorative Justice value: respect.

4.)set your style.  Decide up front, what type of posts you want to be doing 500 words, 140 words.  Think about how much time you want people to spend on your blog.  Take time to set up the blog, pick out the widgets, backdrop, font with your style in mind.  You will be glad you have some parameters and goals.  Remember your theme or intention for blogging and relate your posts to that.  For Restorative Justice practitioners and advocates, you need to learn to tell the story without violating confidentiality and upholding the mission and vision of Restorative Justice.

5.)use your draft folder.  Ever get mad, send the email or letter before you should have?  Blogging for me is an emotional expression, when I feel passionate about something I can have a tendency to process that in my blog.  It has worked for me, in that I get positive feedback about some of the more personal posts.  I have also learned to put things in my draft folder, for later review.  Some posts never get published, yet I leave them as a reminder of what I was experiencing at a certain point in time.

6.)Relationship.  Restorative Justice is all about our relationships.  Think about the relationship to your blog, blog readers and self as a blogger.  This perspective will help you in your writing and development.  I think my skills at expressing myself have improved, as I wrote out my ideas and stories.  Be aware you are growing and developing relationships at every step of the way.  I have connected with many wonderful people as a result of this blog.

Good luck to you in blogging and restorative justice!