My alarm rings and I wake up to rays of sunlight beaming through the gap between my curtains. I realise that it's Saturday - blog day! For the last eight months, I have been writing a blog on current affairs, one post a week. Just a week ago, I wrote my 31st article. After crossing this massive milestone, I realised just how much my blog had helped me to express my views and thoughts. Blogging has helped me so much over lockdown, from developing my writing skills to supporting my mental health.

So how has blogging helped me develop my writing skills? Every week since April 10th, I have posted one article. These articles had varying topics, ranging from coronavirus and the current worldwide pandemic to the US election. This constant practise allowed me to improve upon my skills as an engaging writer, trying to pull in more and more viewers week to week. They say that practice makes perfect and having a scheduled time for my blog meant that I could do just that: I had a set-out time in which I could work on my skills, precisely as I would with a sport like football or cricket.

More than that, though, my blog has been able to help me with my mental health. Blogging has meant that I can express any thoughts or worries that I have, instead of bottling them all up. It has helped me to figure out my thoughts, to write them out in a structured way and in a way that can help others who have the same query too.

That leads me to my next point - blogging can help others too! Whether your blog is about current affairs, cooking, or fashion, the information you put out due to your passion can be helpful to other people, and give them a way to read more about something that they might also find interesting. In my case, my blog is a current affairs blog - I try to clarify some of the things that have happened that week. I do this by doing lots of research and cross-referencing between different sources for the information relevant to my article - I try to ensure that the material comes from a trustworthy source before using it.

Many people began blogging over lockdown, as did I. The reason I have persevered to get an article out every single week is that I have enjoyed the process of writing articles. From researching to editing, every stage has helped me strengthen my skills as a journalist and writer. So, if you are planning on starting a blog, my advice would be to find something you are passionate about, something that you are sure you will continue loving and enjoying for a long time. In my case, the most prevalent thing at the time of starting my blog was coronavirus - I also find biology and the sciences very interesting - and so my blog naturally came to be a current affairs blog.

Overall, blogging is something that lots of people try out at some point. You have a lot of freedom with it: what kind of blog will it be, how often will you post, etc. I would recommend it to everyone and anyone, if not as a way to improve your skills, then as a way to pass the time and do more research about something you enjoy.

If you have any spare time, please check out my blog - as I have mentioned before, I post every week on different topics, so please have a look: you might find it interesting.

www.avaddiraju.wixsite.com/confessions