Do you ever have a post that writes itself?

Something that is on your heart.

Something that you know that you know that you know.

Without a doubt.

With absolute certainty.

But you don’t really know how to say it.

You try to write it down.  You try over and over and over again to write the post, but the words won’t come.

And then one day it simply writes itself.



My post wrote itself when I was watching the Kentucky Derby.

The Run for the Roses.

Featuring twenty incredible three-year-old thoroughbreds…..born and bred to be champions.

Lined up at the starting gate….waiting for the race of a lifetime.

With their noses to the wind and hooves pawing impatiently at the ground.

And then they were off and running and running and running.  And it struck me as they rounded each corner straining and striving valiantly toward the finish line…..that there were twenty individual champions on that horse track that day.

Each with blinders on.

Each focused on the prize ahead.

At that moment….on that dirt track with thousands of spectators focused intently on those three-year-old champions… was became apparent that each horse was ….

….running his own race.




And right there….on my oatmeal couches in my Captain Crunch living room.  A light bulb went off and the post I was trying to write became instantaneously and overwhelmingly crystal clear.


Simply put….as bloggers….we are all running our own race.

Our very own “Run For the Roses.”


Some run for the glory.

Some run for the pure joy of running.

Some run because they don’t want to be left at the starting gate.

And some are running simply because they want their voice to be heard.


And sometimes in the rush of excitement and the thrill of our feet pounding on the track.  We take off our blinders and look around at the other racers.

And we see a horse that appears to be so much faster.

Or better.

Or stronger.

Or prettier than we ever think we could ever hope to be.


And it causes us to stumble.

Or falter.

Or let self-doubt creep in.

And we try to run someone else’s race and we forget why we even started running in the first place.

We compare ourselves and we feel less.  Or smaller.  Or inconsequential.



Don’t let comparison steal your joy.

You are the only you in all of blog land.

You are unique.

And wonderful.

And special and incredible.

And you have something to shout to the world.


Let your voice be heard.

So put  your blinders on with your nose pointed to the finish line.

Let the wind rush past and the dust fly and remember your own reason for running.

Let your voice be heard loud and clear as you round every corner of that simple dirt track.


And run your race of a lifetime.


PS  If you got an error message when you tried to load the blog….know that I adore you….and your incredible patience.   They tell me that it is fixed and hopefully all error messages are off running their own race in a land far far away.

PPS  For more information on the medal display project.  Click here.

PPPS  Edited to add:  As so many of you have pointed out….it’s really a journey….not a race.  You are absolutely positively correct.  I kind of got caught up in the whole Kentucky Derby analogy 🙂

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  1. Image for

    Oooh! I'm the first to comment! Do I get one of the ribbons? ;-) This is such a wonderful post, so beautifully written, by a lovely and talented blogger! We all benefit from your introspection, and your ability to articulate it so beautifully, because I am very sure that this has happened to each of us in our lives. Even if we are not talking blogging! You are so right on here! AMAZING post! Probably my favorite one EVER!! xo-Lisa

  2. Image for Shannon Fox Shannon Fox

    I took my blinders off. I just want to make friends with the other horses on the track, and stop for refreshments in the middle of the race. Pretty sure they don't give ribbons out for that, and I won't be winning any races? LOL But that's okay, because like you said. It's my race =)

  3. Image for Rita@thissortaoldlife Rita@thissortaoldlife

    Interesting metaphor, Kari. I appreciate the food for thought. I think I do better when I don't think of it as a race. Or a beauty contest. Or any kind of competition. Which is what I think you're getting at. A while ago, I was running hard, just like those horses with their blinders on. I found that I've had to change my pace so I won't pass out on the track. I'm not pounding down it like I was. It's a marathon for me now, not a sprint. And it feels much better to lope along, enjoying the scenery, stopping occasionally to walk and rest.

  4. Image for Jessica @ Mom 4 Real Jessica @ Mom 4 Real

    I just love you to pieces! I started out like worried that I wasn't good enough, and the minute I let it all go and threw caution to the wind, I loved it again. I'm with I enjoy doing what I do, sharing it, and making new friends. My favorite part of blogging has become talking and helping out newer bloggers...I get to be a teacher again! It's funny how things happen when you take the pressure off of yourself and just do what you love... Jessica

  5. Image for Kim Kim

    Karianne, what a super post!! Yes, we have to remember to just be ourselves and that we will click with some people and won't with others.

  6. Image for Susan Susan

    Love this post! I am working really hard to just be me. No comparisons. No beating myself up. No quitting because I think I'm not good enough at this. Thanks for the encouragement. P.S. I love the way you have displayed the 4-h ribbons. My wheels are spinning.....I'm sure I have a bunch of those stashed away somewhere that were my husbands and mine and our kids. Inspiring!

  7. Image for debbiedoos debbiedoos

    Girl, this is what I was trying to say the other day! So true, and so well spoken. Run your own race, even if you never win, you enjoyed the fun and the encouragement along the way!~ Great post girlie! Have a wonderful weekend.

  8. Image for amy amy

    What an incredibly beautiful and well written post. The description you provided changed my perspective completely. You are SO right. Great insight.

  9. Image for Whitney @ Drab to Fab Design Whitney @ Drab to Fab Design

    I really really really really love this! It's so easy to get caught up in thinking and wishing our little bloggy can be as good as someone else's, and that's so far from what I want my blog to be about. It's about expressing yourself, no one else! You wrote this beautifully!

  10. Image for Shelia Shelia

    This is a great post and a gentle reminder that we should blog for ourselves. When I first started blogging, I felt I needed to post every day and I did for a while and then realized I was doing this for myself and getting to know others. I guess I did start out on a race but now it's a journey! Your display looks great too. Be a sweetie and thanks for popping in to see me. Shelia ;)

  11. Image for Karah @ thespacebetweenblog Karah @ thespacebetweenblog

    This is so great Kari! And I didn't get an email notification about it...just an fyi. So glad you posted it on facebook. I am having so much fun watching you run for the roses...and running - however awkwardly and not necessarily in a straight line - beside you my friend. :)

    1. Image for Anne Anne

      Darling Karah, you are never awkward!!! You are exceptionally brilliant in your own right and you shine like the sun on those beaches you keep showing. xox just keep the iguanas out of it! lol shudder...

  12. Image for Yvonne @ StoneGable Yvonne @ StoneGable

    Kari, Well said, dear one! We all need to be reminded at times to "be true to our blog". I love that there are so many horses of a different color i the blogging race!!!! And we are all at our best when we run together enjoying eachother's company! Wonderful post!

  13. Image for Heidi @ Decor & More Heidi @ Decor & More

    I feel like you wrote this for me, KariAnne ~ I've had so many days of discouragement and doubt these past few months, watching traffic wane, and trying to keep my content real and fresh in the midst of real life. I often feel like I'm in over my head these days; I'm not completely sure it's because I've taken my blinders off (though I know I do an awful lot of peeking!); I'm afraid I might be my own worst enemy with expectations that are out of line with what's achievable. Time for some reflection and re-evaluating on what I'm doing here in the blogosphere and why I'm doing it, I think. Thanks for the food for thought, friend! Hope you have a glorious weekend. xo Heidi

  14. Image for everton terrace everton terrace

    Bravo! I have a friend with a fairly popular blog. She wants me to get out to more blogs so I can drum up more traffic, and get Twitter and accept advertising requests - ugh, not for me. I try to explain why I don't, but she doesn't get it. I love that she does it and she is out there leading the race but it's more pressure than I want at this empty nest time in my life. I love that you point out that we all do it for different reasons and in different ways and they are all valuable - I'm sending her this post :) I'm glad you watched the Derby.

  15. Image for shirley@housepitalitydesigns shirley@housepitalitydesigns won the Triple Crown on this one....In life, there is always going to be the prettier horse, the smarter horse, the more popular horse, the horse that got lucky to be in the right place and the right you pretty much said, just put your blinders on and enjoy the race....or maybe take them off for a while and enjoy the beauty that surrounds you... in front of you...the beauty of smiles, and sticky fingers, and smelly socks... You are the best....and I thought that was you in the Derby , as I told my hubby that there is a horse with red lipstick on!!!

  16. Image for Anne Anne

    A perfect analogy perfectly articulated! I was just reading away, minding my own business and thinking blinders are stupid (yes I was!!) and then I reached your conclusion and had a lightbulb moment. You are so right, race or journey it doesn't matter, the important thing is to remember that none of us are in competition with anyone else. We are raised that way and encouraged in it by our teachers and coaches, but it is the wrong way to think (I believe). When a person is perfectly happy with herself, she excels without needing anyone else to recognize it. The funny part is that when any of us excel, everyone else notices. So strive to be happy without comparing yourself to anyone else and you will excel. Logic was my forte in college... lol! You are a rockstar my friend! xox

  17. Image for Linda Adams Linda Adams

    Hello Karianne, Great post! I'm too tired most days to try to keep up with you all and I haven't been able to run for quite awhile. lol However, I do enjoy taking this journey through blogland. Now, I'm wondering about you watching the derby...did you watch on the TV or in person? Either way did you wear your red lipstick and a beautiful hat? Hope you have a super weekend! If you have time, please stop by to visit I'm celebrating and having a give away. Joyous Wishes, Linda

  18. Image for BB BB

    Such an uplifting and thought provoking post! Getting caught up reading your blog this morning. Love all the decor you showed in previous posts. You inspire me so much! Thanks!

  19. Image for stacey stacey

    Oh Miss KariAnne, my how you've hit the nail on the head!! I get so discouraged sometimes, I guess my race is more like a marathon but i hate to give up!

  20. Image for missy missy

    What an inspiring post..sentiments so true..words well spoken..Yes, there is only one me..Lucky world!! Makes me think of all those running in the Preakness today!!

  21. Image for CAS CAS

    Extremely well said, Karianne! When I finally realized that, blogging became so much for fun. I still have to remind myself (and often), but in doing so, it remains fun! CAS

  22. Image for Michele Michele

    I completely positively understand what you are saying here. And completely agree. Re-read th is post of mine, it was MY newbie version (tea related) trying to say the exact same thing. Honestly, you captured it perfectly where I was going with this. I would honoured if you read it - or re-read it knowing how much I love your post today. Here it is, sorry I can't do link on comments, you would have to just cut and paste in your browser. Thanks so much. <my sentiments too

  23. Image for Michelle Michelle

    Thank you for writing such encouraging words! :) When I began writing my blog the first time I felt pressure to keep up with everyone, to build followers, to compete. It was discouraging. I'm just not very competitive with my blogging...I want to enjoy it...I want to be friends with other bloggers, not compete for some unknown prize. So when I started writing again, I write what I enjoy...I don't really worry about the rest. I am enjoying the journey...I'm with Shannon Fox in the comment above...I want to "take off the blinders and make friends with the other horses on the track." Well written post KariAnne! :)

  24. Image for Ann Ann

    Oh KariAnne...I have struggled with this since my very first post. I agree with whoever said that it's really a marathon. I have found I need to pace myself. The sprints just exhaust me. I cope much better if I'm slow and steady. Unfortunately slow and steady leads to low rankings and fewer comments. I think many have forgotten about me. The ones who count, the real bloggy friends who care, are still there and that's the most important thing. We all need validation. We all need someone, once in a while, to tell us we are doing a good job. As long as we are there for each other, blogland will survive. Thank you for this post. Very well said.

  25. Image for Keeping it Cozy Keeping it Cozy

    Karianne, what a lovely post and such a good reminder. I wanted to start a blog for several years but was a little intimidated... then I read a book called Blogging for Bliss and I realized why I wanted to start one and I did... because it would be something I would enjoy, a reminder of all the things I have to be thankful for, because I always find so much inspiration from other blogs... I hope those are always a few of the reasons I have a blog. Thanks for sharing!

  26. Image for Deborah Deborah

    I'm one of your newer followers, and just wanted to say how much I enjoyed this post! Not only is it insightful, but it was the perfect timing for me today! Thanks!

  27. Image for Barbara F Barbara F

    Beautifully written KariAnne. It was a pleasure to read, and I'm not even a blogger! I love your way of looking at the world and inspiring others. Barbara

  28. Image for Jessica @ Stay at Home-ista Jessica @ Stay at Home-ista

    Karianne- you know you speak to all our blogger hearts since you are so clearly speaking form your heart. Thank you fo the reminder, my race is half Shannon's (friend and drinking!) and half a way to preserve memories of my life. All the efforts that go into being a stay at home mommy to those tiny ones who rarely say thank you, who constantly need things, and who grow up so fast (it's my son's 3rd birthday today, ack!). Thank you a million times over for just being you and for sharing that with all of us. Jessica

  29. Image for Misti @ Living on Cypress Hill Misti @ Living on Cypress Hill

    Great post! I don't post near as often as many other bloggers and I don't have any special "days" or anything of that sort. But you know what I do have? I have a blog that I'm very happy with, and I'm doing at my own pace, on my own time, and I'm not letting the fact that I don't have anything "special" or a certain number of posts every week, get me down. And I will add that sometimes I like commas. :)

  30. Image for Katherine Katherine

    Absolutely loved this - great post! I blog for the love of it and a chance to air my voice. Sometimes surrounded by 3 boys I need to talk with other girls!

  31. Image for Tammy Tammy

    Great's easy to try to be like someone else - more difficult to follow your own path sometimes. Love the way you write and your analogies!

  32. Image for Kelly Kelly

    This is definitely food for thought. However, I think this holds true in every thing that we share with other people, not just blogging. Mothers compare themselves to other mothers. Employees compare themselves to other employees. Etc, etc, etc. As I've gotten older, I don't hold as much regard to being better than someone else as I once would've strived for. I don't hold as much regard to "keeping up with the Jones" or trying to make someone like me either. I am more secure with myself and much more guarded about making my worth validated by other people. Can you tell I'm very analytical too? Underneath all of us, is the same person, wanting the same things out of life. We should just all live our own lives and realize that God has a plan for each of us and no two people will follow the exact same plan. So, it's pointless to compare ourselves really! Ok.........I'm getting off my soap box now. Your post was very thought provoking!

  33. Image for Karen Karen

    Oh my Karianne! What a beautiful, inspired post this is. I think I have to print off your words and put it above my computer as a reminder when I do have a down day. I love the way you phrased all of it! What fantastic imagery. Just beautiful. Thanks for sharing. -K

  34. Image for Gwen Gwen

    But the race has been set before us. I took my blinders off for a moment today. And I felt small and insignificant. And I felt silly. And then I read this post. And I'm reaching upward to find my prize...and I'm tuning out that voice that says I'm not enough... I don't have what it takes... I need something more to be what it is that I want. So, my friend, I plan to RUN this RACE for all it's worth.. and when the race is done, I hope to see that the journey has been completed in record time with grace and brilliance and ever more joy.

  35. Image for Mary Mary

    karianne. you know my heart today! this is WONDERFUL. i struggle with this so much{or i did} but i am trying very hard, every day, to put my blinders on and do what God wants me to do, and blog for His glory alone. thanks girl. you are indeed a treasure! xoxo

  36. Image for Lorraine Lorraine

    Thanks Karianne for saying this OUT LOUD.....I have made some wonderful friends and supporters through blogging even though I'm small compared to most. My word for the year was 'confidence' and I have tried to never look at the amount of comments, the amount of followers, the lack of sponsors, etc as the year has unfolded. And I find that I enjoy blogging so much and am still doing it for the same reasons I meet other people, to learn new projects, to show some projects I do and share my own life, beliefs, dreams and thoughts.....even if they just float around in cyberspace. It is a personal, creative outlet for me and just writing and making stuff gives me joy. I am happy for those who have soared into public prominence but just as happy when I chat with my bloggy friends. It's a wonderful thing to experience how small the world actually is when there are other like-minded people out there. You are an inspiration and this post was truly inspired by Him!! Blessings, Lorraine

  37. Image for Stephanie Stephanie

    Karianne, very seldom do I read a post as thoroughly as I read this one. Let me tell you, it gave me shivers, I mean the good kind. Honey, you are so on-point! Love it. 'Nuff said. BTW, I'm having a giveaway right now on my blog & I'd love for you to stop by and enter. My annual WEDDING BLOG PARTY is coming soon, too (June 8th) and I'd so love it if you could join us! Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend! Big TX Hugs, Stephanie

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