My Own Best Critic and My Own Worst Friend

Shayne Seymour
Jan 8, 2018 · 7 min read

I’ve been beating myself up over not posting on Medium enough. You might say that I’ve been highly critical of myself. Good job, Shayne! Thanks, Shayne! It seems like I should be posting more on Medium. All my friends are doing it. At least the cool ones are. And I really love Medium. I love the site and the phone app. I super love them.

Great image by Raiko987 on

I’ve got limited time, though. Just for my own blog, Independently Happy, I must:

  • Get inspiration
  • Research topics
  • Research keywords
  • Espouse wisdom and drop knowledge
  • Edit and format
  • Create images
  • Configure SEO
  • Share for all the world to enjoy and grow happier, wiser, healthier and more productive.

Inspiration is the toughest. I believe it was Thomas Hiddleston who said:

Inspiration is 43% perspiration and 67% genius!

Maybe it was Hugh Jackman. Maybe I made it up.

In addition to those blogging duties I have a wife, kids, parents, a puppy, a house and a day job. I don’t have much extra time to write unique content for Medium.

Why Not Make Medium A Priority?

Like Michael Hyatt (really) said, a blogger should own and control their own home base. It shouldn’t be another site, platform or medium over which we have little control, even the medium called Medium.

What if Medium decided to close its doors? Or charge for content? As much as I love and value it, I have no control over Medium or any other medium. I only own and control my blog.


And what if my hosting company does a DevOops? A hosting company I won’t name (because I’m not an affiliate even though they obviously offer a fantastically generous affiliate program) last year did a DevOops. Many customers’ sites were down for several hours.

Because of those what-ifs, it’s all about the email list. Everything is about getting readers to my site so they can experience the wisdom and entertainment and grow in ways they never imagined. And boost my Google rankings. And to allow people the pleasure of joining my email list. I should charge for it, but I don’t.

It’s So Easy, Though

Medium even makes it easy by offering us its fancy and convenient import tool. It even adds the code to let search crawlers know where the original content is. So my site still gets the Google cred for the post I import.

If you really want Medium fame, though, you need to write for publications, and I just don’t feel warm and fuzzy about importing previously published content for publications.

Yes, I have done it. It was more fuzzy and less warm. (Seriously, Grammarly? You want “fuzzier” instead of “more fuzzy?”)

Nobody knew. I could just keep it between my best critic, my worst friend and me. My biggest blogging lessons come from Deadpool. Deadpool is my Blogtronus. That’s Blog + Patronus. I have a page on my site where I keep track of all the words I make up. I cleverly named it My Words.

I’d love to explain what Deadpool taught me about blogging. It would be the right thing to do, but I’m going to sell that guest post to the highest bidder.

That’s why I’ve decided to be my own best critic.

I have to write unique content for Medium publications to get the most Medium exposure and thus, the most traffic to my blog. So…

I’m My Own Best Critic!

And my own worst friend, but that part was more for the captivating title than anything I wanted to write about. At least not for now.

Except for this.

A few weeks ago, my friend Frank (Yes, THIS Frank*!) asked this question on bookface:

I loved the question. Partly because I was able to come up with a few funny replies, but mostly because I realized that I recently found out that very thing one day when looking in the mirror!

There I was, staring into the grill of my own worst enemy: me.

Cool image by suju at

I didn’t tell Frank about that conversation. I’m not telling anyone about it. People might think I’m weird. I don’t even want me to know about it. I purged it from my memory, never to be pondered again! But, like Aimee Mann said:

“You’ve got to be smart if you’re fooling yourself.”

I was shocked to find out that I was my worst enemy. And my best friend. And maybe fooling myself.

The Best Thing is Sometimes the Most Ridiculous Thing

That’s when I decided to blog about my blog.

Please distinguish blogging about my blog from blogging about blogging. There’s no money in blogging about blogging. I do occasionally mention blogging on my blog, but I assure you that this will not be a blog about my blog about blogging or about blogging about blogging on my blog.

In fact, this isn’t a blog at all. This is an article. It’s a Medium Article. I’m going to critique my own blog. Unless I forget.

This seemed like an awesome idea when I thought of it a few minutes ago. So awesome in fact, that I took a break from my keyword research to write this article with the hopes of having it published on Publishous. I begged Nicole* (the Publishous Founder) to have no hesitation rejecting me, that I feel more comfortable submitted articles to Publishous if I know she’ll reject the bad ones.

Read This Part First

So if you’re not reading this, it’s because Nicole rejected this article. If you’re not reading this, please know that I feel really comfortable submitting articles to Publishous now.

If you’re not reading this, that means this article is bad. And I still have another couple hundred words to go! If you’re not reading this, I’m really not sure why I’m even writing this part to you.

If you are reading this, you’re probably thinking about how ridiculous it is that I’d write all those little notes to people who aren’t reading this. How are they going to see the notes if they’re not reading this? It’s going to be up to you to tell them.

If you’re not reading this, read this next part, because I’m getting…

Back to Blogging About My Blog

I’m going to tell you, and thus me, what is good and bad about my blog. I’m going to be brutally honest. I don’t even care if I hurt my feelings. I can take it. I’ll probably be a little more candid than a true friend should be, but will employ enough candor to avoid being a bad friend.

This way, I can

  • blog about my blog
  • blog about what I’m blogging about
  • point readers to my site

If you read the “Read This Part First” first, this is the time to read the beginning.

I’m Not Even Going to Charge For It

This is the free stuff that you love, that encourages you to visit my site for more free stuff you love that encourages you to sign up for my email list with more free stuff that you love that warms you up for the stuff that will most definitely be slightly less than free.


Slightly more than free.

Perhaps I’ve said too much! I almost veered off into blogging about blogging.

Whew. We narrowly avoided that one!

Also, note that I’m not blogging about me. Although me is a fascinating topic, I will almost always never write about me in the first person on Medium. Almost. Always. (I think that paragraph broke Grammarly.)

Please Feel Free to Steal This Idea From Me!

(The Idea, not the post.)

It’s yours to use for yourself. You don’t even have to pay for it, but I’ll be glad to tell you where to send the checks if you insist.

I encourage you to freely and liberally write articles about my blog. In fact, I insist! Just remember that the job of Shayne’s Best Critic is already taken by me.

Who is your best critic?

What is your Blogtronus?

Say it with me: Expecto Blogtronum!

*Willie Nelson told me I should stop name-dropping.


Discover tomorrow’s bestsellers today.

Shayne Seymour

Written by

Happiness is my superpower. Travel, Gratitude and Mindfulness are my Infinity Stones. Humor is my Patronus.


Discover tomorrow’s bestsellers today.

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