I took a little break from the blog last week, partly just to refresh and recharge, but also because life got insanely busy and I really just didn’t have the time to post. As I touched on in my last post, I’ve been feeling so very meh about life as of late – but I’m focusing on a new business venture, trying to maximise the quality of this blog for you guys, and working to get back to a point where I feel determined and satisfied rather than down in the dumps and looking for a way to put the pause button on life. Anyways, as I currently muster over the right way to structure a post all about the ‘darker’ superficial, I-need-validation side of blogging, I thought I would keep things light-hearted and instead talk about the best aspects of being a blogger…
Having to freedom to speak your mind and share your thoughts
I’m a writer at heart. The first time I picked up a pen and wrote a story I was barely five years old, then throughout my younger years I would keep diary after diary, all of them always used as an outlet to express how I felt. For me, writing is therapeutic. If something comes to mind (e.g. I have a random idea to document the best sides to being a blogger), it honestly feels so refreshing to just write everything down. This can also apply when I’m talking about more dramatic points to my life – I’ve spoken about the hardships of secondary school, I’ve spoken about losing a close friend of mind and I’ve even shared stories about growing up forever being the single one on Valentine’s Day. I share my life and I share my experiences not only as an outlet but also as something for other girls and women to read, feel like they can relate to, and feel like they can learn from. Of course given that I do this I also have to be very mindful about who reads my blog; I am aware that people who genuinely know me on a day-to-day basis do click onto my blog from time to time so although I don’t filter myself too much in terms of what I share, I will always try and keep it was vague as possible for those that do know me in real life.
Getting the opportunity to work with brands
I honestly started blogging just because I wanted to share what makeup I was buying and how it was suiting me. I did have some awareness at the time that people could get brand opportunities through blogging, but I didn’t know how it was worked and I wasn’t too bothered either. So when I got my first e-mail from a PR company telling me they would pay me X amount to do Y, or when I was contacted by a company that wanted to send me something for free for the first time, I was absolutely flabbergasted. I honestly believe as bloggers we need to always remember to step back and count our blessings at times and not feel too entitled. It is definitely not a very average thing to be sent free items or paid for putting up a photo on Instagram, it is truly a blessing and I do feel very lucky to be in the position where I can have the exposure to such amazing brands, even if I often feel unsatisfied with my blog. But, with the opportunity comes responsibility, and that is the responsibility to be honest. You’ve got to do right by your readers and not use your position of a blogger to exploit.
Having control over your own content and time
With most things in life; you really lack a lot of control. Throughout school we’re told what to do by teachers and lecturers, you interview for jobs and the outcome of that lies in the hands of someone that has known you for thirty minutes; then you go to work where, especially as a junior, your timetable is totally dictated by higher powers. I have lived, and am living, all of these things right now. What’s great about blogging – is that you do what you want. You want to be consistent? That’s up to you. You want to take a break? That’s down to you. Want to post about fashion/beauty/lifestyle? That’s your decision. You want to wake up and starting working at 11am? That’s up to you. Of course your choices dictate your success, but at the end of the day – it’s your choice. It’s literally the most freeing feeling ever to be in charge of your own sh*t. Of course, you’ll still have some deadlines to meet, and you can’t just pick and choose what opportunities you get, but how you choose to manage your brand and your content is ultimately in your own hands.
Doing something ‘different’
Throughout my life, I’ve always had to do something ‘out of the ordinary’. For example, when I was young I’d write stories, I got a bit older and started editing videos of all my family holidays, in the meantime I taught myself how to code HTML, and before you know it I was selling web-designs to multiple clients. On the side I was representing my school in athletics competitions and taking up music theatre classes. All the while I was studying multiple hours to land myself into a top institution. I remember once telling someone that I liked being ‘busy’, and they thought it was weird. Now I’m older and genuinely very busy, there’s nothing I appreciate more than a lie in and a day spent watching episodes of Power in bed, but I know there’s only so long I can go without doing very much, before I’m itching to start working on something again. I like to keep busy, I like to becreative, its just the way I’ve always been and this blog is a perfect outlet for that and a very convenient way for me to express myself.
Building your network
Of course, you can never miss out on the people you meet! I feel like I’m always coming across so many different types of people with regards to the very fundamentals about how they want to live their lives – the people I come across at work, the people I come across at school, the people I come across in blogging – they’re all so different, but it keeps things interesting. I’ve met so many ambitious and inspirational ladies since I’ve been in the blogging game and discover more everyday. The blogging community does have a lot of very catty moments, but at the crux, it was born out of a bunch of people who just want to share their lives and support each other.