Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Why I have never been so glad that blogging isn’t my job



When I started this blog back in 2013, apart from being a completely different person, I had totally different aspirations for this blog. I hated my job, I have always loved writing, and yep – I’ll admit it – I wanted my blog to take off, and for it to become my full time career. It’s the Zoella effect, isn’t it? I wanted to be the Londoner, or Tanya Burr, or any one of those fabulous, glamorous girls with their endless lunch dates and holidays and designer handbags, flitting about in a world of sunshine and pug puppies and Diptyque candles. It looked so appealing and I one hundred percent bought into it and thought it was real, an idyllic life – a dream job. These girls, I thought, were so lucky – they were just paid to write about make up! Or a pair of jeans! Or avocado on toast! In their own home! They didn’t even have to get on the tube!  



So I set up my blog, and it grew to about 500 subscribers, where it’s remained relatively steady ever since. I could have a competition and try to grow it, go on a following spree and try to grow it- if you’re a blogger, you know the drill – but ultimately, the blogs that are going to be huge tend to get so quite quickly. I didn’t realise when I set my blog up quite how saturated the market was and how naïve I was in believing my little Blogger template would get me anywhere when a.) I am not a millionaire and b.) I am not a model, but I realised it quite quickly.




I didn’t stop blogging because I grew to love it. Most of my posts are lifestyle posts – a diary of my life, an extended scrapbook, a place to keep photos and silly little memories that it scares me I might otherwise forget. The last few years have been the biggest, the most stressful and yet the happiest of my life. If I could stop time and stay in them, I would. This blog is the closest I can get. I read it back and laugh and smile and occasionally cry. It makes me incredibly happy.



 Sometimes I still want to review make up, and I can. None of my friends are really ‘into’ make up the way I am, so if I’ve bought something new and I want to talk about it, I do so here. I can complain about restaurants I don’t like and celebrate ones I do. I can try and be funny or I can try and be thought provoking. I am not proving myself to anybody. I write whatever and whenever I like, although because I like writing, it is fairly regular. I don’t beat myself up if I buy make up and don’t take photographs of it before I use it. I am still going to get paid if I don’t put up a blogpost this week. 

And as for the community - well, I can enjoy the bits I like about it. I can join in Twitter chats. I love reading comments and replying to them and commenting on other people's blogs. When people tell me they like my blog it makes me so happy, when people follow me I find it really exciting. But I'm not in competition with anybody. I can follow whoever I want, popular or not. There's no ladder to climb here. I don't feel jealous anymore when people become famous seemingly overnight, because that is no longer what I'm aiming for.




Maybe because I have a new job now – one I like, in which I am valued and which I feel I can progress from – or maybe because so many bloggers have written expose pieces on the reality of blogging about how depressed and jaded they are, but the shine of being a fulltime blogger has worn off for me. I’m no longer sure I believe every review I read – I mean, wouldn’t you write a good review of a product if a brand promised you thousands of pounds for doing so? I would. I mean, not if it burnt my eyes off or anything – but saying an average mascara is a brilliant one? I’d probably convince myself it was brilliant, for that kind of money. And I certainly don’t believe that everybody’s lives are Pinterest-perfect. I don’t think everybody perfectly arranges their scatter cushions and lights their £40 candles every day. I just don’t. Or at least, I don’t believe that if I became a blogger, I’d start doing these things too.



Bloggers have started mentioning the hardships of their jobs – like, working at home. I’ve had a few days working from home recently and it made me realise how difficult it would be to do that full time – it’s incredibly difficult to motivate yourself to even bother getting dressed, let alone doing some productive work. I like buying new outfits for work, getting up in the morning and doing my make up, having a chat with the girl next to me about my new shoes, going out for lunch for somebody’s birthday, going to after work drinks paid for by the company. OK – I don’t like it on rainy Mondays when the tube is delayed and a man with BO puts his armpit in my face and my boss is mad at me for no reason. But that’s the price you pay for all those other things –for not spending your days alone with your laptop, which I personally think is harder than it sounds.

 
See? A photo of a baby elephant, just because I want to and I can!

I just want to say to anyone who is blogging for fun – just keep it up! Don’t get disheartened that you may never be signed by Gleam. Unlike all those girls fighting over YSL collections and free lunches, staring at Google statistics and wondering why they weren’t invited to the most recent Benefit event, you’re just writing what you like. You’re still going to get paid your salary and go out to events with work (even if they don’t involve free lipstick – I mean, a lipstick is like £7. Who cares?) and if you want, you can even spend £40 on a candle. Your life is everything it’s cracked up to be so you should write about it. I love blogging, and I am so, so glad I am not a professional blogger. Anybody with me?  
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7 comments

  1. Blogging full-time as a career did occur to me when I started blogging. I have never read or seen the other side of blogging as you mentioned. This is a whole new perspective for me but I'm glad to see that you took a decision that made you happy. Sending lots of love <3

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  2. As much as I love my work from home days and I love writing and I love my blog. I'm not sure being a professional blogger is for me. I've been to a couple of meet ups and press days and sometimes they're so cliquey. I'm just not pushy enough. I would still love to be my own boss though. xxx

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  3. Thanks for sharing this lovely post! I currently blog in my spare time because I love sharing my opinions and thoughts on things and meet some amazing women along the way..

    CANDICE | BEAUTY CANDY LOVES

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  4. haha! Such a great post! I'm with you on that girl! I didn't start blogging to gain a career to be honest just for fun and I aim to keep it that way. I love my life the way it is (minus the boss mad at you for no reason lol). x

    www.virgosandkisses.com

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  5. Really good post! xo

    www.libertylifeandselfhelp.com

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  6. I absolutely loved reading this post and found myself nodding along!
    Sophie
    x
    Story Of A Girl

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  7. Your outlook on blogging is the same as mine! I blog to document my life and although it's not something I do as often as I like, it's a hobby I enjoy. Good on you for making people realise it's not all about competition, stats and freebies.


    Danielle x

    www.essexandthecitydan.wordpress.com

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