I was recently thinking about social media and how much pressure it comes with (average Monday morning) – particularly for people that find themselves building a career from it. I see lots of people I admire question their ability and their creativity, and it’s really made me take a step back over the last couple of months and revaluate what I wanted out of my blog/online presence. For instance, when I started YouTube, I naively vowed to post at least one video a week. I didn’t realise how much work it would be, or how difficult it would be to capture a video that reflects who I am as a real person…
I dislike coming across as a presenter version of myself, but at the same time, there’s something incredibly scary about behaving in a completely unfiltered way. After all, there’s definitely a level of professionalism that I want to maintain as a blogger/writer – this is what I enjoy most, and will always be at the forefront of anything I do. I have come to the conclusion that a lot of creative people reach a point when they start worrying about the impact their content is having on other people, rather than remembering why they started in the first place. I guess this never happens more so than when it becomes your full time job – it occupies way more of head space because it’s no longer just considered a hobby or a ‘side hustle’.
Don’t get me wrong, I love receiving feedback, and it’s also really useful when people message me with ideas – but this shouldn’t be our sole navigation for creating new things…
It’s one of the questions I get asked the most over on Instagram too – how do you find the courage to hit publish each week without knowing how people will receive it? The answer is simply that I don’t. I never know whether people will be falling asleep into their cereal, or copy and pasting it to everyone they know – there’s no way of really knowing what people will connect with until afterwards. There’s numerous posts that I’ve shared that have received floods of positive comments – posts that I almost didn’t want to put out there because of how personal they were. I didn’t necessarily enjoy writing these posts, but I had a strong sense that they were important to share with others. They say knowledge is power (something that becomes increasingly questionable when you look at those in power these days), but talking about things openly is an amazing way to connect with like-minded people.
There’s also lots of posts that I’ve really had fun putting together that have received no attention at all – I guess the real hard part about any creative job is finding a balance between what your audience enjoys, and what you enjoy putting out into the universe as a creative being…
This is what I find really freeing about the Instagram algorithm – it’s something we all love to have a good moan about from time to time (anyone else feel a bit nauseous whenever they say algorithm out loud?. It almost makes me feel embarrassed of my millennial status). In a way, knowing that I don’t have any real power over the reach my post will get, kind of takes a lot of the daily pressure out of what I do. I’ve stopped worrying so much about what people might prefer to see, and have just started posting what makes me happy again. Whether that’s the odd picture of Sam and I, or a building that I found aesthetically pleasing – I never want my content to feel vacant. It’s kind of a given that outfit posts and selfies will always get the most likes, but sometimes I just get sick of going through tonnes of images of my own bloody face.
It’s a complete first world problem – it’s a part of the blogging industry that can feel a bit sickly, and that I often struggle to find meaning in. There’s definitely a level of narcism that’s associated with blogging – you’re essentially selling yourself, your thoughts, your lifestyle, and it’s very easy to get caught up in the pressures of what other people expect from you.
I guess that’s why you might have noticed that I rarely just talk about the outfit I’m wearing – there will always be something personal thrown in there. This is the the main way I try to add another layer to my content – it’s the type of content I personally enjoy to read, and it also makes me feel like I’m giving something back. I often feel guilty for having a platform, so if I can offer any words of wisdom along the way, it makes me feel like I’m doing an okay job. As far as I’m concerned, you guys can see the outfit I’m wearing, so you don’t always need to be told that it’s a great dress, or a great pair of jeans. Obviously, sometimes I’ll talk you through a piece in more detail – particularly if it’s a themed post, or a piece I featured was on the more expensive side. I’d never want you to go and purchase something that was falling apart after a few weeks…
I guess this is one of those posts where I’m just thinking out loud and trying to make some sense of those thoughts as I type – I think it’s just important that first and foremost, we all create content we are proud of. No matter what your job is, as a creative person there’s nothing worse than not finding joy and satisfaction in the things you create. Sometimes we have to tune out trends and stick with what our gut tells us – after all, being different should be celebrated…
Sometimes the worst thing we can do is fill our brains with what everyone else is doing – it tricks us into thinking that’s the way we need to function in order to be relevant and successful. As someone who very much got into blogging by accident, I can hand on heart tell you that you absolutely don’t have to sell yourself short. Your work should always be a reflection of your personality and your passion – the right people will always be there to support you and follow along with your adventures…
Photographs by Adriana
Dress | Realisation Par
Jacket | And Other Stories
Jumper c/o | And Other Stories
Bag | Simon Miller
Beret | Topshop
SHOP THE LOOK
Hear, hear! ??
First of all, I love this outfit and your hair down. Really. Love it !
And of course, I had to say that I enjoy this post so much because, as always, you share your thoughts and not only about an outfit (which can be quite boring if it’s always the case …). You are just so honest and real. You actually look like a “normal person” if I can say that, and I don’t find blogger/youtubeur as real, not that often anyway.
Thank you darling. I really enjoyed reading this, because it’s a really hard time for me in blogging. Not sure what to do next, overwhelmed with driving traffic, etc. So, you post really made me think and inspired me to do what I love.
Really enjoyed reading this!Very inspiring?thank you!
I totally agree Alice! You never really know how a post is going to do until after it’s published. I’ve had posts I was so sure my readers would love barely get acknowledged and I’ve also had posts that I felt a bit reluctant to put up but everyone loved them. As you said, we need to post what we love. It’s hard to do sometimes but it’s the best advice.
PS: Love the outfits!
xxCoco Bella Blog
Thank you! And definitely, there’s no real way of knowing what will go down the best – it’s easier to just to focus on the content we are most passionate about xx
I love this! Sometimes we all need reminding to keep doing what we’re passionate about, it’s why we started this in the first place! And I also just need to say, you’re not just doing an ‘okay job’ – you’re doing an amazing job! I always love your photos and posts!
Aww thank you so much – really means so much xx
This was the most refreshing and genuine blog I’ve had the pleasure of reading. It honestly feels like after having read through several How To’s concerning getting followers or turning a blog into a business that there is really only one road to success and it’s so nice to be reminded that that’s not the goal at all, but to exercise your own unique creativity.
So thanks for sharing! It’s rare when social media leaves one feeling refreshed and your posts really do.
Aww thank you so much – totally agree with you! The main focus should to be creative and the right people will support along the way. I hate reading posts about how to grow followings/suss out Google analytics etc. Makes everything such a chore! xx
I love the format of your blog. Your written content feels very authentic and I am often able to connect with it – if not at least appreciate it. You inspire me to want to write content of more substance myself! x