I read something really interesting the other day, it said: I wish we could make bloggers do a normal 9-5 job so they can see what it's like to really work. It bothered me actually, it bothered me quite a bit. It has however given me a very nice idea for a blog post. I've wanted to talk about blogging and what 'blogging full time' actually entails for quite some time, but it's a tough topic to talk about because well, blogs are generally wanderlusty and full of beautiful things, but, you know me, I love to tackle personal posts and I always get a good response from you so challenge accepted. I also want to knock the whole 'doing something creative' isn't a job thing on the head (now that really bothers me), I also want to talk about freelance life in general. I keep asking you guys on Twitter what you want me to write about and a few of you said freelancing - so here we go, the ups, the downs, the everythings, let's talk about blogging as a 'real life' job and freelancing.
Let the ramble commence...
I don't blame a lot of people for thinking that blogging is a whirlwind thing to do, my grandparents certainly don't get it. They see gifts coming through the door, hear about me going abroad often, but I guess that's what blogging does, we create something and show you the end product, no-one really (apart from on Snapchat and vlogs) see's the behind the scenes...now if you want to read a blog post slating blogging, you're in the wrong place. One thing I'll never do is slate blogging, it's the best thing that's happened to me and I adore it. Let's just get that straight first.
- "Blogging Isn't A Real Job" - Anything that makes you money is a real job. Simple as. I personally don't have an issue with anyone making money (unless illegal) and as long as all content is genuine, it's totally fine by me. I get crazy excited when I see bloggers doing epic partnerships with well known, amazing brands. If anything, it should be celebrated - brands are coming to bloggers, real people to influence and work with, rather than big glossies. I think that's something to be very proud of. I love my magazines, don't get me wrong, but I think it's amazing that brands are working with every day blogging girls. I actually find it a complete honour to work with brands, particularly brands I have used and loved for years. Take the adidas and Clinique campaigns I did for example (you all knew about them because I shouted about them from the rooftop), I was so proud to work alongside two crazy well known brands. No-one should feel bad about doing sponsored content, as long as it's all declared and with most bloggers, it is, then it's fine. Just because something is sponsored, it doesn't mean the person loves it any less, a person can genuinely adore something, even if it's sponsored. Whilst blogging may not seem conventional, it certainly isn't, it can still be a job. Just like baking cookies every day can be a job or running social media accounts. New jobs pop up every day. Blogging is something that for me, accidentally happened though. When I started my blog, I didn't know PR's existed, I certainly didn't know it could ever be 'a job'. I just rambled on about the things I loved. I still ramble on about the things I love. Nothing has changed really, my content has just grown up with me (I'm so glad I no longer take my blog photos with my iPhone!).
- "Bloggers should try a 9-5 job" - I speak for myself and most other bloggers when I say that blogging is much more than a 9-5 job. I'm not competing with people who do other jobs here, because I am well aware that everyone (everyone around me anyway) works really hard. My Mum has worked in banking since the age of 16, she has worked her way up. She tirelessly worked every single day with two children as a single Mum. That lady is my inspiration so I would never ever say blogging is harder than other jobs, it's just different. Take Sally who works in McDonalds, Susie who works in Asda and Carl who works in finance - everyone is allowed to take a different path and it doesn't mean that one job is harder than the other. Okay, bloggers don't save lives like doctors but neither do journalists or photographers or people who work in banks? Every single job is different and brings something to society, actually, I speak for most bloggers too when I say the majority of us have done 9-5 jobs but also, many of us have studied for degrees as well. I have full time blogger friends and they have pharmacy degrees, medicine degrees, you name it. Just because someone writes about beauty, it doesn't mean they're not intelligent. Take a look at my CV for example, I interned at numerous PR companies when I was in college (decided it definitely wasn't for me, but stuck out those long 8am-6pm days without being paid anyway just for the experience, over and over again), I worked at a broadcasting company again, unpaid, I worked in a supermarket for two years (making people salads and pizzas), three nights a week whilst studying for my GCSE's and A-Levels, I also used to work in a hair dressers serving tea and coffee to customers part time Saturdays and Sundays when I was 16. After this, I worked at a clothing store every single weekend. When I was 16-18, I'd work 16 hour weekends and then do three nights a week straight after 6th form at the supermarket. Did I need to work 20 hours a week on top of studying? No. So why did I do it? My family have always told me how important it is to 'get your hands dirty' and that's what I did. It meant I had my own money, could stand on my own two feet but also, learnt valuable people skills. Even when I was at University I had a part time job and worked every single weekend in my first two years at University. Since the age of 15, I have been working. I think it's crazy to assume that bloggers don't work/have never done the standard 9-5.
- What kind of hours do bloggers work? - So onto the hours, anyone who says blogging is easy really doesn't get it, this isn't me moaning about blogging because every single day I feel so fortunate that I am able to do what I love for a living but, it isn't luck and it certainly doesn't come without hard work and again, I agree, these hours are 'easier' than the hours a doctor does for example, but, we still work long hours! Blogging really is a 24 hour job, from photography to content creation to videography, to being your own agent, communicating, emailing, invoicing, producing, editing and replying 24/7 on social media, the list goes on. I don't mind, I wouldn't change it for the world and I think it's amazing. Ever since I was young I always wanted to be the editor of a magazine and with a blog, you are the editor of your own space on the internet. Not only are you the editor who over sees everything, but you do the photography, the filming, the content, you come up with all the ideas, you share it, you are the face behind the blog.
- But bloggers are always on holiday? - Whilst it may look like we all go away on holiday a lot, usually, we're out there creating beautiful content, getting up at the crack of dawn for the best lighting, lugging crazy heavy equipment with us everywhere we go. No, this isn't me moaning (sorry if it seems like I am!) because I wouldn't change it for the world, but, a lot of hard work goes into getting that 'Instagram' worthy shot. That's why I like to be active on social media (Twitter, Snapchat and vlogs) because then I can still show the real, raw side of me, away from the curated Instagram photos. When I go away with blogger girls on trips, we talk about blogging, we spend hours on our laptops writing, curating and then, photographing. Blogger boyfriends turn into photographers. Actually, one of the reasons I ended up breaking up with my ex (read about my boyfriend troubles on my post here if you missed that) is because we literally couldn't relax together, everything was a photo opportunity and if it wasn't, I'd be busy doing work. I'm a self-confessed workaholic and freelance life doesn't help that, I became obsessed with my phone, obsessed with snapping every single thing, I actually was on my phone more than I talked to him. It was a real issue. Thankfully, I'm away from that now and seem to have a bit more of a balance, but I've seen it in other bloggers, it becomes addictive and there isn't a line between real life and work life. Blogging is real life (for me, anyway as my blog is personal and I choose to be like that with you).
- "Creative people are dumb" - When I lived in Canada I had this debate, seriously. Just because I studied a subject which was in the 'arts' school, I was seen as dumb. Seriously. I was verbally attacked by a group of engineers who told me because I didn't do maths/science/traditional subjects, I wasn't very intelligent. This is such an old school argument. I left school with very good grades, something I'm very proud of and really don't think creativity defines someone. Even if you didn't leave school with good grades, I think it's amazing that creative jobs are finally becoming more of the norm. It's great that creativity is celebrated by most now. Your job, your hobbies, your passions do not define your intelligence. Neither do grades!
- The ups of freelancing - You can do it from your bed, you can wear pyjamas, it's flexible, you can work as little or as much as you wish. I feel so fortunate that I am able to work every single day on something I love. I promise you guys that I will work harder and make sure everything I put out there is amazing for you. Through freelancing, I've met some incredible friends, I've had some incredible experiences and I hope, this is just the beginning!
- The downs of freelancing - You get out what you put in, you have to work really hard (as in any job!), there's no-one telling you what to do, time off doesn't really exist as you don't know when the next piece of work could come, holiday? holidays definitely don't exist!, if you have a day off - there is only you to play catch up, you will spend a lot of time chasing invoices so must be organised!
I really don't have many 'downs' of freelancing even though it looks that way. I would never moan or complain about my job as it's incredible I can do what I love, every single day. But, certain people (probably not even you reading this right now, as I'm sure you're more than aware just how much behind the scenes work goes into the social media world) do judge people for taking a creative path.
So there we have it, you can follow any path you wish. Just because someone is creative, it doesn't mean they're not intelligent. We should celebrate these young people who have built companies and jobs for themselves. I personally am very inspired by so many bloggers, in so many different ways. Young people who are set up as fully functioning limited companies, working their bums off every single day to do something they adore? I salute you. It's cool to do something different. Maybe a conventional job isn't for everyone!
You can read my blogging tips post/things blogging has taught me here. You can read my personal posts here.
How do you feel about freelancing? How do you feel about blogging not being a real job?
Lots of love, Em x
Don't forget to follow me on bloglovin! to stay up to date with my posts!
I would also love it if you could subscribe to me on YouTube here!