The other day, I realized that it’s been about 6 months since I started working for myself. My first thought was; how the heck has it been 6 months already? On closer inspection, a lot has happened in the last 6 months and it feels like a long time since I had a 9-5. Even though I’ve been on my own for half a year, I’m still trying to define exactly what I do. I do freelance design and social media management for small businesses, but ultimately, I spend most of my time blogging, specifically the SEO side of the blogging world. No one tells you this when you decide to start a blog. You start finding this out when you do a quick search and you come across people who actually know what they are talking about like the Indexsy seo company. But it was so worth it, as I have a better understanding of it now. It’s pretty much up to you to do your own research if you want to achieve anything in this industry, or any for that matter. Additionally, this is why finding the ideal web hosting is imperative. If you are looking to start your own blog, then it might be worth checking out HostiServer. Between writing blog posts, shooting photos, social media management, and attending events, blogging easily becomes a full-time commitment.
Cardigan from Gap (Similar) | Oversized T-shirt from Brandy Melville (Similar) | Plaid Scarf from Gap (Similar) | Jeans from Joe’s Jeans (Similar) | Roll Over Boots from Roots | Round Sunglasses from Ray-Ban
The Ups and Downs of Full-Time Blogging
If you’re thinking about going full-time with your blog, then I’ve got to tell you something. There are a lot of ups and downs of full-time blogging.
I love blogging (and all that comes with it), so there are a lot of “ups”. Some days, I feel like I’m on top of the world. To see all of your hard work pay off in some way is the best feeling ever! Maybe this means landing a partnership with a brand you’ve been dreaming of working with, or hitting a milestone on social media. For instance, this morning, I woke up to a pleasant surprise. I’ve finally hit the 10k milestone on Instagram! That’s been one of my goals for ages and I feel incredible about that accomplishment. As well, I love hitting “publish” on content that I’m proud of, discovering new brands and connecting with incredible like-minded people. There are days when I feel like I’ve truly “made it” as a blogger (whatever that means).
But (and there’s a but), then there are those other days; weeks, even. Days when you feel as though you’ll never land another good campaign opportunity. Days when you lack any ounce of creativity in your entire body. There are times when you’ll second guess everything you do. The good thing about a 9-5 job is that you get the employee benefits, guaranteed monthly paychecks, a good routine, etc., but all this goes out the window when you freelance or blog. It’s one of the risks you have to weigh up to see if it’s worth it. I’m lucky to have something to fall back on if it goes wrong but not everyone has that. I still get frustrated with blogging all of the time. I get countless requests from brands who are looking to “work with me,” only to discover that they’re only willing to pay in product. Um. Sorry, but if I’m going to create a quality blog post with original photography and content for social media in addition to promoting your brand, a free pair of shoes isn’t going to cut it. And of course, when you have your “downs” as a full-time blogger, there are days when you wonder if you should go back to a traditional full-time job.
The reality is, no matter how “big” of a blogger you are, there will always be ups and downs of full-time blogging. It comes with the territory.
I recently went through one of these rough patches. I had very little work come through, a serious lack of motivation, and a full-time job opportunity being dangled in front of me. During this time, I questioned everything I was doing.
The Curveball in my Plans
A few weeks ago, I had an incredible job opportunity fall into my lap. Until then, I hadn’t seriously considered going back to a full-time job, but this one sounded perfect. For the sake of being professional, I won’t name any names, but it was a brand that I love and have worked with in the past.
On a random Friday night, I received a DM from one of my contacts at this brand. She was curious to know if I was looking for a job because she had the perfect opportunity for me. The position was posted online, but they hadn’t been thrilled with the applicants. Apparently, when they were discussing who they’d like to see in the role, my name came up. Naturally, I was flattered. I was also a little bit hesitant, but after chatting with her and reviewing the job description, I decided to apply.
After I sent in my application, I couldn’t get the job out of my mind. If I were to land that position, it would change everything. The job itself sounded amazing, but I was also excited about the possibility of working on the brand side, at a large company.
A couple of weeks later, HR reached out, and they wanted to connect for a phone interview. I was so excited! We jumped on a quick call and before I knew it, I had a in-person interview scheduled for the following week.
Going in, I wasn’t sure what to expect from the interview. After all, I already knew the person I was interviewing with! It turned out to be a lengthy interview, but it felt pretty informal. We went through some of the basic interview questions, while keeping it conversational. During our meeting, the person interviewing me mentioned that there were other candidates being considered, including an internal candidate. Um, hold on…what?! Up until I heard about the internal candidate, I thought I was a shoe-in. After all, they reached out to me! The job was supposed to be mine if I wanted it, right?
In the days that followed, I was a nervous wreck. I couldn’t stop second-guessing everything I said, nor could I stop wondering about the internal candidate.
Well, spoiler alert – I didn’t get the job. It was given to the internal candidate.
I was devastated by the news. It’s a miracle that I didn’t burst into tears while I was on the phone with them! Considering they reached out to me, I couldn’t believe they went with someone else. In hindsight though, I don’t think I had a chance against an internal candidate.
It’s okay though. I took a few days to mourn that loss and now we move on. For now, I will continue to blog full-time, but I will also continue to be open to new opportunities.
Like so many aspects of life, there are a lot of ups and downs of full-time blogging. The first 6 months of blogging full-time has been a roller coaster ride. Ultimately though, the ups do outweigh the downs. You just need to remind yourself of that. I also think it’s important to always stay open to new opportunities.
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I totally understand what you’re going through, and you summarized the feeling of being a full-time blogger so well! I feel like I’m on a rollercoaster, and debate wether to go back to work at an office weekly!
Sorry to hear about the job, and I would be pretty upset too if I had been recruited only for the job to have gone to an internal candidate. I think that something even bigger is on the horizon!
I figured you would understand the feelings. I’m sure we all go through some of the same struggles, just in different ways.
And thanks so much – I hope so 🙂
Blogging full-time sounds so intense! I imagine it’s nice to work from home and go by your own hours, but I can see how it could get really tough sometimes too, so good for you for sticking with it and making the best of rough times! I’m sorry you didn’t end up getting the job! Congrats on hitting 10k!
It’s really nice not to have a commute, especially after doing that for 4 years. There’s challenges no matter what you do, they’re just different.
Thanks for sharing! Most things in life are ups and downs, gotta focus on the ups. Love the outfit.
I agree 100%! Thanks for reading!
I enjoyed reading this, thanks so much for sharing it! I admire you for sticking with blogging full time and accepting the ups and downs! Sorry you didn’t get the job..I hope that things only continue to stay up for you 🙂
I’m so glad you enjoyed reading the post! It’s easier to accept the downs because there’s so many ups, too.
Victoria Stacey says
So many ups and downs – I’m sure! I’m considering making the break to freelance and blogging at some point, but not sure when will be right!
I don’t know if there is a “right time.” Some would probably argue that I was a bit premature in making that decision, but I went with it. If you ever want to pick my brain, you know where to find me 🙂
Millennial Shatterbelt says
I loved this post because it shows a backstage point a view we as readers and in my case new bloggers don’t get to see a lot. Thank you for sharing and congrats on 6 months blogging full time!!
I’m so glad you enjoyed the post. There’s so much to learn as a new blogger – I hope you stick with it and enjoy becoming part of the community! 🙂
Amanda Montgomery says
Such a great description of venturing into full time blogging. If it provides any solace, I was in this position, and I accepted the job, and I ended up doing the job for 6 months, and so completely regretted it! It took so much away from my blog and my progress, and as lovely as it was to not only have a guaranteed paycheque, but working for a brand I love, but at the end of the day you are building into someone else’s future, not your own. So I say you are better off, because you have the hustle, the vision, and the skills for blogging, and I know you will go far!!!
I had no idea that had happened! It seems like you’ve been KILLING it with your blog, so if it’s any consolation, you hid that well. Thank you so much for the kind words and encouragement – it really means a lot! I hope to see you again soon 🙂
first off – congrats on working for yourself for 6 months! That itself is something to be proud of. I know how hard disappointment can be, especially when the position seems perfect for you, so I’m sorry you had to go through it. I’m one of those “things happen for a reason” people, so its probably best you’re on your own right now anyway!
Thank you so much, Maddy. I actually connected a lot with your post about job titles, because I was going through all of that when I read it.
And – I’m TOTALLY with you on that school of thought.
Mónica Sors - Mes Voyages à Paris says
I really understand you, this is like a rollercoaster, but you have to be strong and keep doing what you love, this is so important. I really love this post dear!! Have a lovely weekend
MES VOYAGES À PARIS
NEW POST: TOUS MEDALLIONS | MIX & MATCH + EMBROIDERED JACKET
Thank you so much – I really appreciate the kind words!
I definitely can see the ups and downs of blogging full-time. A lot of hardwork is put into it, and sometimes the partnership is frustrating because they don’t realize the amount of time and effort it takes to just get paid by a ‘product’. Also, I see that job opportunity has a positive thing for you. It sucks not getting the job, but I also think that means there are more out there for you just waiting!
I think a lot of brands and agencies are catching on, but there’s still a LONG way to go. And I get it! If I wasn’t living and breathing the world of blogging and content creation, I would underestimate the work that goes into it too.
And I hope so! Opportunities and experiences can come out of nowhere, especially if you’re open to them 🙂
Blogging is so up and down for me too, so I imagine with it being full-time there is even more pressure. You are doing so well! Loving this look too.
Straight A Style
It’s definitely a lot of pressure…but I’m thankful to have some other work to keep me afloat 😉
Ashley Michelle says
Jackie, this is such a great post. I’ve been at both ends of the internal candidate dilemma. I actually lost a job to an external candidate once because they had a law degree and I clearly did not (which wasn’t a requirement in the job posting btw). Don’t count yourself out! At the end of the day, you really don’t know who or what you’re up against. Also, going for interviews every now and then is actually good practice and keeps you sharp for when that perfect opportunity does come along :)!
Thank you so much for the insight. I can’t even imagine how upset I would be if I was an internal candidate, losing a position to someone external.
I do agree that it helps to have the interview experience. It keeps you on your toes, that’s for sure!
Kirsten Wendlandt says
I love this post and love your honesty both about being a full time blogger and about the job you interviewed for. It always sucks when we don’t get a job we want but life has a reason and maybe this means you really are meant to keep focusing on your blog! I love what you do and find it totally inspiring. I myself hope to one day be able to be a full time blogger while I work on pursuing my acting career. The idea of no longer having to have a regular 9-5 or restaurant job is both exhilarating and scary at the same time.. Keep doing what you do Jackie!
So inspiring to hear you open up about your experience, Jackie. And it can only mean that bigger and better things await you. I have days all the time where I feel like I’m doing this for nothing and no one gets it, but then there are some days things just click. Keep doing what you’re doing! You not only produce amazing content but continue to inspire me!
Aw, lady- what a bummer about the full-time gig. No one can blame for thinking you were a shoe-in; that’s TOTALLY how I would’ve read that situation, too.
All that being said, I think the content you create is awesome + authentic; your passion for the products/brands you work with comes through via your blog, your Insta (especially your Stories!), and your voice. So keep on keepin’ on! 🙂
Le Stylo Rouge
This is such an inspiring post! I’ve recently gone full time on my blog too and have felt everything you talked about. It’s definitely a roller coaster ride, but I do think it’s worth it in the end! Keep on doing what you’re doing, I know it’ll pay off, and sorry about that job, that’s too bad but definitely their loss!