You guys, I’m so late on honoring and shouting out women during the all-too-brief “Women’s History Month.” You’d have to be under a rock to have missed the interesting and uncertain times that swept the world with this pandemic. Now that I have caught my breath a bit, I’ve been reflecting on some of the women who’ve been extremely supportive in my journey as a lifestyle blogger and entrepreneur (I’m a serial side-hustler with several brands I’m passionate about). The funny thing is that my biggest cheerleaders have been women I did not know, something about my brand just resonated with them. Some time ago, I was featured by fellow girl boss and entrepreneur, T.L. Hayden. She runs an incredible design and branding company (lovetlhadyden.com). She spent a lot of time curating profiles of women she believed to be making an impact in the blogosphere.
T.L. asked me some fun facts about being a “girl boss.” Here’s my 101, that’s been slightly modified since I was originally featured by T.L. After all, I’ve had to modify my approach as times have changed. Hope you enjoy it!
How did you get into blogging?
I wanted an outlet to fulfill the creative, authentic side of myself. The person I can’t always be from 9-5 without a call from HR *smile*. If I wanted to rant about women’s issues, talk about the fire in my belly for Christ, or just babble on the latest in style, blogging felt like my safe space to do that. I spent hours researching, writing and taking photos. After a while, I decided that for all the effort I was putting, I should do those things that would allow my blog to become a legitimate business and brand.
What would you tell another fellow girl entrepreneur who wants to become a fashion blogger?
Go for it! Feel the fear, and do it anyway. There will be many times you doubt yourself or have moments of insecurity. I tell you now use that as your fuel to get your message across this blogging medium. Do not compare yourself, your growth or, your milestones while you blog to one other person. Stay in your brand and your authentic voice and it will resonate. Ignore the naysayers who talk about all of the other fashion bloggers that exist and how saturated the blogosphere is overall. There is only one YOU. Focus on those things that are uniquely you, that set you apart and serve it up to your community.
How do you stay creative?
It can be a challenge, that’s for sure. I have to check myself to be more “in-the-moment.” When I do that, I seldom miss opportunities or conversations where inspiration and creativity are sparked.
How do you stay organized to keep your blog flowing?
Aargh! It took me at least six months to figure this out. Other than using a blog planner, mind mapping has been my saving grace when it comes to keeping my blog flowing. This helped to kill my writer’s block when I was trying to force ideas after a super long day at my primary job. Using my blog as the center point, I created a branch for each topic I wanted to blog about (e.g. travel, style, inspiration, beauty, etc.). I then asked myself questions related to each branch and my consistent readers on my mind-map. The ideas either generated blog topics or topics for further research. I generated all sorts of madness but I also came out of it with a 90-day plan that I could sprinkle with doses of “in-the-moment” ideas that were timelier.
I’ve gotten a lot better about keeping an editorial and content planner, that allows me some flexibility, so I can pivot or go off course if necessary.
What’s your favorite app to use for blogging and why?
I like Bitly a lot, simply because it makes URLs short and easily shareable. The analytics are helpful – I know who has clicked a link or shared it. It is another way to see what may have appeal to my readers and what doesn’t at all, so that I can focus on creating the type of content that has value for my audience.
What’s your favorite word or quote or verse for this year, and why?
This verse has been the guiding principle in my life for a number of years and I’d reflected it on it in good and bad times in my life. “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths.” Early last year during a prophetic encounter, the verse was given to me as a part of a prophetic word. It has even more spiritual and personal meaning to me since that encounter.
I’ll leave you with this. Ladies, know that I am cheering for each and every one of you. Without a doubt, I know that we are better together, hashtag “community over competition.”