I am absolutely amazed every single day by the opportunities and benefits that being a personal blogger has given to me. In fact, I’d go as far as saying it is my dream job, only I never realised it until now. I remember a few years back after I’d left a job of 10 years when on maternity and I wondered, well what on Earth am I going to do now? I did work some part time evening and early morning jobs whilst trying to set my own business up, but I still always thought I’d need to return to a full time employed job eventually when the children were past the toddler stage.
I was talking to my husband Ben and he said ‘well what do you enjoy?’ The one thing that I always thought of was writing essays! I absolutely loved coursework at school (probably one of the few) and couldn’t wait to get stuck into the research and then piece together my essay. I was always so proud once I had my completed piece of work to hand in and thoroughly enjoyed the whole process. I loved to write and research. At that point I didn’t have a particular topic I was 100% passionate about, but loved to write about anything that interested me.
So I replied to Ben ‘I love writing, but essay coursework type writing, how can I do this for a living?’
‘I don’t know’
So it was left there at that point. Maybe 6 or so years ago. If I'd thought about it I could have started an essay writing service in the UK but I had no idea what to do with my essay writing skills back then. I continued to work pretty crappy part time jobs and tried to build my online jewellery business.
Luckily, the best thing I ever did was decide to start a blog for my jewellery business. Lylia Rose was originally a card shop on Etsy, and then I started this website to sell jewellery, which later turned into selling printed scarves. To try and get more views I started a blog. At first a business blog, then I tried to be a typical beauty and fashion blogger showing my bog standard beauty purchases and normal outfits (that was never going to work), then I did something that would change me forever. I started blogging about my lifestyle and the things that were really passionate to me: my family, healthy living, money, trying to run a business, parenting, home and garden.
All of a sudden I fell massively in love with blogging and the Lylia Rose blog was born! It took over my website (and my life) and has grown ever since. It’s become my full time job and passion and I am grateful every day.
Here are my top reasons why blogging is so great:
The best thing is it’s providing an income for me. I never even knew this was possible when I started my blog, but now I earn a full time wage. I do put in full time hours, so don’t be fooled thinking it’s easy! I did also blog for 3 years before monetising as it wasn’t my original plan, but if it’s yours then I expect you can earn money a lot quicker.
Blogging is so flexible. All you need is a laptop (or even phone) and an internet connection and you can write away. You can even write first in a notebook with a pen if that’s more your style. Ideas, blog posts and titles can be jotted down anywhere, on the go, at home, whilst travelling. You can blog in the morning, afternoon or evening. It’s flexible around parenthood and other work commitments.
Work from home
Blogging has given me the opportunity to work from home which is exactly my preferred method of working with young children. My youngest is in childcare only 21 hours per week, so I can be with him the rest of the time. My daughter is in school, but I’m able to attend assemblies and drop her off at 9am and collect at 3pm. There are a lot of disadvantages to working from home, but I’d still choose it to work for myself and be able to have the flexibility whilst my children are young and need full time care.
There is an amazing blogging community and everyone is so supportive. Sure, you’ll get the really competitive types and you’ll get them anywhere, but for the most part every blogger wants each other to succeed. There are numerous hashtag networking hours and Facebook groups where we all support each other. We can ask advice to one another, share opportunities and even get feedback. I’ve never known such a supportive community. It’s amazing and I love being a part of it. I only wish I had more time to contribute more.
I get to learn new things every day. Whether I’m researching for a personal blog post to learn more myself, or whether I’m writing for a brand and learning about them, their methods and values. I get to research every single day and teach myself new things about the topics I’m interested in as well as learning more about blogging. Starting a blog and turning it into a business isn’t as simple as just ‘writing stuff on the internet’. It involves so much learning – SEO, email marketing, tech stuff, basic coding, social media, promotion, pitching, invoicing, accounts, money management. There is so much involved when you run your own business, even as a self-employed person, but it’s wonderful to be able to learn so much. A great quote I love is ‘learn like you’ll live forever’.
Actually, this is probably my favourite reason – it’s so enjoyable! I get to do what I love and enjoy every single day – write. Yes there are lots of other parts to it like boring admin, aka ‘blogmin’, but ultimately I do get to write and spill my thoughts onto a blank page every day. I love a blank piece of paper or screen. It’s a blank canvas full of opportunity. I love when the words flow, then I can read back through and see what I’ve created on the page. I love to write and I only wish I’d discovered blogging years before I did so I could have realised my passion a long time ago.