What I’ve Learned In My 30s + Blogging Tips For Every Kind Of Blogger
As I approach my two year anniversary with Brunchinista and recently celebrated my 30+1 birthday, I wanted to share with you what I’ve learned the past year in blogging, relationships, love and self-growth.
Many of you who follow my blog may have read in the past some of my real talk and blogging tips post. I asked all of you on Instagram if this would be something you would want to read and you all said YASSSSS!
Let me start with saying that your 20s really are a defining decade. They shape who you are as a person. Every decision, relationship and person you encounter can really change the course of your life. If you started blogging not that long ago, think of that ONE girl who inspired you to get into it and really go for it. You should thank her! Not only because kindness goes a long way, but because we all at one point or another were inspired by someone to begin this journey.
So I’ll start with life lessons in the past year.
WHAT I’VE LEARNED IN MY 30S
YOU ARE STRONG
When I lost my job twice in the last year, well it was a roller coaster of emotions. The first time around I was EXTREMELY blessed and found something literally in the same week. The next time around, I wasn’t as lucky. And life is just like that. Sometimes we’re just lucky and sometimes not so much. But life will REALLY show you who you are in those hard moments. I can’t tell you how many jobs and interviews I went on. But I NEVER gave up. I remember my sister calling me one day and saying “you are resilient” because despite how many failures I’ve had in life there has never been an obstacle that I haven’t overcome.
So despite the huge setback, many tears, nights of wine, questioning what I was doing with my life, it was LITERALLY what I needed. I stopped and questioned everything – every person I had in my life and every decision I made. I spent four months really looking at my life and wondering what was next for me. I realized that LIFE KEEPS GOING and I had to as well. I started freelancing for a company doing copywriting which is what most of my experience in. I pushed my blog so much because I had the time to do so. I honed in on what BRUNCHINISTA is all about and you know what? I survived. I literally came out on the other side with a great job and now living in a new city. Every single day I wake up I am extremely grateful that I have a job, that I have this blog and that I NEVER EVER GAVE UP.
YOU ARE WHO YOU ARE
I’m going to tell you right now take a good look at yourself. Who you are is not going to change. Sure you’ll evolve and mature and all that life stuff. But who you are to your core will always be you. You know that little voice you hear that tells you, well maybe I shouldn’t do that or DUDE GO FOR IT. Yeah that voice. As you get older it gets LOUDER AND LOUDER, until it’s like GIRL, do we need to have a talk? Through your 20s you spend most of your time questioning who you are and wondering why things are the way they are. In the last year I’ve learned in my 30s that I’ve become PROUD of who I am, in fact confident. YES I AM FROM LA. YES I love wine and brunch. THIS IS WHO I AM. And you know what? I feel SO much better than thinking, wait should I have said that? Was that weird? Listen, not everyone is going to like you. You’re gonna have to learn that one the hard way. AND THAT’S OKAY. Not everyone is gonna be your BFF and sometimes people won’t get YOU. You just keep being you. At the end of the day, it’s all of you got. Which leads me to my next one.
NOT ALL FRIENDSHIPS ARE CREATED EQUAL
You know that friend you keep talking to even though she/he is kinda crummy but for whatever reason you keep trying to make the effort and you know they’re just not that friend. We all have different levels of friendships in our life. Does it mean you have to completely not talk to the person? Probably not. Unless the person is STRAIGHT UP bad for you, there’s no harm in occasionally catching up and being friendly. But know that not every person will be at the same level. This was the hardest lesson for me because if you’re my friend I care about you. I want to hear about your day. I’ll text you all the time. Heck, I’ll even call you to make sure you’re alive. That’s who I am. I make sure to keep in touch with everyone as much as I can. But I also know the people who are my true core friends and the rest are just people that are in varying levels. Think about the first three people you call when something awesome happens in your life. Most likely those are your core friends. They know it. You know it. Keep them close forever because GOOD friends are hard to come by.
DON’T TAKE THINGS PERSONALLY
Raise your hand if you’re guilty of doing this. *Raises hand*. Okay, this is something I am continuously and consciously am working on so bare with me. The other night my friend explained it to me and it literally finally clicked. So now, every time someone gets mad, or acts a certain way, I always think, I wonder what’s going on with them? Instead of taking it SUPER personally. Chances are, people don’t viciously just try attacking you in life. People are very self-involved and most of the time aren’t thinking about you at all. Which is why, when people react certain ways to things, question why they are behaving that way instead of making it about yourself. You’ll save yourself a lot of grief. And honestly, it takes the weight off of starting something that isn’t even there. TRUST ME this is a very hard lesson to learn that I haven’t yet mastered, but the best way I could put it is, not everything is about you. In fact, it most likely isn’t about you.
NO ONE KNOWS WHAT THEY’RE DOING
Let me tell you something, those people that seem like they have it all figured out and they’ve “got it all together”, some of them do. But there is no age where you just wake up one day and you’re like this is what I’m going to do for the rest of my life. We all evolve as people. Our interests change, our skills change and so do our goals. If you think, I’m a lost 20 something year old and I don’t know what I’m doing. GUESS WHAT? MOST 20 something year-olds don’t know what they’re doing because that’s what your 20s are for! Most of us are just running around trying to FIGURE IT OUT. Eventually you get into the groove of things and you start to narrow down priorities and things that REALLY matter to you. Your 20s are for having fun and discovering who YOU are. It’s a fun journey I’ll tell you, so make it a story you can tell someday. Just remember to be the best version of you that you can be. That’s ALL you can do. At the end of the day, everyone is just figuring it out. 20s, 30s, 40s, it doesn’t matter how old you are. Life happens and sometimes you have to start all over.
WHAT I’VE LEARNED ABOUT BLOGGING
I LOVE WRITING
This is actually a major one that I constantly forget because it’s something I JUST DO. I started blogging because I love to write. The last three months I actually stopped writing as much because I just didn’t have the time. With starting a new job, commuting back and forth, and finding the time to do all the things, I lost sight of this huge component of why I started to do it in the first place. I got my degree in journalism and have written for magazines in all of the cities I’ve lived in: Phoenix, Los Angeles, Eugene and hopefully soon Portland. When I was younger I use to write poetry and every now and then I write little excerpts that I’ve compiled over the years in hopes of one day writing a book. I’m not sure what I would write about but it’s always been a goal of mine to have my name printed on a book.
YOU ARE ALWAYS LEARNING
So many bloggers ask me where to start. You can read learn more about how working with brands can help you as a blogger in my last post here. There is no one way to answer this. And there isn’t a handbook either. This is just something you learn over time. You start figuring out what your niche is and what your brand is all about. You start to develop relationships with brands and eventually get to work on campaigns. It’s a long process and no one just gets really good overnight. It takes a lot of work. And I think that’s what most people in the industry who are starting off don’t understand! It took me five years to actually develop Brunchinista and I’ve been blogging for over six. Just let that sink in. We’ve all got different journeys. Embrace the growing pains and stop focusing on how to GET THERE faster.
FOLLOWERS AREN’T EVERYTHING
PLEASE don’t shoot me for saying this. But in reality, after how many people have bought their followers, brands have taken notice and it’s lost it’s meaning. Obviously there are some who care about how many followers you have but it’s not everything. I would rather have 8000 LOYAL followers than 100K who rarely see my stuff and never engage. With Instagrams ever-changing algorithm, you can’t predict what’s going to happen next. So keep creating content, being YOU, and don’t worry about the followers. I know it’s hard but I GUARANTEE you will be happier in the long run. It’s hard to grow a following so focus on creating a brand that’s LEGIT. Focus on what inspires you beyond your followers. Because at the end of the day, Instagram is an app that can crash and burn at any second leaving you in the dust. Put your energy where it matters to you most.
I CANNOT stress this enough. The industry is highly oversaturated with people who just pick up a phone and take photos and call themselves influencers. How are YOU going to set yourself apart? Stop worrying about how this girl has this many followers and her engagement is x percentage. Worry about yourself. And PS copying someone else is NOT going to get you anywhere. I understand being inspired by others and in the beginning it’s almost okay to see something you see someone else do and make it your own. But eventually, you gotta do your own thing. Don’t just chase after something cause you saw someone else do it. Or post a photo that someone else posted with the same dress, at the same place, with the same filter. It’s habitual for people in a community to want to be alike but I’m encouraging you to be yourself. If you like style and that’s who you are, post about style ALL DAY EVERYDAY. Until you figure out what else you wanna do. Don’t just post a photo to post. Don’t just take any collaboration because you’re desperate. Every single thing you do matters. And please for god’s sake don’t ONLY take a mirror selfies. Go outside, make someone take a photo of you and take your time with the content you create. There’s obviously an exception, but no one wants to go to a feed that looks like you stay inside all day in front of a mirror. At least I don’t.
Don’t be that person that thinks they’re better than everyone else. I am the first person to say, if you recognize me in the street, say hi to me! I love when people get excited about my blog and come introduce themselves. It literally makes my day. But hearing other bloggers say things about other bloggers who were not kind to them because of their following (this has happened to me before too), or meeting someone who’s so stuck up just because they’re above 100K and actually sometimes numbers that don’t even warrant that. At the end of the day we’re all human. 10K or 100K we’re all just trying to create something for ourselves. Now I’ll be the first to say I’m not that person who posts things like women supporting women, or reposting something that some big blogger says her fans that they are everything and she would never be mean to them. I think actions speak louder than words. Some of the best people I’ve met are the one’s who will meet up with me for coffee, drinks, brunch, DM me about things. They’re not flashing all over the place that they’re the best human ever and preaching KINDNESS. They JUST do it because it’s who they are at their core. It takes two seconds to be nice to someone and help them out. It’s a small industry and you better believe it someone will hear about it.
I hope this all helped you out a little bit. It’s a tough industry to be in. It’s extremely competitive, some days I don’t want to post anything and others I want to write a long blog post like this one, but just remember, you started doing it for a reason and keep that on the top of mind whenever things get frustrating and overwhelming.
As far as what I’ve learned in my 30s, I think it ties into all aspects of your life. I am more confident and more myself than I’ve ever been and I stand my ground on the things I believe in. And you should too! I still have a lot to learn and I hope you will all continue to read along this crazy journey we call life.
Let me know in the comments below if this helped you!
Would love your feedback.