I came to this realization in the past year that I do not want to be an “influencer”. I felt immediate shame following this realization. What’s wrong with me? Am I just not ambitious enough? What kind of designer doesn’t want thousands of people following them (to be clear, I wouldn’t mind a bigger following, just not the work required to get there)? Ever since I started this blog, I have enjoyed writing and sharing my projects as a creative outlet. However, I have never identified with the “blogger persona”. It has never aligned with who I am. At my core, I am a person who loves to create , a slow living lifestyle, and not living in the lime light. It has felt at times that there are two parts of me that feel at odds with one another. The need to create/share, and the need to have a quiet simple life with my family.I have wrestled with these questions for so long, and this last week it came to me.
First and foremost, I identify as a designer, not as a blogger/influencer. There is a very clear difference, and there’s a reason I have never monetized this blog. Secondly, my love for slow living is at odds with the other side of me who wants to have and grow a business. I don’t want to “hustle”, and never have wanted that. (Please note: here I’m defining “hustle” as doing everything to reach the top, I’m not referring to anyone who is trying to earn a basic living). Am I allowed to say that? I don’t even think there’s anything wrong with “hustling”, except that I know it is completely wrong for me. I don’t want to push products on people- rather I want to encourage people to be more resourceful. I don’t mind sharing the things that have made my life easier or brought joy even, but I don’t want to be another voice in that arena. I am also jealous for my family time, and my privacy is very important to me..
Over the years I have gone through short bouts of trying to fit the mold and keep up with the demand for continuous new content, regular posts on specific days, and it’s never worked for me. I want to write when I feel inspired, not to keep up a schedule. I want to share DIY projects when I have them, not create DIY projects for the sole purpose of creating content, and I want to take on clients because it’s right for me and my family, not because I need something to share for fear of becoming irrelevant. It’s difficult to drown out all the noise of “shoulds” for blogging schedules, algorithms, and other business growing related strategies. Don’t get me wrong, social media is amazing (getting your portfolio out there for free!), but our digital culture is demanding more and more……and personally I’m not willing to give what’s being asked. I have to “do me.”
So where does that leave me? The same place I’ve been this whole time- just with a very clear goal on my end. The goal is to continue designing and learning and seeing where that takes me, not to “hustle” my way to the top. Yes I want to grow my business (especially as my girls get older), but I will be over here on my little piece of the internet not following the rules, posting when I have something to say or share, continuing to say “no” to projects that aren’t right for me and my family, and saying “yes” to the right things.
To end, here is a picture of our fire pit in the works. We want to get a new fire pit eventually (I might be spray painting it for the time being), and add some pea gravel to define the space. The best part? There’s no time-table, after all- it’s on my terms.