One year on...
It's been about a year since I began Han Meets World and made a real commitment to make something out of the blogging world. And what a year it has been! I don't even know where to begin. I never could have imagined what this year would have looked like. From a place where I had stability and comfort last summer. To being broke, unemployed and desperate at the beginning of this calendar year. And then rising from the ashes a thousand times taller to rest, momentarily, where I am now in a good space. The road to success is not something that can be expected.
I have learned a lot from this year, the key themes of which I am going to share with you:
Taking blogging seriously.
I've mentioned it a couple of times before, but HMW was the first time I really committed to making something of my online creativity. I started my first blog in 2013, but it quickly went quiet after six months because I was nervous about the hype it created, even in just a small uni setting.
While the year wasn't perfect, I definitely acknowledge myself for taking this on and keeping to it - more or less. I still haven't quite perfected the consistency of posting on Instagram, but it's a matter of scheduling my spare time effectively. Simples.
I have always been a bit shy of commitment but telling myself around February to keep going was the best thing I could have done. It was at my lowest that I was able to use my blog to share my experience. And then I would receive another message from someone that they were inspired by my journey. So it was a huge step in learning that a blog is not only for me, but for someone else as well. Take your creative outlet seriously.
So this is kind of embarrassing to admit in a way, but I definitely had an inflated ego when I started HMW. Like because I had blogged before I was going to get somewhere quickly. Like, because of my career path so far, I was going to be offered jobs left, right and centre. Life in London was going to be legendary.
Well hey, don't get me wrong, living in London has been pretty epic. Having all these incredible places on your doorstep - I can see the London Eye from my current upstairs bathroom - is something others can only dream of. Pop-ups and sample sales after work. Rooftop bars and culture by the plenty. You have to remember that living in London is expensive, and you quickly suss that if you are able to do one night out properly, you're on to a winner. In the beginning anyway.
I turned down a holiday to Dubai and Barcelona, several brunches and drinks after work. Because at one point I could afford rent and food for the week plus one date night. That was it.
The trouble with blogging and online work is it is SO easy to make it look effortless, and hey, if you're making it look effortless you're probably doing it right. But in taking the route of creativity it is more important than ever to keep a humble head. Whether that is working with brands, managing your schedule and plans or simply when you are with people. Blogging is more than free stuff, glamorous events and stardom. Be humble, be kind.
My online voice has altered slightly over time. But that's understandable when navigating a wide-reaching world. Even now, I am looking at how I want to approach my blog going forward. As you begin to grow, you begin to step into different spaces of mind and creativity. In this way, I have begun to discover who I am and the example I want to set. In establishing your voice and what works for you, you can begin to create the community and the work you would like to see around you. And trust me, it thrilling when you are simply able to explain your blog in a couple of sentences and people just get it - and are excited by it.
This year was the beginning of exploring and building a whole new community. It was amazing last summer to rock up to the Blogosphere Summer Party and be surrounded by likeminded people. It was amazing to find a community I finally felt a part of. I picked up a lot of knowledge which has helped on personal and professional levels along the way too.
Become aware of the place you live. Get to know what is important to you and go share that.
One of the most important things I got from this year was discovering my purpose: to inspire people to live their dreams.
And that is what gets me up every single day.
There is nothing like getting messages from you lovelies that I have inspired you to take a step in the life you truly want for yourself. So thank you! Thank you for being with me on this journey!
So what next?
Well, I have a job that I love and I live in central London. What's next is enjoying everything I have worked for. I will also be finishing my leadership course in September so I will probably be on the lookout for something new to learn, any suggestions?
I haven't forgotten my goals I set out in January, and so moving forward I am excited for the creative projects to get bigger. And for me to take on an even bigger game than I can see for myself right now. Considering this is my purpose, right!?
What would you like to see from Han Meets World by July 2018?