How to make it work.
I always told myself growing up that I would never sit at a desk from 9-5, yet here I am, doing exactly that and typing to you from said desk. Prior to this, I had just graduated at the start of the year and was self-proclaimed “full-time blogging”. With my lifestyle and the constant demand on OOP props to increase the quality of creating content, it was impossible to keep up with a “full-time blogger’s” budget.
Not sure if you know or not, but I’m currently at my first full-time job. Technically, I’m a temp here through an agency but my biggest worry upon entering the big girl adulting realm was compromising my passion for having to work under someone else.
The reason I keep throwing the proverbial air quotes at that title is because it’s not a realistic role and is only available (IMO) to those that are established by becoming an LLC, have an office and a working team inside of it. Otherwise, it’s impossible to be paying rent (especially in LA), bills, food, gas, etc. jumping from paycheck to paycheck and if a potential gig falls into your lap or not.
With the way the economy is teeter-tottering in this war with tax reforms, the fashion industry’s existence is being threatened, in which magazines are already retracting from their paper form into digital. Now retailers are next to experience another hit. This means that bloggers will be trapped in a very awkward position, where we may be even more heavily relied on for marketing or brands may not have the budget to sponsor our posts or trip to the Hamptons with their brick and mortar’s closing down. Evidently, the influencer paycheck will cease to exist if these laws are approved. Our worth will go down along with the rest of the industry.
In other words, it’s starting to become more common that influencers are where I’m at: their 9-5, only to head to their 5-9 aka their blog. We have to fund our dreams and this is our only way to do so.
But have no fear; I’ve found some helpful tricks on how to balance your job versus your passion. (Disclaimer: this may not apply to everyone since everyone’s jobs run differently.)
1.) Talking to your supervisor.
I was very clear with my supervisor that I did blog and the obligations that came with that from the very beginning. Fortunately for me, she was a stylist prior to the job and understood what it took to maintain a presence in the industry so she explained to me that as long as I finish my work, I can leave once it’s done.
With that, I realized that there are so many more hours in the day that we don’t fully utilize and that finding a balance is successful when you learn how to do so. I’ve learned to come to work earlier to leave earlier and get to my appointments and events. Everything depends on how you use your day.
2.) I plan and tend to emails while at work.
Although this may not be possible depending on where you work, but for me, I usually power through my work and milk the rest of my hours tending to logistics. Sitting at my desk with nothing to do, forces me to develop a routine of getting my emails done in a timely matter as well as settling phone calls, writing blog posts, calendaring appointments, etc. Honestly, it was a lot harder for me to sit and write everything down, especially during the months where I’ve had 20+ projects/campaigns at the same time. I’ve found I work best when there’s a desk in front of me and upon manifesting this routine, I’ve never been more organized.
Luckily for me, overtime is an option almost every weekend or through the week. When there are days I have to miss due to reaching certain deadlines, going to events, and meeting clients during office hours, I have the option of making it up later with the sacrifice of a bit of my paycheck. It’s a choice!
My supervisor allows me to take off as many days as I’d like since I’m agency but in that respect, I try to meet her halfway by taking on more assignments, working extra days, and using my OOO days frugally so I can take longer vacations or business trips if need be.
Being plugged into this job as a temp has it’s pros and cons. For me, I’ve been offered the full-time position at my job but respectfully declined as I preferred being a temp. In being a temp, I’m not obligated to stay for the entire 40 hours and I get a higher pay than those that are full-time due to their health insurance cuts. (I don’t need independent health insurance until I’m 26, so I’m still good!) Instead, I would’ve rather remained a temp to procure more experience for my resume to increase my market worth through other freelance opportunities. I can later choose to have health insurance through the agency so long as I continue working at a job through them.
There are plenty of agencies out there if it’s something you’re interested in. They can throw opportunities to you for other areas you’re proficient in, even including blogging. Some off the top of my head include SyndicateBleu (This is the agency I’m in), JBC Style, and Creative Circle.
If you’re looking for a full-time job or a steady source of income while blogging, a full-time job is not as bad as it seems. Although, I’m still weary of the unexplored territory that comes with salary jobs, I’ve tried my best to learn how to navigate what I love versus what I have to do to survive. I realized that there are so many hours in my day that I could’ve used to earn money or be more productive but the fear that festered in feeling that I had to give up time that went towards my blog was all in my head.
Balancing both is what it means to truly hustle. Full-time blogging isn’t, as much as most bloggers like to preach about. There’s more to that.
I do believe that it is possible to live as a full-time blogger but let’s be real. Most of the time, it’s a facade. I believe we need to be pushing ourselves more and more out of our comfort zones to grow. If you truly love something, you will do anything to make it happen and with everything you choose, there is always a consequence.