Okay, seems I took some extra extra time off. Why so, what will change – and why I was pondering quitting – in this post.
Ah, it’s so good to be back, gang.
But only because the captain of this ship finally has reasons to clap on all the sails. Confessions of a humble blogger, ahoy!
The Challenge of… Self-Exploitation
If you remember, I started my 30 Day Challenge in April to try and make myself better and my life healthier by the time of my birthday in May.
Unsurprisingly, this lead me to needing a blogging break.
Why so? Well, the amount of work needed here has long outgrown the yardsticks of a mere hobby. What’s way worse than that, it has long stopped being rewarding in a sense a hobby should be; instead, it’s become a self-imposed and tedious job it was never meant to become.
It was even worse than that: supporting ethical brands, I have myself ended up producing time-consuming, research- and cost-intensive content in a way that – surprisingly – bordered heavily on self-exploitation. And because of that, I often found myself abandoning popular (and really useful!) formats such as the Interactive Quest Story or Mudras & Manicure simply out of exhaustion and often frustration.
Homemade problems? Oh, absolutely.
Common problems of people who burn for what they do? Definitely.
Healthy? Not in a thousand years.
When a post about calling it a day starts to seem enticing… that’s what many bloggers do if their blog doesn’t turn out satisfying.
Wouldn’t quitting solve all my time problems and contribute to having more resources for self-care and health?… Write those novels that sit in my computer waiting for the perfect time not unlike frozen eggs in a fertility centre?
The more honest and deep insight was that the core of the problem needs to be tackled. Because the problem with my exaggerated understatement would continue to show up elsewhere, and for the rest of my life.
See, when I first started BEAUTYCALYPSE, I had of course 100% passion for the topic! And yet 100% halfarsedness when it came to the key things of blogging: I never planned or wished for my blog to go REALLY BIG.
They say you should never start a race that you don’t want to win.
I admit that I have started a race that I’ve been proactively seeking to screw up.
Don’t get me wrong #1: I do care, with head and heart for the genuinely green lifestyle!
Don’t get me wrong #2: I was and I am genuinely happy, proud even, to have gathered and met YOU, so many wonderful, loyal readers (five-digit now in the fourth year, from all over the globe, how glorious is that?!<3<3<3)!
But to do anything to actually attract more readers? Growth strategy? SEO? Promotions? GOSH, NO! My blog is being read because of its real content by select wonderful people who care!
Now you need to understand one thing: I didn’t do so out of naiveté or lack of understanding how to increase-grow-attract – I do that for a living.
But having worked in publishing and advertising for a decade, I feared getting onto that slippery slope where all content is dictated by money in a manner it, the content, becomes irrelevant glossy noise – a problem classic magazine publishers have created and then suffered, a problem that the biggest blogs are experiencing now too, in a fast-forward manner.
It’s further indisputable that most genuinely ethical brands rarely even have the money to buy content. It’s the mass market green brands that can afford advertising and influencer marketing.
Disclaimer: I’m not saying only niche brands are worth our time and money! What I’m saying is that there are only few companies out there that can afford supporting a green beauty or slow fashion blog financially.
So my decision of “keeping niche” was part dictated by financial reasoning, part by the desire to speak independently, and part by my personal issues that do I have with all kinds of fame, the latter being the force that drove me towards seeking the nichiest niche out there.
Hi, my name is Nath and I’m scared boneless of fame and success.
All eyes on me!
There’s a strange dynamics of unwanted self-sabotage that unwinds when modesty is off the leash, ultimately drowning you and your project (or product, for I speak of ethical brands now as much as I speak of my blog) even before you had a chance of competing with those who are “loud”, “brazen”, hungry for fame and success.
Is it really modesty though? Or has modesty long spiralled into becoming fear of daring – and losing? Fear of judgement?
And isn’t it strange that I presented this simple truth to ethical brands so often and didn’t follow it myself? So absurd!
Now, do I really believe that promoting my “real content” makes it bad?
Not if I think about it.
Here’s BBC Sherlock’s Why can’t people think, spoken, as it’s spoken best, to your reflection in the mirror.
Do I really believe that beating the big drum for my blog to find more “wonderful readers who care” makes me bad?
Do I really believe that the alternative to blogging ethically is dog-eat-dog?
No, of course not!
A cause can’t be a hobby
It scares me to even type it here, but here’s the deal.
BEAUTYCALYPSE can’t, mustn’t remain a hobby for the sake of all the great green things and pioneers out there. As long as I care about this lifestyle and as long as I want to speak about it, it’s “Nath, the mic is yours” or “please shut up and leave”.
In fact, BEAUTYCALYPSE softly stopped being a hobby a while ago but I didn’t notice that she was itching to spread the wings. And her topics are too relevant to go unnoticed!
So another question I had to ask myself in the course of my reflections was this:
Do I believe that great green brands I meticulously cherry pick and present to the world deserve a big, relevant, shiny stage for all to see?
The birth of an ethical business
The ultimate goals of the “new” BEAUTYCALYPSE are slightly utopistic since it’s basically ethical and peaceful world domination 😉
BEAUTYCALYPSE aims to become THE independent resource for bull-free, fad-free, genuine information about truly ethical and healthy products and habits as well as the most genuine industry voices – in beauty, fashion, lifestyle, personal growth, fitness, cooking, travel, business and beyond to create a better world for as many people as we can! Connecting ethical consumers and ethical companies for a clearer understanding.
being featured on BEAUTYCALYPSE must become a recognised sign of approval for how far they are on their path to ethical excellence.
BEAUTYCALYPSE must stop being a hobby and become an important, a notable part of my career in time for the 4th blog birthday in March 2017.
“Don’t expect me to behave perfectly…”
It’s not an easy task to scale an ethical project.
And yet that’s exactly what I plan to do.
Naturally there will be a lot of mischief going on to make it possible (as well as smaller tweaks that you’ll see emerge during this week, and hey, did you see my new logo!?), ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages, come and see:
💚 Naughty BEAUTYCALYPSE books!
💚 Brazen Kindle book affiliate links!
💚 Wicked YouTube shows!
…They say that in a hero’s journey story everyone roots for the underdog.
Well, BEAUTYCALYPSE is just on her way to becoming a real hero after having been too shy to speak up. So be part of our quest – subscribe for post alerts, share with family and friends: Let’s shoot for the moon!