I'm Rachel, a twenty-something living in the mountains of Colorado. I love being outside, eating good food, and learning how to live more naturally. I'm currently healing from Lyme's Disease and sleeping a lot, but in my free time I learn, write, and blog. One of my favorite things to do is hang out with my hubby.
How long have you been blogging? And what type of blog do you have?
I've had a live site since mid-May, but I've been researching, writing, and learning about blogging since January.
My blog HopefulHolistic.com is all about natural health and wellness, and simple solutions for living in a way that leads to a thriving body, mind, and soul. It's about empowerment and finding the root cause of disease, instead of taking a pill to treat a symptom.
What made you decide to start a blog?
I was jobless and living in Mexico on a non-profit trip with my husband, thinking about what I wanted to do for a career when we returned to the United States. I had just left an absolutely toxic job (finally!) and I knew exactly what I didn't want in a job.
In December 2017 I wrote out a mind-map of all the things I love to do, and the jobs that could allow me to do them. At the top of my list was helping people, living naturally, and eating well. I slowly came to the realization that blogging could be a way to merge every one of my passions and talents!
I love helping people, and I've never wanted to prioritize money above people in my work. I enjoy graphic design and learning about things that help us live better and less wastefully. I'm also better at getting my thoughts across using writing rather than speaking. And along with that, I'm a huge introvert, so working from home seemed wonderful. I also wanted a way to make some money on the side while being a stay-at-home mom (someday!).
Do you have a routine that helps you stay on track and be productive?
I don't have a strict schedule throughout the day, and maybe I should.... But I always try to wake up well. My mornings set the tone for the rest of the day. I try to stay away from my phone, and do some stretching and yoga and drink lots of water with lime to start detoxing my body. While I'm doing this I think about what I want to get done that day- although I'm not super tough on myself if I'm not as productive as I'd like.
Each day is a new day with new possibilities, and it's all about the little steps in the right direction! Keeping a calendar helps too, and check-marks make me feel good about getting stuff done. Remember that you're the boss and you gotta get yourself to show up to work, and work hard, to see fruit!
Have you ever experienced a creative rut and how did you get out of it?
Oh gosh. Yes. Reading can help me get some creativity back- part of that might just be because I'm not staring at a screen. And over time I've learned that there's a difference between when I need to step away from the computer, or when I just need to get my butt into gear and write something, even if it sounds terrible.
Don't burn yourself out trying to do blog work for hours on end. Self-care is important- take care of yourself so that you can do better work later on!
Rachel's tips for people who want to start blogging
Blogging is super cheap to begin doing.
There's really nothing to lose. No need to quit your job or anything right now- just jump in and see how it goes!
Find people who will encourage you and believe in you too.
Bloggers that inspire Rachel
Adrienne from Whole New Mom
Carly from Mommy on Purpose
Scrivs from Billionaire Blog Club
What has been one of the most challenging moments in your blogging journey so far?
Overall, I think that coming to the realization that blogging is a slow game, was a hard pill to swallow. There are no quick fixes and it takes time to make money. Before starting, I was sure I'd be making a decent amount of money in no time (for silly reasons, like having fewer typos than someone who said they were struggling with monetization) but it just takes time no matter who you are.
Be patient and give yourself time to find your voice, grow traffic, and make a buck or two!
With the rise of "Influencer" Marketing, how can bloggers stay true to their creative voice and individuality while still promoting valuable content for their audiences?
First realize that people can smell insincerity. In the long run, I believe you'll make more money if you refuse to promote products you can't really get behind. Infuse your content and promotions with passion and it will attract like-minded people who would love to buy the great things you sell!
How can a new blogger find support from peers in the community?
Facebook groups. They're free and have given me more support and help than some groups people pay for! Don't rely on personal friends and family, because they won't always be understanding. Blogging is tough and there's definitely a learning curve, so find groups of bloggers in your niche on Facebook and jump in with them! You'll probably make a few new friends while you're at it.