Just under a year ago, I embarked on the journey that I believed would lead me to career success- I started a blog. Although it had occurred to me before, the idea of putting myself out on a line to people I barely know was terrifying… until a friend pointed out that I had, pretty much, been doing that for years anyway on Twitter.
The blog was a starting point for building on a personal interest that I’d always had an interest in, but never had the required balls to write about. That subject was fashion, and the backlash I received from people was astounding.
‘You? Fashion? What, did you bump into Coco Chanel and have a revelation?’
‘But, you’re a goth, right?’
‘Well, I don’t want to be mean, but you’re not exactly “thin” are you?’
That last one was the clincher. I was determined to prove them wrong. You don’t need to be a so-called ‘stick’ to enjoy and revel in fashion. It’s styling to your shape that’s half the fun! But it was upon researching starting a blog that opened my eyes to the saturated market. Everyone has a blog these days. Everyone. But should that stop you from starting your own?
Well, of course not. I don’t expect my blog to hit national fashion headlines or have people taking pictures of me whilst walking down the street. I don’t even expect kind words in the comment boxes after my blog posts. If anything, it gives me a thicker skin and a talking point for when it comes to an interview situation. Not only that, it gives me somewhere to practice writing, photography and gain the ever-necessary HTML, CSS and SEO capability that is coveted in the current jobs market.
For some, it’s a good opportunity to monetise and get a bit back from writing thousands of words every week. For others it’s about getting writing experience. But the main thing to take away from blogging is that you get out what you put in. Want to get into photography? Set up your own shoots and put them on your blog. Want to get into archaeology? Visit historical exhibits and review them.
Likewise, it will bring you to life on paper for a potential employer. By having strong interests it makes you a person, not just a 2:1 degree and a part time job in Starbucks (if you’re even that lucky!). It’s that ‘get up and go’ attitude that employers love and by doing something that isn’t your degree (or making your 11th Mocha Frappuccino in one afternoon), it proves that you’re ready to go that extra mile to get noticed.
So what are you waiting for?
Thanks to Jonas Löwgren for the image.