Why I am giving up Beauty Blogging

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There are an estimated 31 million bloggers in the world; full time professionals, entrepreneurs, hobbyists and part time professionals. However, only 2% of this group are successfully monetizing their sites, and while I am an engineer it doesn’t take a genius to conclude that the probability of success in this industry is pretty dismal. And while I never created a blog with the intention of making money or to take on blogging full time it is still disheartening to see the current state of the saturated blogging market.

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I am an amateur blogger, attempting to share my views, tips and tricks on all things beauty related and when I created the blog in 2015 it was still a relatively new concept. Fast forward to January 2017 and the blogging boom is well and truly upon us, and I feel like there’s a change to come, 2016 came with the end of the term “blogger”, with those with blogs referring to themselves as influencers rather than bloggers, but how can you have a blog without a blogger? Short answer being, you can’t!

Scanning through my Instagram I struggle to find a fresh, original post- everyone is either copying each other or simply stealing posts with no credit acknowledged. There are too many beauty bloggers and not enough new content, there isn’t enough products and cosmetics in the world for a new aspect.

Growth and reach is no longer down to talent or aesthetically pleasing photos and content, but rather money and Facebook ad subscriptions. I am currently studying an MSc in Business and Marketing, where I am learning about digital sales and marketing and I apply the knowledge to my blog in the desperate attempt to reinvigorate its presence only to see a minimal reach and a steady decline in followers. It’s now rigged to suit those with big pockets and large endorsements.

In the last week I have seen two highly influential, and in my opinion, hugely successful bloggers simply leave the industry, and while perhaps it could be down to unrelated issues, I am concerned that the integrity of bloggers will only be questioned more and more and beauty blogging will die as a result.

There is a discontinuity coming to the market and I am branching out as a result, I don’t want to have to steal ideas from other bloggers who work incredibly hard to create content, or simply be one more Facebook page blagging about the same makeup range. It isn’t fair on the other bloggers, instead I want to reach out to a previously untouched customer- I want to be proactive and disrupt the market, and to do that I am putting an end to my beauty blog once and for all!

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A is for Anxiety

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This isn’t a normal post for me, and if you’re looking for something makeup or beauty related, look away now, those posts are coming but this isn’t one of them, this one is about anxiety.

I have been totally non existent on my page lately, why? Because I lost interest in it, well to be honest I lost interest in everything. Now I am one of those people that’s always on the go, working and college, I try to keep up with everything I hardly let myself breathe, I keep myself busy so I never have to deal with things, I just keep going I don’t know how to slow down!

I am a very strong person and I’d never be one to wallow,I just put it in a mental box and get on with my life. However, about 8 weeks, when all the exams were finished, when the Christmas rush had settled down and my college month off was set to begin I fell down the stairs. I don’t exactly remember what happened, I think it was caused by total exhaustion, or my body just had enough of me putting it under pressure, all I can remember is the excruciating pain through my left leg and an insanely swollen ankle. Next thing I know a pair of crutches were going to be my new fashion statement for the next month, my ankle was fractured.

Now I’m not wallowing, I promise, people have it so much worse, and I could have hurt myself a lot more, but suddenly all my independence was gone. I couldn’t manage the crutches, it took me ages to get up and down to the toilet, I couldn’t wash my hair or stand up in shower because I wasn’t allowed get my cast wet, I couldn’t even make myself a cup of tea. I felt totally useless.

Anxiety Quote

With the weather being wet or icy outside, I found it physically difficult to leave the house, with my leg so I ended up spending hours to myself watching TV and Netflix, I had too much time on my hands, lots of time to think, the problem being you can’t stop your thoughts, you can’t escape your own brain.

The anxiety pretty much started with insomnia, I couldn’t sleep or if I did I had nightmares, awfully vivid hallucination type dreams, they were horrifying!

It got to a point where I was afraid to go to sleep because I didn’t know where my mind would wander to, so I had to sleep with Netflix blaring in the background to drown out my own mind, I was exhausted, but it was the darkness and the quietness in my room I couldn’t cope with, it was like I was totally isolated, like I was being swallowed up.

I began to lose interest in everything, I got up because my mom would come check on me, and I ate because she made me my meals, but I didn’t have any interest. I felt if I could just hide out under my duvet, the world would forget all about me and I’d be okay. I was lifeless, energy-less.

Suddenly I was panicky in every situation, I remember being brought to town the week before my birthday and crying in Debenhams, because of the volume of people around me, I was constantly paranoid, I was constantly worried and afraid, like these people were looking at me and judging me, it sounds totally crazy but it was overwhelming and I couldn’t stop the thoughts, I couldn’t shut off my brain. I felt like a weak weepy version of my former self, it was crippling.

Even though the cast went and I was more mobile in the walking boot for my leg, the feeling didn’t alter, I didn’t feel anything either way. I was becoming totally numb to everything even though I was crying all the time. I was out of it, like someone on mind numbing medication, I couldn’t concentrate or even think straight, if I tried to it over whelmed me. It started to get to a stage where my own mother had to remind me to shower, but then I’d snap if she suggested wearing makeup or doing my hair. I NEVER don’t wear makeup!! It’s my thing and I had lost total interest in it. I was lost.

I felt really guilty for being like I was, which added to the anxiety, there is so much in the media about suffering from depression and anxiety I didn’t want to sound like I was jumping on this trendy new bandwagon, but I felt like my insides were tearing themselves apart. I eventually told my mom, now my mom is like me, unless you’re physically sick or something, you tell yourself you’re grand and you keep going. But I just couldn’t anymore.

Now, because we are really close she had noticed the changes in my behavior, but finally voicing what was going on in my head was like lifting a weight off my shoulders, when someone just listened and didn’t look at like I was crazy I felt better.

This too shall pass

Now I’m trying to deal with this naturally through the help of little things everyday like making myself relax or just taking time to myself. I’m really finding talking to your friends about nothing serious and having a laugh really helps, or going for long walks.

I still get nightmares every so often, but it’s getting better, I make little lists everyday and tick them off, so my brain kinda thinks I’ve accomplished something today and therefore not useless, if that makes sense? That makes me sleep a whole lot better!

I’m getting better week by week with dealing with the anxiety attacks and even though I have mini “freakouts” when I’m in college or out shopping but I’m learning to ground yourself.

I know some of you may not have any interest in this type of post, but I know as a young person there is so much we have to deal with and it is so easy to suffer from anxiety, so I just wanted to let people know that I’ve been where you may be and that there is nothing wrong with asking for help! Talk to people, let them know how you feel, don’t feel guilty or embarrassed because its okay not to be okay.

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I was also planning on doing a post on my favourite ways to de-stress and unwind, which I feel helps me out immensely with my calming myself down, please let me know if you guys would be interested in something like that!

Until next time lovelies,

Barbara xxx