First off I am finally home safe and sound in New York! I recently took a 4 day trip to Exuma, Bahamas then went straight from there to The Catskills (photos in this post taken there at Scribner’s Lodge, more on that coming!). Today has been one of the most Mondayiest of all Mondays to say the least. I got extremely car sick on the way back in from the Catskills – which I guess happens when you aren’t used to sitting in the front seat of a vehicle for 2+ hours. NYC for you. lol. Then had a million things to catch up on! However I didn’t want the day to end without writing this blog post and having it go live for you all tonight. It is definitely one of the more personal pieces I have written.
As many of you know I took the leap from side hustle to full time job September 1st of this year. It has officially been 2 months of doing this full time! If you read my original post about going full time (LINKED HERE FOR REFERENCE) you may remember that I told my parents I was only going to do this for 2 months. LOL TO THAT COMMENT. One – time has passed so insanely quickly an two, I love this job and I have so much more that I want to do with it that expands just 2 months. Thinking back I had no idea what I was about to get myself into.
To put it simply this is hands down the hardest job I have ever had in my entire life. Plainly I was so ill prepared for this I got hit right in the god damn face with it. I don’t think anything could have prepared me for it. You may be thinking.. what is exactly is SO HARD about it?!?!? You are living the dream, read your first sentence Courtney you were just in the Bahamas. Well people sorry to burst your bubble but it is not as glamorous as it seems and I know that you all have heard that before. And trust me, I used to be one of those people that laughed when influencers/bloggers/content creators said that their lives weren’t glamorous. I mean I was doing it as a side hustle and thought hey this won’t be that tough. Well until you try you never can understand.
I have no coworkers, no intern, no manager, no personal photographer, it is just me. Everything I do, I do completely on my own or with the help of people that I pay or hire. If you remember the Bacardi Cocktail IG stories that I posted a week ago. That took me over 3 hours to film, edit, create, publish. People see things and automatically think that we just pull that all out of thin air. The mermaid costume I posted – that was an entire day of creating, planning, shooting, editing, publishing. And the worst part about it is, you can spend up to 24 hours on one piece of content and you have no idea if that is going to fail or succeed. So there is stress. So much stress and I didn’t know what stress was until I took this leap. I was ill prepared in that unknown. Everything is riding on your shoulders. When I worked for Macy’s if we had a bad day, I cared but at the end of the day I was getting paid no matter what, if I slacked off a little, I had coworkers to pick up the slack and I knew at 6pm I could leave and not have to think about it again until 9am the next day. Now I eat, sleep, breathe – Mimosas and Manhattan. I have to. This is my livelihood now. I am pushing myself harder than ever because if Mimosas and Manhattan fails, I fail. Same with every other blogger out there. It never ends and the pressure/stress is so unbelievable that the amount of respect I have for this industry has multiplied by 1000.
You always have to be ON and I mean ON. Smile on your face, net working, working a room, asking interesting questions, emailing politely, filming yourself for stories saying interesting things, writing, creating, seeking inspiration. There is no time to relax on say a vacation. You are constantly shooting and creating content, because if you don’t you best believe that new girl on the rise is. And she may just take that huge campaign from you. Which brings me to my next point – it is so extremely competitive you mentally have to be prepared or you will drive yourself down a dark hole that you won’t be able to pull yourself out of. When I was doing this part time and say a picture didn’t perform exactly the way I wanted to I would brush it off. I mean this wasn’t my full time job and I had that excuse. Now there are no excuses. If I am not creating high quality content every single time, then I need to reassess this career. So to the people that think we are just sitting around taking selfies, it is not. I have learned how tough minded and how in control of my mind I have become to make this successful because to me, I cannot let this or myself fail and that is the scariest part.
A few days ago while in the Bahamas this all really hit me, I think the reality of it all hit me. I started to doubt myself and go down that hole of what the hell am I doing. Right in the middle of this beautiful place (legit we were standing in the ocean watching the sun go down) – I lost it (Thank God for Lex of LexiconOfStyle) because I cried. A lot. I had to tell her that sometimes I don’t think I am good enough. I don’t think I am creative enough. I don’t think I am funny or talented enough. It has been really hard and I told her how unprepared I was. She said all of the right things back to me and for that I am so extremely lucky for a friend like her in this industry. Because the #1 thing I have learned in these 2 months is that without amazing friendships with people that get it. You will go insane.
I mentioned the other day as well to my sister, when I was trying to learn how to video edit (which took me a few hours) that I don’t think the public gets it. They don’t understand us and that was getting me extremely down. The unexplainable work of having to master so many different crafts as one person. Some days I would trade a desk job to this because of how tough this industry is. However I have found something within myself that I never knew existed before. This unbelievable passion from my gut that is lighting a fire in me. To grow and create and succeed no matter what. In the Bahamas I had a turning point where I want to put my absolute all into this and yes there will always be that fear of failing but at least I would be able to know I tried my hardest and found something I truly loved within the process.
I love creating, I love writing, I am starting to learn and love photography, I love meeting new people, I love making something out of nothing. Most importantly I love surprising myself. With passion comes great opportunities and within the next few months I plan to continue growing Mimosas and Manhattan and growing as a person, all while always always remaining true to myself. Cheers to 2 months. Cheers to everyone that took the time to read this.