Disclaimer: I’ve never published my rant posts on this blog before. Normally they find themselves in the trash pile after I’ve gotten everything I wanted to say off my mind, but for some reason this post was different.
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Since the beach, I’ve been listening to a ton of podcasts. (I shared some of my favorites in this blog post!) Most recently I listened to The Goal Digger podcast hosted by Jenna Kutcher. This podcast is about management & marketing, more specifically productivity tips, social media strategies, business hacks and inspirational stories. I listened to episode 158 in which Jenna sits down with artist and designer, Morgan Harper Nichols.
Morgan talks about something that really hit home for me; hiding behind a username. Morgan admitted that she struggled to put herself out there and found herself hiding behind her username and her blog. It took a lot of courage to stop hiding, but since that time, she’s found her engagement and reach has doubled.
This is a topic that always bothers me. I began my blog in 2011 while I was in middle school. I know I’ve mentioned this on the blog before, but I haven’t really gone in depth into why this blog is so important to me. In middle school, I felt like an outcast, unwanted. My parents pushed me to pursue my passions and start a blog after we went on a family vacation to Boston. I loved the idea of it, and my dad helped me set up my first blog on WordPress, Kid’s Perspectives. A few weeks later, I realized I wasn’t satisfied. I wanted more. I wanted to talk about fashion and share outfits, so What the Clique was born. Because I was struggling with such a terrible case of bullying in middle school, my self-esteem was at an all-time low. I didn’t want to share my articles with friends because I feared the teasing would get worse. A couple of my classmates caught wind of my blog, and it did just that, the bullying got worse. I even had to leave school for a short period of time to just get away from it, and I accompanied my mom on a long weekend to a family wedding.
Even in high school I still feared retribution and didn’t tell friends about my blog. Once again I was hiding behind my username. I was so scared of judgment from my peers. It wasn’t until college that I started to share my blog and my content with friends. The summer before my freshman year I was texting my future college roommate, Claire. She was one of my first friends who I was able to talk to about my blog without fear of being judged. She said she thought it was one of the coolest things and that she wishes she had one as well. Still, to this day, Claire takes pictures for my blog and is one of my biggest cheerleaders.
It wasn’t until this experience three years ago that I put myself out there and stopped fearing judgment. And yes, just like Morgan, my audience has doubled.
Which brings me to this. Thank you, guys. Thank you for coming along with me on this crazy blogging journey. I am so thankful for this outlet and strive to share only my authentic self; no gimmicks, no filters.