I started blogging in the heat of trying to build a NykiMakes from the ground up. Within all of this "#girlboss starting a business" business, I became enthralled with teachings from the world of self-help (I know, I know). Mainly, I wanted out of my 9-5 so I started consuming everything I could about building your sidehustle into your full-time job. I kept getting the message that if I grinded harder, and I thought smarter, and I schemed bigger, that somehow the abundance I searched for would find its way into me. The law of attraction. The only thing limiting me was my limited belief in myself. So I stuck with blogging because I thought that if I was vulnerable but also highlighting all the stuff I loved, that the stuff I loved would become a bigger part of my life, and ultimately, this business (which was a side-hustle) would grow into my only job. It would be so easy!
I have to admit that all went very well until I stopped blogging right after I made a "Part One," post. In that blog I talked about how I was proud of myself for sticking to blogging as a weekly ritual and promised a juicy follow up which I never delivered on. I bet the suspense is still killing you almost a year later.
In all seriousness though...look, blogging is hard! Sticking to something is hard! 2021 was HARD. When I stopped blogging, I was trying to figure out how to start taking control of my life. I felt stuck in a soul-sucking job I hated. I was trying to plan a wedding in the midst of a pandemic that thwarted planning about one thousand times. All I wanted to do all day was make stuff, rearrange my sweet house, and relish in the joy of living. But it's hard to relish in the joy of living when you can't find it, and when you have no time to. Blogging started to feel less like an exciting new venture and more like a chore. I felt like I was lying to everyone with light-hearted sentiments and gushy excitement for things that I really had no time to pursue.
On top of how bogged down I felt by worrying that I had somehow duped my 10 loyal follwers (love you, btw), I couldn't help but realize that I bit off WAY more than I could chew by going 0-100 with my business amidst a lot of other stuff I desperately needed to figure out. In the months after I started NykiMakes, I participated in my first market, made a TON of work, and took on six pretty demanding commissions during the season of my wedding, all while holding down my constantly changing 9-5 during a pandemic. I know I'm not alone in this, but I started running before I could walk. So what did I do? I got overwhelmed.
I sat on all my commissions through summer because thinking about the looming weight of pushing through all the noise to get something done kept giving me panic attacks. I wallowed in my stress, compulsively looking for a new job. I got married, which was a huge highlight, but also a massive undertaking. I continued complusively looking for a new job until I found one, at a school, one week before the school year began. I quit my other 9-5 (shoutout to all those who participated in the Great Resignation).
From here, I tried to rebuild slowly without knowing where to start. I took to gardening. I did a lot of hiking (something I've always loved to do), I started taking care of my body. My brain followed. Slowly but surely (and with so much less stress in my teaching job....yeah....less stress as a teacher, let that sink in), my will to accomplish business-related things came back. I started that slowly too, though. I started by apoogizing to the people whose commissions I never finished, and then I worked on them, and then I finished them. I decided to stop taking on new work as I settled into my new life as a teacher. I decided to stop pressuring myself into overwork and burn out.
I started openly thinking about the ways all of my patterns of overworking stem from my bluecollar, bootstraps upbringing, from my 2-5 jobs at a time in my early adulthood to make ends meet, from my billion side-gigs during college, from the capitalist hellhole I've grown up in, from the toxic positivity I've subscribed to in trying to find myself. My passion is what I've built this business on -- a passion for art, a passion for interior design, a passion for curiosity. I don't want growing a business to feel like overwork and burnout, so I've stopped looking at it as a way out and starting looking at it as a way to share my passions with the world.
So today, I start blogging again. I really liked blogging, but I was doing it inauthentically and for the wrong reasons. Since finding this post-chaos balance, I feel a desire to keep slowly taking things back on and for now, this is one of those things. Maybe my next blog will be a part two to the one I left you with.
Thanks for reading <3