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But this wasn’t a cinema-screen worthy, burn-all-my-bridges, fuck-you kind of resignation - in fact, the whole exchange was so nice and supportive that there has to be some kind of human resources award on its way in the post.
Nonetheless, I finally did it. After blogging for over four years, I finally quit my job and took the decision to make this my full-time career. I made the transition at the start of the month and I’m now just over three weeks into truly self-employed life, and as a few of you have asked me how I knew it was the right time to take the plunge and how I feel now, I thought I’d reflect over the build up to my resignation and what personal and financial situation I was in at the time.
It goes without saying that everybody’s situation is different. I know of bloggers that have worked their way up from nothing so they could channel all of their energy into their content, and I know of bloggers who are extremely successful but still working part or full-time, either because they like the financial security or, actually, blogging isn’t their career priority. Each individual falls somewhere on the spectrum depending on their preferences, goals and current situation, so the timing of one person deciding to go full-time is often not likely to suit another. For example, going full-time when you live with your parents and don’t have larger rent or mortgage obligations is easier than doing so when you have a family home to run.
With that being said, here’s where I was at.
So, the big one: the financial side of things. Since January, I had cut down to working the part-time hours of two days a week; this acted as my security blanket, but I was only taking home about £550 a month from this so, by far, it was not enough to cover my rent and bills. When I started to seriously consider quitting my job, I had to factor in that I was going to be 8 days richer but five hundred odd quid poorer, and how I was going to either recuperate that loss in the meantime, or find a way to live without it.
For me, the crux was identifying the value of my time. I was spending 64 hours a month in the office, but if I were to spend those 64 hours creating content, I’d not only be earning more money, I’d be building my career and indulging my passion all at the same time.
And that content needn’t all be sponsored; taking the time to create more content (whether those are blog posts, YouTube videos or even Insta Stories) means that there is more for people to read, which in turn makes you guys want to come back or engage more and builds my platform for even better opportunities. So as well as a financial decision, understanding the value of my time was also a very important business decision for the growth of my career.
But back to the financial nitty gritty of things, I was getting regular enough work for a healthy enough fee to cover my rent and bills, plus a little extra to still enjoy my life. If you’re wondering ‘well ffs how much exactly is that?’, my bills equate to about £950-£1000 a month, and that includes rent, utilities, my phone, laptop, insurance, contact lenses and various bits and bobs like Photoshop and Netflix.
Realistically, I was going to need at least £1400 a month to ensure my financial obligations were met and that I was also able to buy my regular and expensive coffees. After about 6 months of consistently covering these costs, I felt I was financially comfortable enough to support myself without too much stress.
The financial side of things is most important in the practical sense, but being in the right personal space is also crucial. Keiran and I moved into our first rented home a few months ago and so I finally felt I had a proper base for creating YouTube videos and an actual home office whereby I could dedicate myself to my business without interruption. Simple things like taking a nice bed picture became instantly easier because I was able to create the exact aesthetic I wanted, and so I felt able to expand and improve in a way I hadn’t before.
More than that, I found myself heading into my part-time role thinking about all of the things I could have been doing blog-wise. My heart wasn’t in it anymore, and I’d reached this crossroads of needing to dedicate more time and attention to my content or otherwise accepting that I’d plateaued, and consequent growth would become more and more difficult.
The idea of quitting my job had been playing on my mind few a few weeks before I actually took the plunge, and when I did make the decision, it was like a switch went off in my head and I just knew. I told my boss the next day. That’s not to say I wasn’t terrified of making a huge mistake when I did, but my gut feeling was that this was the right moment, and the right thing to do.
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The first week was an emotional rollercoaster. I had real highs whereby I felt I’d made the best decision of my life and everything seemed to be going to plan, and, on the flip side, I had the real lows of money worries and actually, will I ever be able to get a mortgage and fuck, fuck, fuck, why have I done this?
These ups and downs settled after a week or so and I feel like I’ve now maneuvered myself into the best routine possible. I wake up at 6:45am, make a cup of tea, say hello on Insta Stories and then go about my day. Whether I’m editing, writing, doing admin or just trying to keep the house looking decent for adhoc social posts, I always make sure to never sleep in and get out to work in coffee shops as much as possible (this is v. expensive but sometimes you just gotta have that human interaction, you know? The cliché is real.).
And, honestly, now, I’m so glad I finally took the leap. I love being self-employed and being the boss of my own time, money and schedule, and I’m proud of myself for taking that risk and dedicating my all to making a shit hot career out of blogging.
Now let’s just see where it takes me. *all fingers and toes should now be crossed pls!*