Welcome to my lifestyle blog – eleanorbarkes.com! After years in the making, it’s finally here. Or rather, after years of being in my head, it’s finally a reality. Many of you have supported Eleanor J’adore, my previous natural hair blog, for a long time and I’m so grateful for that. However, I believe that my content needs to reflect all the aspects of my life that I’m passionate about, and if you’ve been following me on social media I’m sure you would have picked up on that in any case, that my interests stretch far beyond natural hair.
So with this being my first post I’m excited to share why I’ve started a lifestyle blog and what content you can look forward to, as well as why you should start a blog if you’ve been contemplating it for ages, but for some reason never got going with it. Regarding my content, I’ll be sharing a lot more of my personal style and be giving some styling tips (and no I’m no expert), along with what I love in the world of beauty. You’ll be delighted to know that my natural hair content is not going anywhere – I’m just making room for other interests in my life. I’ll also be sharing more of my motherhood journey along with everything associated with it. And lastly, since one of the questions I do receive very often is about blogging, I’ll be sharing my blogging advice as well.
My goal is very simple: to inspire women from all walks of life, meaning YOU, to live a life you truly love through sharing my story. So without further ado, here are 6 reasons why I’ve started a lifestyle blog and why should consider starting one too.
1. I GENUINELY WANT TO HELP YOU
The reason I started blogging back in 2014 was to help you. At the time it was all about natural hair and how to get healthy curls back. I did it (fairly) consistently for years and the feedback has been amazing. I’ve received messages from women the world over thanking me for my advice, telling me how much I’ve helped them by sharing my natural hair journey. That hasn’t changed. I still want to continue helping you, but by sharing other areas of my life too.
Imagine getting similar feedback from others, simply by sharing your story. I think that’s pretty powerful and a wonderful way of reaching out to women in a similar position to you.
2. I WANT TO CREATE A SOLID COMMUNITY
Yes, I already have an existing community. And some of you are hard-core fans who follow my every single move. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you. Some of you have been there from the very beginning, when I shared my very first natural hair blog post in 2014, and all the way through to my wedding and giving birth to both my sons!
So I understand that many of you are interested in topics other than hair and I want us to be able to have open and honest conversations about issues that affect us as women. I want you to feel welcome here and for us to start discussions about things that really matter.
And if having your own tribe where you can achieve something similar is important to you I encourage you to start a blog of your own.
3. I LOVE CREATING CONTENT
Guys, I love creating content, as in I genuinely L.O.V.E. it. There’s no other way to put it: writing and editing blog posts, taking and editing photos, filming and editing videos, the whole lot. I get a natural high from creating something out of nothing and putting it out for the world to see. Before the days of social media, I used to write for myself and for my day job, but with the advent of platforms such as blogs, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, it’s all about putting it out there for the world to see. I can easily work on a one-minute Instagram video for hours, painstakingly making sure that I edit the visual exactly to the beat of the music. And maybe it has a bit to do with soothing my own ego, but I get such a kick every time I receive positive feedback from you telling me how much you love a particular piece of content. Creating content has also afforded me so many amazing opportunities, to the point where I earn a living from it now.
If you naturally enjoy creating content, then you should really consider taking advantage of all the free platforms we have at our disposal. As long as you love doing the initial hard work, the potential opportunities that exist are out of this world.
4. I WANT TO LEARN NEW SKILLS AND IMPROVE MY EXISTING ONES
Let me share something with you. The last time I was formally employed in my field of study was in Cape Town, December 2012. That’s the last time I worked in Public Relations (PR) and Publicity where I was paid to write press releases, pitch news stories to journalists and organise media events – daily. I loved this fast-paced industry! In January 2013 I moved to Japan and started working as a kindergarten teacher. Even though I really enjoyed being a teacher, I missed the extreme creativity that was needed as a PR professional. So looking back I suppose starting a blog was a natural step to take in order to have a creative outlet. And along with that progression, the step that followed was always wanting to do better in my newfound blogging gig.
So not only did I want to continue to improve my writing skills, but I also wanted to learn how to take better photos and how to film and edit videos. With the exception of writing, these are all skills I learnt after I started blogging.
Don’t think that just because you haven’t formally studied towards a profession or aren’t in formal employment that it’s impossible to learn anything new. If you have a desire to learn, a desire to acquire new skills, you can do it. There are many resources available in the “real” and online world, both free and paid, that you can use to improve your skills. And using it to your advantage on a blog might be the perfect place to put those skills to good use.
5. I LOVE BEING MY OWN BOSS
Need I say any more? I don’t have to answer to anyone else, except myself. And I have full control over the direction of a project. I decide how much, or how little effort I want to put into something. Most of the time it doesn’t even feel like work because I’m putting energy into something I’m really passionate about. And out of all the jobs I’ve ever had, this is the most rewarding one because it’s all down to me.
Your blog, your rules – #bossgirl
6. IT’S SO MUCH FUN
Because I’m working on something I love, I get to connect with and meet like-minded people from all over the world, and learn even more about the topics that I’m interested in. Add to that some of the exciting opportunities that can come along with it, I’d say it’s a no-brainer: go ahead and start your blog already.
Outfit Details: T-shirt – New Look; Skirt – Topshop; Platform Sandals – New Look; Bag – Primark; Earrings – New Look
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Hair Extensions: To All My Black Girls – Use Discount Code “Eleanor10” for a saving should you purchase your own extensions.
So there you have it: why I started a lifestyle blog and why you should too. If you enjoyed any aspect of this post, I’d appreciate it if you could let me know your thoughts by leaving a comment, or share it by using any of the social media icons below. I have a mailing list as well so if you’d like to be one of the first in the know about anything new around here, do enter your email address.
Photography by Anna Felicia Photography