Thursday, June 1, 2017

How do I Balance a Blog & Career?

I take pride in having a career and a blog.  
I currently work for the Boeing Company as a project manager/business analyst. I also blog in my free time. Emma’s Edition is a lifestyle blog dedicated to bringing you fashion, career, and life advice. Aside from school, relationships, and family, I’m constantly balancing my profession and my passions. 

Here are a few questions I’ve gotten about balancing a career and a blog:

 One question I get a lot...

How do I balance a blog and working full time?

1. I stay organize
This means I have a content calendar for my blog. I also have a separate calendar for work to keep my work stuff. As I work with brands and agree to partnerships, I fill out a monthly content calendar. And as I schedule work meetings and events, my work calendar also fills up. 

2. Define clear career and blogging goals
I’m constantly reflecting and asking myself what I want out of my work – both professionally and in my passions. I ask myself: how do I want to grow? How do I derive meaning out of these spaces in my life? How am I continuing to develop my business and creative skills?
I write monthly, quarterly and annual goals for all spaces in my life – especially in my career and for my blog.

3. Define where to spend my time
My career is important to me and it is also my main source of income. I spend at least 40% of my time working. Other than sleeping, eating, and working out, how I choose to spend of my days is up to me. 

I easily could spend the other 40-60% of my time blogging, but I want to accomplish other things in life – like spend time with my family, friends, and boyfriend. So I allocate blogging time to afternoons and a day on the weekends if I have a photo shoot. I’ve learned how to be more efficient with my time spent blogging. For instance, I’ve learned how to shoot 4 looks in one hour. So if I have two photo shoots in a month, I literally have 8 looks to publish on Emma’s Edition.

Has blogging ever affected me being considered for a job?

Believe it or not, blogging has always helped me in job interviews and landing jobs. Prospective employers have valued my blogging experience because I explicitly share the transferable skills I could bring to the role and organization.

For instance, I’ve shared with companies that I’ve interviewed with that blogging for the last 3 years has helped me become a better writer and effective communicator. I share how I’ve used writing to convey ideas, advice, and new perspectives. 

Advice: If you are wanting to start a blog/already blogging and are looking for a job, don’t be afraid to use your blog as relevant experience. My blog is on my resume and on my LinkedIn. I would recommend you pull specific examples of how blogging has developed your skills or has helped you prepare for the role you are applying for.

Has blogging ever taken a backseat as I’ve tried to build a career?

YES. My first two years out of college were incredible challenging to balance a blog and a career. After I graduated from college, I moved down to California to work as a Sales Representative for PepsiCo. Then after PepsiCo, I completed two 6 month rotations in finance for the Boeing Company. All three roles had incredibly steep learning curves. When my roles became more demanding at work, I had less energy and time to put effort into Emma’s Edition. 

But as I've experienced that the more I learn how to manage my work statement, the more time and energy I have to put into blogging. I finally feel like I'm getting the hang of balancing both worlds.
Advice: If you’re afraid of this happening, remember that everyone makes their way down the learning curve. Once you get a handle of your role and learn how to be more efficient in it, your job should require less energy. Here are 4 Tips to Help You Come Down the Learning Curve if you're about to start a new role.

What pieces of advice do I have for balancing a blog and career?

1. Be patient with Yourself in Both Spaces
A career and a blog take time to build. You can’t expect to gain 10,000 followers overnight and you also can’t expect to land your dream job your first job out of college. There is no race or right way to climb the corporate ladder or become a successful blogger.

2. Understand Your Capacity
It is not realistic to spend 40-50 hours a week at work and expect to also spend another 40 hours of blogging. As fun as partnerships and collaborations are, you have to be mindful of your time. Overcommitting to brand collaborations while having a busy work schedule may overwhelm and exhaust you.

3. Both Your Career & Blogging Should Be Fun
You should not wake up every day and hate your job. Blogging should also not feel like something you have to do. You have to keep both these spaces fun by understanding how you benefit from them.
For example: One thing that’s very important for me in my life is the opportunity to constantly be learning. I didn’t study aerospace in school or engineering, so at Boeing I’m constantly learning.
A few other things in my life that are important are writing and fashion. I’ve always loved both these things and blogging allows me to express these passions.

I hope you enjoyed reading about how I balance blogging and working full time! Please let me know if you have any questions related to the topic!

Thank you also to Jaleh Clothing for the Mia Peplum Gold Top and the Debi Vegan Leather Jacket! All of Jaleh’s products are made in the USA. You can check out Jaleh’s site here.

Photos: Holly Phan


  1. I love this advice! I'm currently in grad school and I experienced the struggle of balancing being a full-time student and a blogger. It is so hard and it can be so easy to get behind. (I've learned that time management is incredibly important!) However, you know you're doing something right when you always come back to your passions. Needless to say, I figured out how to properly balance blogging and school (at least for now!).