2016 Blogging Goals

Last year I tried setting monthly blogging goals but I quickly realised that wasn’t a constructive way to do it. This was firstly because I struggled to pluck figures to aim towards without having a long enough time period to look at my growth average but also because I got so worked up having not achieved these goals by the end of the month. It boiled down to the monthly goals simply not being realistically achievable.

Seeing as it’s now January of the New Year, I thought I’d set myself some blogging goals that are more long term and less statistically fixed so that I can actually tick them off without stressing! I’ll probably review them halfway through the year and just before the end of the year.

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Stats

  • Get to 500 Bloglovin’ followers, 5000 Twitter followers and at least double my Instagram and Pinterest following
  • Maintain a steady average monthly view count
  • Publish three posts per week – IN PROGRESS!

 

Admin

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Content

  • Stick to a posting schedule– IN PROGRESS!
  • Get a new header designed by my fab blogger friend Kathy – COMPLETE!
  • Take more good quality blog photographs – IN PROGRESS!
  • Get vlogging!

 

Personal

 

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Do you have blogging or more general goals for 2016?
Did you meet your goals in 2015? 

Let me know and leave me links in the comments below.

Jenna
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Keep up to date with my latest posts on:
| Bloglovin’ | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Google+

If you liked this post, you should check out:
august blogging goals  //september blogging goals
september blogging goals: did I do it? – I review my monthly goal progress…

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Why I’ve Been Invisible On Social Media This Christmas

(I’d like to stress that I am not begrudging anyone who did schedule posts/tweets or share pictures/videos of them or their loved ones over the holidays.

That is completely your choice and if it’s what’s right for you then that’s perfectly fine.

This is not an attack piece!)

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As 2015 ends I think it’s safe to say that this year my blogging skills have vastly improved. I have taught myself basic Photoshop and video editing techniques, I am now the proud owner of a decent camera (thanks Josh!) and I have learnt a hell of a lot about social media marketing and personal relations from some other fantastic bloggers and web types.

Upon reflection, I also noticed that in 2015, I spent a ridiculous amount of time ensuring that I had a presence online. I joke about it with my friends and family but I am always trying to make sure that I am posting statuses, photos, check-in’s, pins… I am trawling through hashtags and chats trying to follow and find followers relevant to my blog’s ‘brand’ – the lovely Antoinette has a great video elaborating on whatever the hell that is?! … I would schedule posts to try and free up my day or if I knew was busy that day, only to then realise that those posts would still need sharing, promoting or responding to…

Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love blogging and writing online. I love the community of kind and supportive people that I have met through doing such things. I am inspired of and in awe of so many great people that I follow daily and I’m always interested in what they’ve been up to or how they’re feeling… It’s just that at some point, without realising it, I had made social media a necessity, rather than a tool. I’m more than aware of how a great online presence is essential to these kinds of things and I’m not swearing off it completely but there are people out there who do and that’s okay too.

 

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What I guess it comes down to is that I simply decided that over the Christmas period, I would make my physical presence my priority and not my social media oneAfter all, who could be staring at their Twitter feed when there’s beautiful, magical moments that might get missed, like my niece Ofelia smiling?

Not me.

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That being said, I’m now working on a couple of posts with pictures and videos of what me and family did so there is more smiley Fee to come! This is partly because it’s nice to go back through the photos and footage and remember the fun, but also because I want other family members and friends who I couldn’t see for whatever reason to be able to see what went on.

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This is why as I said earlier, I don’t begrudge anyone who did post over the holidays. Whether you did so to keep in touch with other loved ones or to preserve some special moments, or simply because you’re super-organised and scheduled a bunch of content, that’s awesome and you shouldn’t ever feel guilty for any of that. I was (virtually) invisible on social media over the holidays because I had spent most of the year feeling guilty for not being online enough! I now see that wasn’t necessary and in the New Year, I’ll be making sure that I make the moments matter instead.

 

Have you ever taken a break from blogging/social media?
Did you post over the holidays?

Let me know and leave me links in the comments below.

Jenna
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Keep up to date with my latest posts on:
| Bloglovin’ | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Google+

If you liked this post, you should check out:


why selfies are inherently feminist – how posting a selfie is really about self-love and that’s okay!

Fear of Missing Out: why your feed is making you miserable – a piece I wrote for Zusterschap about social media making us want more

september blogging goals: did I do it?

So I’ve been setting myself blogging goals since August and while the first month was really productive, September has dwindled a bit. I’m not going to be too hard on myself about it though. What with starting back at uni and my birthday party plans, I just haven’t been as active online as I usually am or would have liked to have been.

Nonetheless, let’s have a look at what my goals for last month were and if I was close to meeting them…

#1// Reach 750+ Twitter Followers

Status on 1st October – 705 Followers

This one is down to me not scheduling tweets as frequently and missing out on chatting opportunities, but I wasn’t too far off so I am going to keep setting realistic Twitter goals in the future!

#2// Reach 250+ Bloglovin’ Followers

Status on 1st October – only 120 followers!

This one is proving tough. Despite sharing my Bloglovin link in comments and on social media, it seems that gaining followers through there will be at a much slower pace than any other site.
Do any of you who use Bloglovin have any tips on gaining a wider following?

#3// Hit 500+ Page Views

Status on 1st October – a dismal 278 views

I set this one because in the past few months I’ve been hitting pretty close to 500 views and I thought that September might just be the one to creep up to it. Less frequent posting has meant however that I didn’t get anywhere near there.
At least I’m honest though, right guys?

#4// Contribute to a Blog (again)

Status – ACHIEVED!

 

My post all about pansexual/queer erasure appeared on Zusterschap on 23rd September. I know I do go on about them but I do love their site, the content and all the great contributors on there.

I’m not getting too disheartened about what I didn’t reach because I’m aware that I’ve had a really busy month and have neglected the blog slightly. What I am taking from this is that this month needs a bit more planning with regards to posts and social media presence but hopefully I’m now back into a routine and these numbers will fly back up before you know it.

I am conjuring up some ideas for some pieces but if you would like to work with me, you can email me at jennalouiselloyd27@gmail.com or send me a message via any of the social media sites in the sidebar.

Do you have monthly or yearly blogging goals?

Do you find them useful?

Let me know and leave me your links in the comments below!

Jenna

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Keep up to date with my latest posts on:
| Bloglovin’ | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Google+ |

 

inspiring women you should be following: part one

If your dream career lies somewhere in the midst of writing, ranting and promoting social justice as mine does then look no further than this new series of posts. I will be picking some of my favourite inspirational women each month, writing about what they do and where to follow them.

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A post shared by Emerald Pellot (@emeraldgritty) on

Emerald Pellot (@EmeraldGritty)

Emerald is a pop culture writer at LittleThings and the Former Senior Editor of CollegeCandy. Her work has featured in many publications and gives a particularly feminist view of the world of celebrity. Amongst some light-hearted fashion and beauty posts, Emerald has written some deeper and more provocative work discussing race and gender.  Her portfolio can be found here.

Mara Wilson (@MaraWritesStuff)

You may remember Mara Wilson for her childhood roles as Matilda, Natalie (Mrs Doubtfire) and Susan (Miracle on 34th Street). Now a grown woman, Mara writes plays, stories and blogs as well as working a day job at non profit company, Publicolor. In 2014, she produced a stage show called ‘What Are You Afraid Of?’ which focused on helping combat fear and anxiety using resources and expert advice. Her very popular Twitter account is a daily dose of feel-good and feisty soundbites. Oh, and she got in some serious beef with E.L. James (the author of Fifty Shades of Grey) but I’ll let you read up on that here.

Tatyana Fazlalizadeh (@fazlalizadeh)

An oil painter and illustrator from Brookyln, Tatyana is the creator of a great public art project with an important message about gender-based street harassment, titled Stop Telling Women To Smile. With many women participating, Tatyana has taken STWTS travelling and is working on pieces in numerous cities. Other renowned works of hers include her Mike Brown poster and The Roots Mural in Philadelphia. For her portfolio and more of her other works, visit her personal site.

The theme is "rock n roll glamour"…I accidentally came as a rock n roll spanner

A post shared by Alix Fox (@alixfox) on

Alix Fox (@AlixFox)

A major content warning for nearly everything this lady does as being incredibly Not Safe For Work. Formerly a Front Section Editor at Bizarre magazine, the wonderfully zany Alix is a London journalist, presenter and Durex UK sex educator who writes all sorts about relationships from the PG to the X-rated. Her work has featured in the Telegraph, Men’s Fitness and Comedy Central, she has compered for events like Sexhibition and Club Antichrist and she has a way with words like no other. She’s also lovely in person!

Mikki Kendall (@Karnythia)

Mikki is an intersectional feminist and opinion writer. She is one of the editors at hoodfeminism and writes some fiction on the side with a focus on diversity and representation, including a one shot comic in the Swords of Sorrow universe called ‘Miss Fury and Lady Rawhide’. Her Twitter is a place where many a debate take place. In 2013, she launched the hashtag  #Solidarityisforwhitewomen with the intention of highlighting how race is often dismissed as ‘not a feminist issue’. This then blew up and become a very controversial topic. You dont have to love Mikki’s style of writing but you will definitely learn something reading it.

Who are your inspirations?

Have you read any of these women’s work before?

Let me know in the comments below!

Jenna

x

Keep up to date with my latest posts on:
| Bloglovin’ | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Google+ |

If you liked this post, you should check out:
why selfies are inherently feminist – a post about your profile pics and your self love
the empowerment playlists – a series of feel-good playlists
you just keep doing other people – a sex-positive rant from Cami

why selfies are inherently feminist

Content Warnings for: online abuse, threatening behaviour, body shaming, discussion of weight

Lindsay Bottos, ‘Anonymous’ (2014)

Modern feminism has placed great emphasis not only on the importance of self-love with tags like #bodyposi and #blackout trending every day, but on giving marginalised individuals a spotlight from which to shine and speak out about their experiences.

Unfortunately. despite the rise in these feminist attitudes, as Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie says in her TEDx talk ‘We Should All Be Feminists’, girls still :

… see each other as competitors —

not for jobs or for accomplishments,

which I think can be a good thing,

but for the attention of men.”

Young girls and boys are introduced to certain negative practices very early on in their adolescence. Concepts like ‘bitching’, ‘who wore it best?’ and even sex-shaming are rife among many different media, the majority of which focus on a woman’s appearance or behaviour. Studies have shown that young girls are severely affected by the media’s portrayal of beauty ‘ideals’. Sadly, their self-esteem is also all too often damaged by women much closer to home. If peers and relatives hold just as much prejudice and even engage in such bullying because of it, then they are no better than an oppressor. When children view these women of authority in their lives commenting on other women’s appearances or behaviours, they believe that these practices are right and will emulate this negativity.

In the digital age, so much of what we do and who we are can feel validated by the amount of likes or comments it gains. The way to break the chain of perpetuating insecurities is  therefore by doing something simple, beautiful and inspiring. Taking a ‘selfie’ can be an incredibly empowering thing. Regardless of how many attempts to get the lighting right, outfits or products you try out or how many images end up being deleted, noone can deny that a ‘good’ selfie makes us feel good. This is a really valuable and worthwhile practice. To glean some self-love from a photograph, no matter how little, is an amazing feeling and to achieve that within a culture that constantly tries to mock and belittle people, particularly women? That’s powerful.

It is important however to remember that it only takes one comment to shatter that self-esteem, one that may have taken years and a lot of courage to cultivate.

Artist and photographer Lindsay Bottos created a project called ‘Anonymous’ last year when she grew tired of receiving negative messages online, most of which were left nameless. Many of the spiteful comments made to her focused on her appearance and the selfies she had posted.

Lindsay said about the project:

The act of women taking selfies is inherently feminist, especially in a society that tries so hard to tell women that our bodies are projects to be worked on and a society that profits off of the insecurities that it perpetuates. Selfies are like a ‘fuck you’ to all of that, they declare that ‘hey I look awesome today and I want to share that with everyone’ and that’s pretty revolutionary.” (Source: Buzzfeed)

So how do selfies apply to being a good feminist or feminist ally? In the same way that one negative comment or piece of writing can destroy someone’s self esteem, one positive one can perhaps build or even create confidence in that individual. What ‘Anonymous’ shows is only one side of the power of social media but if anything it demonstrates a need for an opposing force. one that raises people up and encourages them to believe in themselves.

A few seconds out of your day to tell a colleague, family member or perhaps even just an online follower something good about themselves or what they are posting can really make their day, and you are doing so in a world that may be telling them that who they are and what they do isn’t good enough.

Showing that hate-filled messages are all too common on the internet and emphasising how truly inappropriate it is, Lindsay is working on a follow-up project this year (cw: possibly NSFW) detailing the backlash she received after ‘Anonymous’ went viral. You can keep up to date with all of her work on her tumblr blog.

What do you think, are selfies an empowering and feminist practice?
Is anon hate linked to the media and beauty ‘ideals’?

Let me know in the comments below!

Jenna
x

Keep up to date with my latest posts on:
| Bloglovin’ | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Google+ |

Fear Of Missing Out: Why Your Feed Is Making You Miserable

When I first read the words ‘positive mental attitude’, an image is instantly conjured up of a caricature. That person is the typically overly-enthusiastic and sickeningly proactive ‘go-getter’.

The #fitfam who posts ‘no-pain-no-gain’ as they complete their third workout of the day, washing the sweat and muscle aches down with an acai-coconut blend.

The recently-promoted business executive who just had their highly-anticipated board meeting and landed their pitch after many sleepless nights and hours in front of a computer screen.

The student who made a hundred revision cards, laminated them, cross-referenced them with the wider reading list and aced the module.

Okay so I’m embellishing slightly, and whether we know these people or not, chances are we’ve wanted to be one of them at least once in our lifetime. That isn’t a bad thing, nor is it a bad thing to have achieved this status: you put in the work, you deserve something back, right?

Having read Jamie Varon’s thought-provoking piece, ‘This Is How We Date Now’, I began to consider how much of the imagery and anecdotal evidence projected to us on social media is comfortably curled up in what I like to call ‘the blanket of betterness’. When describing relationships, Varon makes the controversial statement:

We do it. We find it. Then, quickly, we live it for others. We tell people we’re in a relationship on Facebook. We throw our pictures up on Instagram. We become a “we.” We make it seem shiny and perfect because what we choose to share is the highlight reel. We don’t share the 3am fights, the reddened eyes, the tear-stained bedsheets… We don’t tweet 140 characters of sadness when we’re having the kinds of conversations that can make or break the future of our love. This is not.. Read more of this post over on Zusterschap.