Friday, 26 January 2018

In Defense Of The Superficial: The Real Reason I Started Blogging.


It's an interesting time to characterize yourself as a blogger. With multiple controversies that have gained international media attention, coupled with social media as a platform for people to voice their opinions, the blogging industry has been having a tough go of it. I've read scathing comments, from calling bloggers entitled, taunting them to get a real job, to seething comments about creating a curated, unattainable life. While these comments can be hurtful to read, especially when you not only classify yourself as a blogger but it's also your livelihood, I can brush them off as people not understanding the industry. There is one comment that does get under my skin though, and that's people's perception that this life that we live, the media we create, it's all purely just superficial and, as such, should be dismissed. While I'm not here to argue, or go toe-to-toe to change anyone's opinions, I do have my own story to share and I hope it helps to shed some light on why I'm here to defend the superficial, and how it kept me from drowning years ago.


I've mentioned multiple times on my blog and social media channels that I was working as a Funeral Director when I first started La Petite Noob. What I never mentioned is the toll the job was taking on my mental state and physical well-being. Without going into too much detail, the fact that my days centred around death started to really take a toll on me. Life can get messy, and the fact that I was dealing with the darkest that life had to offer on a daily basis lead to my own life feeling heavy. So, so heavy. Couple this with long hours, shift work and a brutal commute to-and-from work and I found myself having a hard time getting out of bed in the mornings. While the burden I was carrying felt like a weight that was keeping me just below the surface gasping for air, I still loved my job too much to quit and was searching for any lifeline to be able to continue working while still keeping afloat.

It was at my lowest point, after a particularly brutal day where I was confronted with the fragility of life, I decided that there's no time like the present. I wrote up a list of 30 things I wanted to do before I turned 30, linked it to my first post and thus La Petite Noob was created. Suddenly I had an outlet, a safe space that I had created all for myself that I could indulge in all of the lightness and surface topics that I so desperately craved in my day-to-day life. I would post about apartment décor, I would catch a breath of air. A post about outfits and holiday planning and I felt like I could kick myself up to the surface. Pretty soon I was posting regularly, and I started to feel like I was treading water on my own. Life became lighter. I needed this safe space to indulge in the superficial to keep me sane, combat the brutal truths about life I was facing on a daily basis, and keep me breathing.

While my case is definitely in the minority, since I'm sure very few people are coming from a place of working in funeral services, I do think that this sentiment can ring true for many. You guys, life is hard for everyone, no matter what the circumstance. And while I'm not here to argue, or try to prove a point, I do want to make my case for the superficial; why indulging in it doesn't make me any less of a person and how it nearly saved my life.



I hope this made sense! I hope that this post helps to shed some light into why I try to keep La Petite Noob a positive, happy place and the history that lead to that decision. I'm definitely very interested to hear your thoughts. What do you do to keep a lightness in your life?  Have you ever created something to help protect your mental health? Let me know!

Thank you so much for reading.

xo Joëlle
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13 comments

  1. I totally agree with you girl, we all need a break and honestly that’s what most bloggers use their platform for. It’s a space to post about all the pretty things that make us happy. I think it’s empowering that people use their creativity to make these beautiful worlds when honestly life can sometimes be a really ugly place. There’s nothing superficial in wanting to share and indulge in everything that’s beautiful, fun and light. I admire everyone that takes control of their lives in this way and choosing to focus on what makes them happy.

    Xox Kirsten // Http://www.kirstenwendlandt.com

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  2. I really related to this post!! I started my blog when I was unemployed and had nothing to look forward to in my days. My blog gave me a little bit of hope, a little bit of positivity in my otherwise mundane days of job applying. Also, when people just assume we are being superficial -- can they not acknowledge that we are total girlbosses!? Running our own companies! Building our own brands from scratch. It is amazing what the blogging community has done.

    Lee - leethrifts.com

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  3. Completely agree. I had a career in IT sales to school boards and cringed every time I walked into the building. I love blogging and following other people's blogs/accounts as they offer value to my life on a regular basis. Blogging has allowed me to work feom home so I can be with my kids every day, it doesn't get any better than that!

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  4. So glad you shared your story, Joelle! The world can be a dark place (especially behind a computer screen) and people will always criticize what they don’t understand. Don’t let the haters get to you! Keep on spreading positivity and pink <3

    Grayce @MousseTaco

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  5. I loved this, Joelle! I started my blog when I was freshly out of college in a really bad job situation. It was one of the things that helped me to feel creative, and it gave me something to look forward to while I was having a tough time with work. Thanks for sharing!

    Ana, http://shelearnsthings.com

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  6. I think we all needed a "safe space" or outlet to get it all out. I love this post. I resonate with it then and now. Blogging is so therapeutic and it's so important to focus on why we started, and that's for ourselves! Not for anyone else. What makes us happy and if that's a stunning picture, or a showcasing the beauty of the little things then so be it!

    xx gab
    pastelsandpastries.com

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  7. I couldn't agree more, girl -- people are so bold in comments but everyone is dealing with stuff so what's the harm in sharing something happy or lighter that makes people feel good?! I love your posts & appreciate a smack of pink when I'm having a more grey day ;) keep it up xx

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  8. I really enjoyed learning more about why you started your blog. I actually started my own for similar reasons. I was in a job that was draining me emotionally, and I need to find a creative outlet where I could explore my interests. I think blogging and social media get such a bad reputation sometimes because people don't realize that it's just a highlight real and there's a more complex person behind it.

    -Helen
    Sweet Helen Grace

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  10. This is a great post, Joelle. Not once since following you have I ever thought that what you post about is superficial. You are so open and honest and kind, and that absolutely shows through all of your work. Art of any kind is such an amazing release and the community you've built is so happy for you that you've found this platform! Keep making your life everything you want it to be. xo

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  11. I really enjoyed this post. On the flip side,I'm not a blogger at all but reading your blog and Instagram as well as many others is my kind of outlet. When I do need a mental break after doing a mundane office job all day its nice and refreshing to watch a video or read a light post about something I can relate to (or to just see a beautiful image)

    There are some blogs/Instagram's out there that give you product post after product post after product post and those kind of come off as disingenuous or like I'm reading a catalogue but that's why I enjoy your kind of posts so much because you keep it real and I don't feel like I'm constantly being sold things.(Also not saying this to knock sponsored posts or anything just that some times its overwhelming as a reader ... If that masks sense? I really enjoy your style of incorporating sponsored things as well bc you don't over do it and seem genuinely interested in the products.

    Anyways , keep up the good work girl! I always look forward to your posts and YouTube videos :) all the best in 2018 !

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  12. YES GIRL! What is crazy to me, is even “non-bloggers” are posting their best selves. For me, I started my blog as a way to feel closer to the fashion industry and feel more creative after leaving it, it before that, I still never posted “I had a shit today today” because let’s face it, all of us on instagram, blogger or not blogger, want to make our lives seem better. Maybe it’s superficial, or maybe it’s just making them happier.

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  13. So good and I love hearing your story! Thank you for continuing to educate people what a life of an influencer is like and it shouldn’t be tainted. Keep going and can’t wait to see you grow even more!

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