Loving Your Work: Fashion Blogger & Stylist Ciara O’Doherty On Overcoming Career Fears
What was your ?aha!? moment, the moment you knew you wanted to do in life / take the plunge in your career?
Looking back, it’s hard to pinpoint an exact moment that I knew for sure that this was the path for me, but I always knew I wanted to work for myself, and I’ve always been hugely interested in fashion and commerce. Before I first took the leap and started blogging full time it was such a scary concept to work for myself, but once I actually made the move, everything fell into place, and I haven’t stopped since!
What were your biggest fears before striking out?
I think the biggest worry was the lack of financial security, which is the same with most freelancers I guess. I have completely supported myself all through my career since college, at one point working two jobs to get by while building my blog and platforms in the evenings and on weekends, the hustle was so very real, haha! I think it was that strong work ethic and need to be independent that helped me get where I am, it’s been the greatest motivator I could ever ask for, and I wouldn’t change a thing about those years of grinding.
What was your biggest career fail and what did you learn from it?
I honestly don’t believe in failures as such, I see them more as lessons that help shape and steer your path. I’ve had plenty of fashion fails, mind you! If you scroll back to some of my first blog posts back in 2010 you’ll see plenty of cringe-worthy outfits.
What does your working day look like??
My day probably looks a little chaotic, but here we go: It’s usually a 7am start time, then coffee, breakfast, shower, and I’m always sat at my desk by 8. My everyday tasks are different, so I start by going over my agendas for my blogging work, and Taylor & Rose (my brand) and making a plan for the day, which is really essential. I take on the Taylor & Rose admin and orders before I start on any jobs or projects related to my blog, which is often more creative and involves writing and editing for longer periods. It takes a bit of juggling now that I have two separate ships to man, but I honestly love it. I live near Phoenix park so I usually try to get a walk in at some point for fresh air, although now it’s mostly just post-office runs for orders every day. Afternoon and evenings are usually spent on the computer editing videos, emailing, and writing content, and I’m usually at my desk until 8 or 9pm most evenings, sometimes a little longer.
Now that things with Taylor & Rose have gotten really busy (no complaints!) I’m working longer hours, and last night I was packing orders until 1am. So I try to do a little mindfulness practice in the afternoon/early evening to help clear my head and refresh for the rest of the day. So rather than a lunch break spent scrolling social media, I eat lunch at my desk, and afterward, I put away my phone for 20 minutes and sit on a cushion and just try to clear my head. More often than not, it turns into me falling asleep for the 20 minutes until the timer goes off, but either way, I feel great afterward! I never understood the fuss about napping before, but it’s kept me on top of everything these past few weeks, and I think I’m a cat-nap convert now.
What is your advice to anyone who feels unhappy in their career?
I would say this: No one else is responsible for your happiness. It’s up to you and only you to create it. So much of our lives are taken up by the work that we do, so doesn’t it make sense to pursue a career that truly makes us happy? No amount of money or security is worth sacrificing your happiness for. It’s 2017, there are so many ways to earn a living doing something that makes you happy. It’s never too late to learn a new skill or to take on a new course or qualification. There is always time to try something new, to take even a small step towards finding a career that you do love.