Stacey Banfield

Christchurch Based Makeup Artist & Blogger

Never lose sight of the shore – 5 lesssons Social Media has taught me

For over a month now I have typed and back spaced about a million times. Sometimes it’s bloody nerve wracking writing about a topic people want to know more about, especially something like this. Daily I get questions about how to become an “influencer” or how can I be sent “free stuff”. There’s so much more to having a presence online than the above. First of all, I think the word influencer is thrown around way too much these days, every tom dick and harry is an “influencer” if im being honest.

Personally I prefer the word content creator to describe what I do. I create content to share with my following for brands on my own social platforms, aswell as content from my general life. I also create content for companies and brands that  I never use personally and is only for their advertising purposes. I spend hours weekly scouting places to shoot, writing articles and communicating with my following online. This isn’t a job everyone can do, yes I may influence people to buy something I have talked about but ultimately it’s so much more than that. You have to be so dedicated and TRULY love what you do.

The idea of this post originally was to talk about how I have seen changes happen in the online community during my 5 years of blog life, but I didn’t want to say the wrong thing so instead i’ve decided to talk about the 5 lessons I have personally learnt in the  years I have shared my life online. For me I hold my value in the fact that my whole journey has always been about inspiring those who choose to follow me. I have never been one to want to be “Famous” or “known” – because what purpose do you hold if that’s all it’s about for you.

I feel so blessed to have created a community where I am in the position to share my story, to show that you are capable of doing amazing things and that life although it isn’t always easy should be about creating epic moments that keep your soul alive! I love to see people add more purpose to their life, it brings me so much joy and reminds me exactly why I even began my online accounts.

Living a life online certainly isn’t easy, these days there is so much more going on and SO many more people working within the market. For the most part people are awesome, but in recent months there has definetly been a real shift in being able to maintain your “individuality” I suppose is the right word to use. So I thought by me sharing the 5 lessons I have learnt, it may make everyone a little more aware, of shifting your focus to do more good in the social world and life in general, instead of being just like everyone else.

 

Stay in your lane & Maintain your originality– This is one of the most important things to me. I have always been someone to keep within my own little bubble and just potter away at watering my own damn garden of goodness. I’ve learnt that people will try and bring you down, they will see you doing well and then try to mimic that, but at the end of the day your power is that there’s only one YOU! Don’t let petty dramas distract you from the reason you began. Although it can be hurtful to be the target of someone’s vendetta, which half the time will be someone who doesn’t even know you, just always remember you are worth so much more than what they are trying to contribute to your space.

Always be real & don’t compare yourself to others – In a world that has become so socially glamourised it’s so important to just be true to yourself. From Gucci shopping sprees to holidays in the Maldives I personally know most of my audience don’t hold value in the glamourised life. They respect me for being me, and they love feeling like they are apart of my journey. I am not here to pretend im someone I’m not. The places we visit, my obsession with nature, the style of clothing I wear, my vibe, the way I talk is the real me and it feels so bloody awesome just to be content with that!

Don’t ever let social media make you feel like you can’t be YOU! So if your looking to start an online life, just make sure you remain relateable to your audience from the beginning. As for comparing yourself to others this is something we all do too often. It’s hard not to I know, but if you remain true to who you are, and do the things you love without worrying what others think then it will put you in such a better place.

Who cares if their images look better than yours, it doesn’t mean you need to start acting like you live that style of life just to get a few likes on your pictures, or to give yourself validation. Maintaining a lifestyle that isn’t normal for you, just to please others is going to become very draining for you, don’t waste your precious energy on it.

 Be a good friend ALWAYS – Sounds simple doesn’t it, yet it’s one of the things that seems the hardest for people to do?! You wouldnt believe the amount of times I have heard about people within the community ditching their real friends, just to try and get in with others who are socially seen as “cooler” or someone who can add value to their own profile by the way they look, dress or act.

No matter how many followers someone has, you shouldn’t shit on good people at all. I’ve had it done to me before and it’s horrible, but to be honest you don’t want people in your life who are like that. The ones who are forever chasing that next person who they think will make them famous, or connnect them to good oppourtunities just aren’t worth your time.

Remember that people will never forget how you made them feel, so if someones nice to you be nice back. If they support you, support them back, don’t just use people as a stepping stone or copy what you see them doing because they are doing well- this burns bridges and you wont end up gaining anything at all. If you find yourself becoming this person, don’t ever be afraid to apologise to the real friends you may have hurt. It takes a lot of balls to admit when your wrong, and afterall true friends are hard to come by!

 

4. Don’t let your online life take over your real life – Always make sure you find that work life balance! I’m still learning to use my time wisely to ensure it’s not effecting any of my relationships. Things like actually putting my phone down when im out with friends and really taking the time to be involved in the conversation being had.  It’s so easy to get lost in your phone I know, but just make sure your still giving attention to the people and parts of your life that are important to you. Make sure your also getting a little exercise time, things like taking the dog for a walk, helps to clear the foggyness from the mind, it also gives you time to think and gain perspective.

5. Stay true to your purpose and Rise above – Does this even need explaining? Like anything in life if you truly love what you do, let it be heard. Passion is something some people really struggle to find within themselves, so once you find what it is you absolutely love doing go for it! For me it’s the driving force behind my accounts, along with being able to share my life my followers know im an avid beauty junkie and absolutely love working as a Makeup Artist.

AS for Rise Above – This has become my motto, no matter what life throws at you Rise above, there will always be someone who thinks they are better than you, or someone you will compare yourself too but honestly it’s not worth your energy. You are put on this Earth because you are capable of making your mark, so Rise above and aim to always be your best self!

 

 

Take it from me, i’ve been through it all. Social Media is an amazing tool the way it allows us to connect to others, just don’t let it take over your life or blur your vision of who you truly are. Instead share your story, make a positive impact and allow others to feel they are so capable of doing the same.

 

Stacey x

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