How was your Labor Day Weekend? Ours was VERY unplugged, which was really nice! We spent time at the Lake House and came back here on Sunday to wind down the weekend at home!
Today, we’re back with another Ask Jess! Grab your second coffee (or maybe a glass of wine, depending on your time zone? ) I’m answering a few more recent reader questions below! Let’s jump in!
What’s one place in the world you’ve been dying to go?
I’ve always really wanted to go to Singapore! (This was only amplified upon reading/seeing Crazy Rich Asians. ?) Istanbul and Morocco have been up there for a really long time as well!
What types of products does your esthetician use? Any clean brands?
Leah uses clean, medical-grade brands whenever possible! Many of the products she uses are only available if you’re a licensed med spa so I’m not familiar with the brands by name. You can always get a discount when you book mentioning my name!
How do you become an influencer?
Hmmm…teach yourself how to master the skills equivalent to like 5 different careers (writing, editing, photography, search engine optimization, graphic design, social media marketing…those are the ones that I can think of as of now?) Work 40 additional hours a week on your blog for several years for little to no money while having a full-time job and/or several side-hustles, and be willing to prioritize it over pretty much everything else in your social life for several years. ?It is truly the hardest way to make money I can think of, so if you want to do it for the money, I’d definitely recommend finding a different job! ?If you’re only in it for the money, you will burn out very quickly. But if you’re in it for the passion–it’s the best thing I can ever recommend.
Really–the good thing about the internet is that you can use it to become whatever you want to be. If you want to become an influencer–just do it! Rip off the band-aid! Start writing, start posting, but treat it like a business from day one, not a hobby. Not sure how to do something? GOOGLE IT. There is nothing else you need other than google and yourself to accomplish whatever you want to do.
Launch your brand just like you would launch a brick and mortar business. You need a business plan, a unique point of view, distinguishable branding, and you need to cater to your audience like nobody else other than you can do! Be ruthless with your goals. Map out how to get there. My biggest piece of advice is to surround yourself with others that are on a similar level to you–you will learn SO much from one another. For example, if not for Kelly teaching me how to use a camera, my blog photos would probably still look like this. ?
If you want more blogging tips, go to Blogging4Keeps.com! It’s a site for bloggers that Blair and I created together a few years back–we don’t update it anymore but there is a goldmine of info on there!
Favorite book you’ve EVER read? How often do you read?
That is so hard! Knee-jerk reaction answer is The Nightingale. I think I need to read it again. It’s so, so good. Read more book reccos right here! How often I read really depends on the season I’m in and how busy I am, but I would say I typically read between 3-5 books per month.
How did you learn how to cook? I want to learn, but I’m SO BAD at it. Any tips?
I grew up helping my mom in the kitchen, so I would learn by doing and by watching her. The best way to learn how to cook is the same as learning anything else–just do it. Get out of your own head. The biggest mistakes I see new cooks make are burning something or under seasoning it. So, to avoid those issues, A. Set a timer and pay attention. B. Taste as you go and adjust as you need to. Learn what spices are typical of certain types of cuisines–then, if something doesn’t taste quite good enough, you’ll know what you can add to make a dish more flavorful.
Additionally, try to push yourself to not use recipes all the time. Sometimes if I want to make something, I’ll look at a few different recipes to get good ideas, but then I’ll just do my own thing from there. Add a little of this and a little of that, taste as you go, and you’ll learn SO MUCH so fast, because you don’t have recipes as training wheels!
Here’s another example: Have you ever gone to the same place over and over, using Google Maps every time to get there? If your phone died, you would STILL have no clue how to get there, because you’ve just been on auto-pilot, following Google’s instructions. This is the same with cooking. Recipes=Google Maps. I’m not saying recipes are bad, but I am saying that you will become an infinitely better cook if you learn to cook intuitively vs. following a recipe verbatim.