I have to start this post by saying a big THANK YOU to all of you who reached out after I opened up about some blog-related struggles I’ve been having of late. Not only did it feel cathartic to say what had been on my mind, but your thoughtful suggestions and constructive criticism set me on a very energizing path.
For the past few weeks I’ve been thinking A LOT about wit & whimsy. After 11 years of blogging, I’ve certainly learned a lot but by the end of 2017 I was feeling some severe burnout. After talking to you guys about it, I began thinking more critically about what needed to change and I wanted to share today what those planned changes are. I hope you find the transparency refreshing and are left feeling as excited as I am about what’s to come on wit & whimsy.
Getting more personal.
I hear you loud and clear when so many of you said your favorite bloggers are the ones who write more personal posts. I get it because those are my favorite types of bloggers to follow, too! I think sometimes I forget how much I have to say and how much I like to story tell, truth be told. But, if we’re being honest, the reason I started this blog in the first place was because I liked sharing things! I’m always making recommendations to friends, sharing favorite finds with people IRL and testing out new things but sometimes I don’t do as good of a job bringing that to life through wit & whimsy anymore. I also, truthfully, sometimes feel like either A) my life isn’t that interesting or B) I don’t have enough going on in that I don’t have a boyfriend or a wedding to plan; I’m not pregnant or a new mom; etc. which is what I see a lot of other bloggers going through. The comparison game can be ROUGH. But in the end, I need to remind myself more often that I have the best readers and that my life doesn’t have to be perfect, merchandised or seem “on brand” all the time. Being myself will always be the best I can offer and that’s what I want to present 100% of the time moving forward. I find opening up about certain things very difficult but you may see me address those things in the future…
Quality over quantity.
I struggle with this one because, for years and years, five posts a week Monday through Friday has been my thing. (And six posts generally in the months of November & December.) It is A LOT. And as a result of the pressure I feel to have a post up every weekday morning at 6AM EST, the content sometimes comes out less than stellar. I think it is a large part of why I was feeling a bit of burnout. And while it doesn’t seem like the proper fix to say I’m only going to do three or four posts a week instead, what I do want to do is only put a post up that I feel 100% about. If I can’t find the words or I didn’t have the time on a particular day to prepare a post for the following day, I’m going to walk away and wait for the moment to be right. I want every post on wit & whimsy to be something you enjoy reading and find value in or delight in. So, therefore, there may be some days when I don’t have a post up and I hope you’ll forgive me for that. But I also hope that this, in the end, means I free up space in my brain and in my schedule to be able to write in a more meaningful way as mentioned above.
More on InstaStories.
Truth be told ever since I put my mind to it, I have had WAY more fun using InstaStories since the onset of the new year and I’ve been having so many more conversations with all of you as a result! I love seeing the DMs pop up in my inbox and find it fun having the chance to interact in a less formal manner. I want to try and incorporate a bit more video, a bit more behind the scenes and even more NYC moments as the latter is one of my most requested topics. Through and through though I want my Stories to reflect realness, be relatable & reveal more of my personality.
In a nutshell, design is not my forte. I have no graphic design background and it’s an area I’ve shied away from largely. That being said, the recent redesign has inspired me to improve the overall aesthetics of the content I share across my platforms. I’ll be rolling out cleaner, prettier templates for regular columns like budget buys and the beauty edit in the coming weeks.
A monthly Newsletter.
I planned to do this in 2016 and now here we are in 2018 and I still haven’t upped my newsletter game. Ugh. I thought long and hard about it and actually decided against a weekly newsletter and want to tee this up monthly. In it I hope to share exclusive content but also my favorite posts from the month, items that were trending that I posted and it may also include some extra links similar to those I share in the weekly roundup. You all have shared how much you love the weekly roundups so I’m looking to bring more of that type of sharing to you. Stay tuned for this! It most likely will roll out in Q2 as I’ve only just gotten the ball rolling.
A new daily newsletter template.
Speaking of newsletters…if you subscribe via e-mail to get a new wit & whimsy post straight to your inbox let me first of all say: I’m sorry. I’m sorry the template it comes in is SO ugly and in the words of Kevin McCallister, “it’s bothered me for years.” But I never sucked it up to invest in making it better but that’s all changing! I’m working on a design that will not only be prettier on the eyes but ideally more functional for you all, too!
Back to basics.
I mean this particularly as it relates to my outfits. A lot of you have expressed the want for more work-ready outfits that you could copy and when it comes down to it while I am a girl who loves dressing up and loves her snazzier accessories, I also love comfort + I wear a lot of denim. Sometimes I don’t even photograph my most-worn looks anymore. I’d like to get to capturing more of those. And I also plan to share more day to day looks over on Instagram Stories.
Sometimes my perfectionist tendencies mess with my mind and bring out my worst inner critic. I catch myself feeling inferior to other bloggers and then question whether not to share content because it isn’t the prettiest photo or something similar. I want to get over this! Life isn’t perfect. And parts of mine have been really messy with really real stuff – this I know. I hope you’ll start to see more realness and more personality across my platforms.
I have loved shooting with Bekka Palmer for the past 4+ years. I remember being SO nervous to meet with her for our first shoot because I had never hired a photographer before. She was about to quit her full time job to be self employed and we, rather instantly, clicked. Today, so many years later, I am lucky to call her a close friend and I couldn’t have asked for a better creative partner. But with that, Bekka is expanding her other business (it’s been doing SO WELL and I am so proud of all the work she’s poured into it!) and will be doing less photography work this year so I will be branching out and working with new photographers in 2018. You may have already spotted this from this post last week & in today’s photos. I’m so sad to be not working with Bekka as often but I also think having a bit of photography variety here may be nice! As they say, variety is the spice of life!
I’ve really been making major efforts to be more responsive to comments / DMs on Instagram, on witwhimsy.com and on other platforms. Sometimes I read things in transit and then forget to come back to them and hate that behavior of mine! Hold me to this but I’m definitely working on it!
This was actually something I touched on in this post, but I haven’t been allowing myself much opportunity for inspiration of late it feels like. I need to remind myself how many ideas come from sometimes the simplest of activities such as reading a magazine, listening to a podcast or having coffee with a blogger friend to brainstorm. I want to allow myself more time for inspiration this year so that I can better write the more meaningful, personal posts you all have requested.
So, there you have it. Change is on the way! That was…A LOT! I kept taking notes in this post for the past few weeks as I started to think of things and then suddenly realized how much there was that I wanted to change. It had been A LONG time since I really put strategic thinking into w&w (which feels somewhat embarrassing to say) and it felt refreshing to do so. I do a lot of strategy for my other business so I’m not sure what was holding me back from thinking more critically about the w&w brand, audience and content. I am a hustler. But I wasn’t hustling for w&w. Somewhere along the way I lost that and I’m looking forward to having it back.
All that being said, I had a few things I was hoping to get some additional feedback on! If you have a couple minutes to copy + paste the following questions & answer the below in comments or via Ask Meghan, I’d be so grateful! I know, I know I already asked for feedback BUT…after the comments, emails and feedback you guys sent the other week, I feel like you know me and you know what I’m about so I’d love some additional thoughts on the following, in particular.
A few more questions for you guys:
- Do you like the number of links currently in the Weekly Roundups? Or would you like more in the Shopping and Reading sections?
- Do you guys like the NYC guide and is there anything that can be improved upon?
- Do you follow me on Pinterest & Twitter & Facebook? If no, why not? If yes, what do you like?
- If you follow on Facebook, would you like if I did more sale alerts or favorite finds types of posts? (Similar to the shopping links from the weekly roundups?)
- I have long loved quotes and my mom recommended incorporating that into my blog posts. Would you guys be into my sharing a quote in each post perhaps at the bottom as a conclusion of sorts?
- For those following on Instagram have you guys noticed a change in the past couple of weeks? I’ve been making efforts to be more real in captions (and showcase my personality) and just share more on Stories overall. I’d love to hear if you think things have improved over on that front!
- Anything else!? (and I mean it! Anything!)
I hope you’ll hold me accountable for the above and I hope we can keep the dialogue between us open! I always love hearing from you guys!
Also, totally unrelated: debuting my new hair! I’m experimenting with going back to my natural color so I got something darker & more seasonal. I’m a person of such habit + routine so changing it up is rare but I’m kind of liking the moodier color!
Hope you’re all having a wonderful week & thank you, all, for being the best!
Sweater (styled the cream here) // Coat (now on sale; wearing a M) // Jeans (only $56! Fit TTS) // Bag // Sunglasses // Boots
p.s. My 2018 goals & the things I loved in 2017.
Love all your ideas about quality over quantity BUT remember all of us are checking in to see what you’re up to, where you are, what you’re wearing. Even if you snap a selfie (your photographer being busy may be a gift in disguise) of you before an errand etc. Quick posts like “I always reach for this…” is less packaged and more real life. Even if it’s something small we are all interested in the little things too! A pic of a shop window/view from the train/interesting people will let us know what you find beautiful/interesting/confusing
Lastly for me personally I am SO OVER the kids as props and hearing about weddings!
Have a great day!!
Thank you so much for this encouragement, Cassie! Definitely trying to do more off-the-cuff-everyday. Thank you for the thoughtful comment!! So appreciate it!
Meghan! So excited for the changes on your blog and hopeful that it’s good for your body, mind and soul, too! Already miss having regular conversations with you. See you soon, friend.
Same, friend!! Excited to see where our gigs take us this year! <3 you longtime!!
I’m a regular reader for a long time, I really like coming here every morning to check out your posts. You have a great variety on different topics which I can relate a lot! (not all us are engaged, with boyfriend or kids so its cool not to read about that in every blog I follow).
Before your blog I really didn’t like those roundups on blogs but now I can’t wait for Fridays to read yours. In this section, I would love to see more links on Reading.
The only thing I wished was to see a little bit more of your life on Insta and its happening. =)
Hope you find the balance you are looking for with the new changes.
Greetings from Mexico,
Monyale – thank you!! So glad you like the variety & love that you love the roundups! They are my favorite to put together!! And definitely more in-the-moment on Instagram to come!!
I just want you to know that you shouldn’t feel as though your posts are less exciting because your aren’t pregnant or planning a wedding. A lot of us girls have regular 9-5 jobs, no boyfriends, no babies. So it is nice to see posts that we can relate to. I think you’re doing a great job and I have always been really impressed with your content and the fact that you do post six times a week by 6am! I like the fact that some of your posts have a lot of content and some don’t. With that being said- I think we’ll all be okay if you cut it down to 3-4 days a week. And/or if you don’t have something up at 6am. (Personally, I’m still in bed). I don’t know how you did it for so long. I would absolutely have faced burnout as well.
TOTALLY agree! It’s something silly that goes through my head from time to time. And thanks for helping me to feel some relief about perhaps less content moving forward! I want to focus on storytelling vs. the pressure of feeling like I have to have a new post up! Thanks for being such a lovely, loyal reader, Yana!!
First, LOVE today’s photos! The outfit is stellar (I’m biased because I could live in grey and black), but you also just look relaxed and happy. I come to this blog because you are YOU. If I want weddings or mommies or dating (and as a married woman in my 40s with no kids, I actually don’t need any those) I’ll find those blogs too. I love this quote from Dave Grohl when he was the keynote speaker at SXSW Festival several years ago … “It’s YOUR VOICE. Cherish it. Respect it. Nurture it. Challenge it. Stretch it and scream until it’s fucking gone. Because everyone is blessed with at least that, and who knows how long it will last.” He didn’t actually say “No one is you and that is your power,” but I still think that’s a great mantra that we should all repeat to ourselves daily. And if this didn’t make it clear, I love quotes so bring ’em on! 🙂
SAME with gray and black over here! It’s 90% of my winter wardrobe – ha! And Marcia, I LOVE that quote!! Thank you so much for sharing it. Thank you, thank you!
What an awesome post! This is your year!! Also, I’m loving your outfit – those black boots are amazing.
The Style Scribe
Thank you, dear friend!! <3 you
ok, Meghan, I cant tell you how much I relate to this – as someone who also is a career-focused gal who is not married, doesn’t have kids, isn’t planning for a wedding – but my readers def like it more when I get personal and I also find that super challenging. I just did a very personal post about the Women March and people really loved it. I am now in the position of running my blog on my own for the first time and its like you are reading my thoughts AND insecurities! EEK! Hope all is well with you babe!
Whit, THANK YOU! Always love hearing from you. So glad you, too, are opening up and BRAVO for you embarking out on your own!
these photos are so beautiful! that sweater looks so cozy and delightful.
in regards to personal content: PLEASE don’t feel like you’re dull or uninteresting just because you don’t have a wedding to plan (hi–i also don’t have a boyfriend or babies). i totally get the comparison game, but give yourself some credit!! you’re a great writer and i come to this space because i love to listen to you and your point of view. i have always been so impressed with how you balance your work and this blog, but if you want to cut back on posts, do it! i’m sure this will alleviate the burnout feeling you’ve been experiencing and may also help you get the creative juices flowing again!
Cait, thank you lady!! So appreciate these words!! Sometimes I let the comparison game get to me even when I know it is silly! (and so glad you like the outfit!!)
First, the hair! Loving this look on you! Bringing in some late winter edge. Crossing between sweet Parisian chic to rocker/ post apocalyptic grey neutrals. Perfection!
Echo the above comments regarding more off the cuff content, i.e. here’s my go to unform, my quick on the go meal, more a day in the life of, affordable style hacks, cosmetic gems to buy at Duane Reade. Gosh I miss the DR, maybe that’s just me! But that’s only because you asked! Your content has such a grace/ ease and effortless consistency to it. You make it look super easy, but I’m sure it was INTENSE to crank out so much lovely material so often! Take care of you, we return to catch up with you! Continue to bring it at a pace and with balance that centers you!
Thanks so much for your feedback, Claire! Love the sentiment of your words and am definitely going to work on sharing more recommendations! Launching a new column dedicated to this and also definitely am overdue for a drugstore beauty post so have that noted to share this year for sure!