Lifestyle

A New Chapter!

I did a thing….I quit my job! The truth is, I didn’t quit my job to be happier because I am already very happy in my teaching career. I ended up quitting my job to pursue another passion and to fulfill my dreams. It was not an easy decision at all. It was extremely tough, but it was the right one to make.

I have a really hard time with change, so I know next year will be a process in finding my groove working from home all by my lonesome self. I am extremely social and love my friends at school and know this is going to be my biggest hurdle. I told Joel the other day that Alexa on Amazon is going to be my new best friend. She better love nonstop chit chat, because I talk A LOT. I have 2 scenarios that might have to happen, I will either have to create an imaginary best friend named Eddie or Alexa is going to have to step up her game to keep me company.

To everyone who has been my cheerleader and loved me through this process. THANK YOU! I wish I could give each of you a hug around the neck and a Starbucks gift card, haha! If you are interested in how I quit my job and became a full-time blogger, check out my responses below.

Q & A

How long have you been blogging for?

My website has been live since July 2017 and I have been on Instagram since 2016. The past year I have really invested a lot of time and money into my blog. By doing, my website traffic along with engagement increased drastically and quickly. Time is the biggest key in growing a blog. Since I was balancing a full-time job along with all my other responsibilities, to invest the time I needed to grow, I went many nights without even sleeping. I would stay up so late working and then have to get up early the next morning to go to my other job. It was tedious, but I knew I had to keep pushing if I wanted my blog to grow and become profitable.

What was your inspiration behind starting a blog? What’s your story?

I started this little space around 3 years ago with the purpose of being transparent in my struggles with both physical and mental health and also to share my love for cooking. Most of my life I struggled with depression, eating disorders, low self esteem, self hate, and even infertility. Furthermore, I was diagnosed with PCOS in my mid 20’s and had so many dark moments trying to conceive a child. As I reflect back on all the horrible moments, I have found that God was preparing me for where I am today. I didn’t know it then, but all the pieces to His puzzle and plan are finally coming together and it’s bigger and brighter than I could have ever imagined.

When I think back, there was a breaking point that will always be as clear as day. I was standing in front of a long mirror in a sport bra and panties. I remember staring at every part of my body and completely tearing myself apart with hateful words as tears poured down my face. I didn’t just break in that moment, I shattered and I screamed, “NO MORE.”

It wasn’t just my weight, it was me as a whole, I felt empty and broken. I felt gross and unlovable. I felt helpless. I refused to live trapped and hopeless so guess what I did? I changed my mind, I changed my heart and I changed my life. I had to fall so hard before I could get back up, but boy did I get back up. I got back up and fought so hard for myself every single day. Finding the Whole30 program absolutely saved me. It was the only program that changed me. Fast forward to almost 5 years later and I am 80 lbs lighter and have found a new healthy relationship with food and life.

My main mission here is to provide support, love and encouragement through sharing my past and present struggles so that you find peace in knowing you are not alone. Life can be beautiful and messy all at the same time and I feel that it is important to share both. Furthermore, I love creating meaningful recipes that are healthy and whole and that will satisfy the entire family, even the little ones. Health is a continuous journey and I want to share mine with my community along with learning and growing from each other.

Why did you name your blog Healthy Little Peach?

I have called all my friend “peaches” for as long as I can remember. I took this concept and paired it with the idea of sharing recipes along with my weight loss and health journey and came up with “Healthy Little Peach.”

Was becoming a full-time blogger always your main goal?

Heavens no! I started this with the idea of just following my passion of cooking and sharing fun recipes along with my health journey. As I got into the process, I fell in love and became obsessed with this hobby. I stayed consistent, set monthly goals for myself and studied and practiced nonstop to perfect my brand and content. I have grown so much in the past year and I would have never bet in a million years it would be where it is today. Consistency and studying is the key to being successful at blogging and taking it from a hobby to a full time job.

How did you balance working a full-time job and blogging full-time?

I am a mother of a 4-year-old and a 10-month-old. I am a full time 3rd grade teacher. I am a wife. I am a house cleaner. I am a cook. I am a friend. I am a blogger. All of these things described me this past year. There are not enough adjectives to paint a picture about just how hard this process has been. I have had so many people say that I have gotten to where I am based on luck, and boy..that is the furthest thing from the truth. I have sacrificed a lot to make my dream become a reality. I have gone many sleepless, my appearance has suffered ( I never fix my hair because I don’t have time), I never have a weekend or evening off, and sometimes my thoughts consume me. So yes, this road has not been easy, I have literally worked my butt off. I sacrificed all of these of things because I LOVE blogging, creating and connecting with such an awesome community. Every sacrifice I have experienced is so well worth it and I would do it all over again in a heartbeat. This process has not been a burden and I have come out on the other end so incredibly proud of myself. I have learned so much about who I am through this process and it really is so empowering.

I think it is important not to lose yourself in the process. I found that setting my purpose along with my WHY, helped me stay focus on the right path. I don’t steer from who I am to go along with the crowd. I try to be as authentic, human and normal as possible. My why and my purpose is to enjoy what I am doing, help others in the process, and honor God in everything. Keeping my purpose close to my heart has truly helped me in finding success.

When did you make the decision to quit your job and blog full-time?

I began visiting this subject with my husband back in October. Once my monthly blog income was staying consistent, growing each month, and far exceeding my current income, I knew it was time. We are also big planners and savers, so we have put back money that will serve as our safety net, just in case something unexpected happened. This was a really tough decision though, I truly love teaching my sweet 3rd graders. I had 10 great years in education and treasure all my memories not only with my students, but also with my colleagues and friends. I  believe in listening to my heart and following God’s purpose and path for my life. I can say with 100% certainty that I think this is His plan for me. So, here I am, taking a leap of faith and praying along the way. I honestly couldn’t be more excited about this new chapter.

How much do you make as a full-time blogger?

Blogging can absolutely bring in a ton of money if you play your cards right and truly understand the game. I am not one to reveal finances, but I can tell you that my blog is far exceeding what my teaching salary was bringing in each year. With that being said, don’t expect to wake up one day and say you want to start a blog and start making fist fulls of money the next day. It takes a lot of hard work, practice, sacrifices along with spending a ton of money investing on your blog, brand and equipment.

Through this process, what has been the hardest part?

I think through this process, criticism, negative comments and even the conversations that have been held behind my back from people who are closest to me has been the hardest part. My community has been so incredibly kind and accepting, but I have found that the people who I thought would be the happiest for me are the ones who rooting for me to fail, which is so sad.  I can’t comprehend it because I live in a bubble where I want to be happy for everyone and spread kindness and positive vibes, so it really is the hardest part of building something new.

Even comments such as, “this is all by luck” is really disheartening. Let me take a moment to set the record straight…it’s not luck at all. It’s called hard work, prayer, dedication, sacrifice, perseverance, passion and trusting God. The past year and a half I have taken the idea of starting a blog and turned it into a career. This wasn’t by chance, it happened because I put my whole heart into it, I invested with everything I had. I didn’t take “no” or “I don’t have time” as an excuse. I made it happen because it made me happy and brought out the best in me. I sacrificed sleep, weekends, and even my appearance to follow God’s purpose for my life.

If you have a passion and a dream, conquer it for YOU, nobody else. If it is something others put you down for, then let that be the motivation you need to move forward. Focus on you, be who you are and stand firm in your decisions and beliefs. Don’t waste your time or energy worrying about what everybody else thinks. If you are on the fence about pursuing your dreams, I’m here to tell you..DO IT! In the process I can guarantee you will find those people who are truly in your tribe for the right reasons. Stay close to these people and love them and let them love you, keep your focus clear of negativity.

Well, there ya go! Hopefully, this post has answered many of the questions you may have in regards to me quitting my job and becoming a full-time blogger. I want to leave you with a quote that I read most days during my journey. These words are ingrained in my mind and was the motivation I needed to keep fighting the good fight.

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts.”

XO-
MAC

Comments (10)

  • I love you Ashley. So proud of you!!

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  • Absolutely thrilled for you!

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  • Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and not lean on your own understanding
    In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your path straight. This verse comes to mind as I read your post. You’ve followed the Lord and He’s created this idea to pursue. May God continue to bless your work and use it for His glory. I am thankful to have stumbled on your Instagram feed awhile back! -Jenny in CA

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  • I’m incredibly happy for you! You inspire me to live a healthier life & I feel blessed to have found your blog.

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  • Thanks for answering so many questions about your decision and the process of becoming a full time blogger. I am truly so happy for you and know it takes a ton of time, effort, and sacrifice.

    Congrats, Mac! I can’t wait to see all the great things you have in store this year!

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  • May God continue to bless your journey. You are an inspiration. ❤

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  • Wishing you continued success. I love your blog and especially your Insta stories. Thank you

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  • Love this. So happy for you and following Gods plan for your life! I’ve often thought about starting a food blog but I don’t have a dream – yet. If it comes maybe I’ll try it! Whole 30 has changed my life too and my family’s life.

    Reply
  • This is so exciting, congrats!

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  • Congrats!!!! Love, love, love your “work”!!! Thank You!!

    Reply

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