This weeks spotlight is on Chelsea O’Driscoll, the lifestyle blogger behind What Chelsea Said:
Tell us a little bit about yourself
Hello! I’m Chelsea, a twenty-something mum and lifestyle/parent blogger from Cardiff, Wales. I started my blog this year and have recently branched out into freelance writing. If I’m not sat at my desk with my hair in a bun furiously trying to write before my one-year-old wakes from his nap, you’ll find me walking my 3-year-old cavapoo or at the gym or eating something I shouldn’t. I’d love for you to join me on my socials and witness me trying to wing parenthood every single day.
What made you want to start a blog?
When I became a mum, my life and everyone’s around me were orientated around this little baby! Everything I did was for the new addition, I never did anything for myself. I started to go to the gym and do something more for me but I wasn’t satisfied, I needed something more and something to tick my brain over and take my mind off the fact I hadn’t slept properly for days! So I started my blog, I started on a site called Medium and very quickly fell in love with my new hobby so constructed a website and it’s been an endless writing affair since then.
Who/what are your inspirations/influences?
I love love love Dolly Alderton. Her podcasts, her memoir. I find her extremely relatable and raw – there’s something admirable about someone being completely honest and opening themselves up to the world. This is exactly how I want my writing to be. I want people to read my writings and think, ‘I know where she’s coming from’ or ‘I’ve experienced that too!’
What’s your biggest success or achievement so far?
This has to be my little boy. I never thought that I’d have adapted to parent life so quickly and love every second as much as I do. I still look at my little boy every day and wonder how is he even real? Its the strangest feeling being pregnant and then 9 months later, you have a human! It’s very surreal but a very lovely feeling.
What do you do when you’re not blogging?
I work part-time at an insurance company, I blog and run my own website What Chelsea said, I dabble in a bit of freelance. I’m a doggy mum and an actual mum to a one-year-old. Saying this out loud makes even me wonder how I do it all? I’m really not sure…
What can you not live without?
Carbs. For sure. I just love a carbohydrate, in any form. Chips, crisps, scotch eggs! A beige buffet is my dream. Secondly to carbs it would be food in general closely followed by my phone which is just awful. With that being said, diets go out the window as soon as I see any sort of beige. I’m starting to think I should’ve picked my son, partner and dog as the answer to this question…
What does work-life balance mean to you?
Ah! This question! I get it a lot. Work-life balance is tough, especially being a parent. My to-do list constantly grows and my washing basket is definitely my mortal enemy but somehow I seem to manage. I work 3 days a week for an insurance company and the other 4 days I’m either being a mum or trying to write and manage my social media but sometimes I just need to shut off. Turn off all the socials and sit in front of Netflix with a glass of my favourite vino and let out a big ole sigh. I definitely don’t think I’ve nailed the work/life balance yet, but it’s definitely a work in progress.
What’s next for you/your business?
I’m excited about where my blog is going. I’m becoming a more confident writer and recently I’ve gone from posting one blog a week to two! This is a big step for me as being a new mum and working, I need to find time to write! I’ve also recently branched out into creating Media Kits for content creators/influencers and also for businesses. Beyond this, who knows what’s in store for me and the blog but I just hope we keep growing. We’ve had a fantastic 6 months!
How do you handle criticism or setbacks?
In my younger years, I’d get quite defensive with criticism and take it to heart as though the person giving me feedback was personally criticising me. However, in my older years, I’ve grown to learn that feedback is key and setbacks just make you stronger for the comeback. All feedback is essential to keep you growing. A situation that you may feel is exactly what you want, may not come about and you may be sad but something better is always around the corner. I’ve discovered, if I work hard enough, all sorts of doors will open.
What advice would you give to people starting out?
Just go for it. Take a leap, you never know how something might go until you start! I didn’t know what I was doing when I started my blog but I had something to say and I wanted people to hear it, so I started writing. The feedback I had was amazing and encouraged me that I was doing the right thing. If you’re destined to do something, it’ll come to you eventually, you’ve just got to reach out and take it.