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Episode 214: Use Artificial Lighting as a Tool to Balance Work-Life with Whitney Wright

In episode 214, we talk with Whitney Wright about how she’s found a healthy work-life balance with tips she’s learned along her blogging journey.

We cover information about how blogging expands to the container you provide it, so decide what size container it is, how artificial lighting can help you manage your work load better and why you need to be in control of your work.

Listen on the player below or on iTunes, TuneIn, Stitcher, or your favorite podcast player. Or scroll down to read a full transcript.


Guest Details

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Whitney’s blog features easy to follow recipes with common household ingredients. She used to exclusively photograph and shoot video with natural light but has transitioned to full artificial light and love it! She enjoys making videos for food bloggers as well as large food brands. Whitney’s branding style is very consistent so people know what they’ll get every single time.

Takeaways

  • Shooting photography in artificial light allows you to have more convenience in your personal and work life. You can adapt to shoot in the early am or later in the pm.
  • When you are shooting with artificial light, there’s a lot less editing in regards to the tweaking of the light.
  • Keep your set up simple. Don’t invest in expensive equipment, start with a few items to try it out.
  • Your editing will adjust and adapt, but you’ll get used to it and you can edit to make it look like you’re using natural light.
  • Reach out to people you know in the blogging world. Have a video or two or three that you can send so they can see what your style is like, if they were to send you a recipe so they would have a pretty good feel of the end product that you would return to them.
  • Reach out personally to some friends within the blogging community. Talk to them, gauge your experience level, and make a decision based on all of that information. Take into account what your time is worth. your energy, the stress, then go for it. But at the end of the day, you have to be happy with your decision or you won’t offer quality work.
  • Have a plan and be intentional with the tasks that you want to accomplish in a specific timeframe. Work when it’s efficient for you, when you can be the most efficient.
  • Work hard and as fast as you can. Don’t multi-task, it’s inefficient.
  • When you’re working, be intentional about limiting distractions.
  • Blogging is like a gas because it will fill up whatever size container you will give it. If you don’t give it a container, it will fill up your entire life. So you have to set boundaries.

Resources Mentioned

Whitney’s artificial light set up includes: Dracast LED light panels, diffuser or diffuser sheet, godox 8600 pro, umbrella, at times a strip box.

Transcript

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Intro:

Welcome to Eat Blog Talk, where food bloggers come to get their fill of the latest tips, tricks, and insights into the world of food blogging. If you feel that hunger for information, we’ll provide you with the tools you need to add value to your blog. And we’ll also ensure you’re taking care of yourself, because food blogging is a demanding job. Now, please welcome your host, Megan Porta.

Megan Porta:

Hey awesome food bloggers. Do you struggle with knowing exactly what you should be doing to move the needle forward in your business? Do you struggle with knowing what to focus on next? If so, if this sounds like you, I have two solutions for you. Number one is mastermind groups. There is so much power in getting people together and helping to solve each other’s problems. At Eat Blog Talk, we have put together our own mastermind groups and we are hosting these weekly. You can join at any time. You can try it out for a month or you can sign up for a quarter or you can go all in and sign up for an entire year. Come join us. See if it’s a great fit for you, and this will really help you to solve those problems you’re having in your business and give you clarity about what you should be doing next to move your business forward.

The next solution is the Eat Blog Talk membership. I have spent all of 2021 so far putting so much value inside of the membership. It is such a supportive and wonderful place to be for food bloggers. We are learning so much from each other. We are joining together in monthly intensive calls, where we focus on very specific parts of food blogging, in order to grow our businesses in massive ways. We also have guest experts come in and join us very regularly to talk about really specific parts of food blogging. We get one-on-one access to these experts such as Matt Molen from email crush, Casey Markee from Media Wyse. So many great people are joining us in these sessions and they are super valuable. There are so many reasons why you should be in the membership. I could not even start touching on all of it. If you’re tired of wandering around aimlessly in your business and not knowing what to focus on, give the membership a try for free for two weeks. Go to eatblogtalk.com. You can sign up for the masterminds there, and you can also start the process of getting into the membership for two weeks, just to check it out. The rest of us can’t wait to see you inside.

What’s up, food bloggers. Welcome to Eat Blog Talk. This podcast is for you. Food bloggers, wanting value and clarity to help you find greater success in your business. I have Whitney Wright with me today from saltandbaker.com. We’re going to have a discussion about artificial lighting as a tool to balance work life Whitney’s blog features easy to follow recipes with common household ingredients. She used to exclusively photograph and shoot video with natural light, but has transitioned to full artificial light and she loves it. She enjoys making videos for food bloggers, as well as large food brands. Whitney’s branding style is very consistent, so people know what they’ll get every single time. Whitney, I’m excited to chat about this with you today, but first we all want to hear your fun fact.

Whitney Wright:

I’m so excited. Thank you for having me. As far as the fun fact goes, I actually met my husband when I was three years old. He lived directly across the street from me and I was still young and my family moved across town. So we lived about 15 minutes away, but we went to the same high school. However, we never talked to each other. He was a little bit older than me. But then we became friends and started dating when we were in college. So people always think that’s funny and it’s a little bit ironic, but I have memories of him when I was little and here we are.

Megan:

Oh my gosh. That’s so cool. So you grew up really close in proximity, but you never really had a friendship, but you just kinda knew you knew he was there.

Whitney:

Right. Our families knew each other and were friends, but it wasn’t like he and I ever communicated.

Megan:

Ah, that’s so funny. I love that for some reason. You were always around him and then you formed a friendship in college. Oh my gosh. That’s so cool. Okay. So I’m super excited, Whitney, to talk to you about balance ,work-life balance because this is a huge topic for me too. I love talking about this. It’s a big deal. It’s really hard to find that balance. Especially when we work from home. We’re food bloggers, we’re in our basements or sitting on our couches working. Some of us have kids around and families and food to make, right. So it’s hard to draw those boundaries and figure out how to make it work. So it sounds like you’ve got some really great points for us. Let’s start by talking about your lighting situation because you use lighting as a way to find more balance and find more time. First, would you mind telling us how you moved from natural lighting to shoot your photos and your video into using artificial lighting, how that transpired and how it helps you?

Whitney:

Yeah, so I was exclusively shooting with natural light, which I’m sure a lot of people are still doing. I was doing video with natural light and my photography with natural light. I love the look of it. It looks beautiful. There’s a reason why people like it, but I was almost forced to move into artificial light because my family moved. The house that we live in currently just was not conducive for natural light usage. I tried what I could, but I just couldn’t get it to look how I wanted. So I gladly accepted the fact that I was going to shoot artificial and I love it. If ever given the chance to shoot natural, I would probably still use artificial because it’s so convenient. As far as video goes, when you are shooting with artificial light, there’s a lot less editing in regards to the tweaking of the light.

Sometimes the sun will go behind the clouds and then you’re having to change the white balance frequently. There’s just a lot more chopping of the video, cutting it, fixing lighting. So artificial light has really helped make my editing process a lot smoother and faster. With photography, I love artificial light because it has allowed me to work when it’s convenient. So as a mom, I have to be able to adapt. This artificial light usage allows a lot of flexibility because I can either film or I can photograph in the morning before the sun comes up or in the evenings. So that’s made it really nice. So convenient.

Megan:

Because it is hard planning around the sun. I’ve done that for so many years. I have to get this shot by four o’clock when it’s winter, because the sun goes down super early here and it’s just not always convenient. My family has adapted over the years, but it’s really annoying. So to be able to control when you do that, I can see that being just a huge weight off your shoulders. So tell us about your setup. Do you have something set up in your house that you can consistently go to?

Whitney:

So what I do is I have just a small room off the kitchen and I do have to set up and take down depending on whether I’m shooting a video or if I’m taking pictures. It’s not too bad because I have equipment that is quite easy to take down and put back up and I selected it for that purpose. So for video, I am currently using two Dracast LED light panels, and I set them up so that it almost is like a really large window because that is what I was used to shooting when I was using natural light. I had my whole setup in front of a really large, full length window. ASo then I put up a really big diffuser and I’ll even, on occasion, take a diffuser sheet. There’s probably a technical term for it, but I don’t know it.

That will really soften the light if I want it. It just depends on what kind of look I’m going for. So it’s really easy. I just put the lights in the position. When I’m done, turn the lights off, put them in the corner. As far as my photography set up, I use a godox 8600 pro. Then I use an umbrella. So I bounce the light off a big umbrella. I use the pro photo deep white umbrella and it’s the size large. So that gives me the same feel of a really large window. Obviously that’s what I’m used to. So that’s what I like to do. You have so many other options with artificial light. You can use a grid so that you can get a moodier fill. You can use strip boxes, which I do have a strip box, but I don’t necessarily go for that moody feel as often. So you can manipulate the light, make it what you want. If you haven’t tried artificial light, I’m just a huge believer in it. I love it.

Megan:

That’s great. I think it’s scary to a lot of bloggers, myself included. I tested it years ago, for the same reason. I wanted control of that whole situation and I liked it okay. But I agree that natural lighting is just so beautiful. So I do try to use 100% natural lighting now for that reason. But the way you described it, Whitney, it’s very approachable and very doable. You’ve got two led light panels that you can put up easily. Then it sounds like you’ve just got a system ,so you can put it up, take it down. It’s not taking you that much time. It’s not a huge investment.

Whitney:

Yeah. I know that there’s some other people who do videos that have lights from their ceiling. I have just had to keep mine very simple. So I’ve gotten comfortable with what I use and the equipment that I have. So for people who maybe are starting out or wanting to dip their toes into artificial light, maybe don’t invest in the most expensive equipment, but start somewhere. Do a couple of videos or pictures, whatever you’re doing. Just get comfortable with it. Your editing will have to adjust and adapt, but you’ll get used to it and you can edit to make it look like you’re using natural light.

Megan:

That’s a good point too. There’s so much power in the editing side. We sometimes discount that as well. Then I love your recommendation not to invest in something super expensive right off the bat. Just do something little to experiment. Then as with everything else, you can just grow from there. With photography, I know people say this all the time, start with your iPhone. If you’ve never taken pictures before of food and then upgrade from there. Just start with where you’re at. Buy something really simple. There’s so many options on Amazon, right? If you type in artificial lighting for food photography or photography.

Whitney:

You can find something for your budget. Definitely.

Megan:

Yes. Great stuff. So you’re making it sound very doable. You’re making it sound like this is something that can simplify your life, especially if you’re a busy mom. Talked through some equipment and details. So how did you use this as a way to monetize and help other bloggers? So talk through that and then tell other bloggers who maybe are thinking about doing this, how they can get started.

Whitney:

So I originally started doing some food videos for one of my really good friends who had a food blog. This was years ago. That’s how I got my feet wet and she and I were kind of learning it together. Then I took over for her exclusively. Then it just was by word of mouth. So say you are someone who’s wanting to provide video services for other bloggers. What I would suggest is to reach out to them or have a video or two or three that you can send to them and they can just see what you do. I think that helps people get an idea of what your style is like, if they were to send you a recipe, they would have a pretty good feel of the end product that you would return to them.

Megan:

Reaching out to bloggers that maybe you know, and sending examples. I love that recommendation because it does seem overwhelming and intimidating to reach out to someone you don’t know and say, Hey, I would love to do a video for you. But if it’s somebody that you’ve made a connection with, even if it’s just an online connection, they’re probably going to be more likely to say, oh, sure. I’ll support you. So that was great. Then what do you think about pricing? How do people know where to start with that? Because it can be such a range, right? Like $25 or do I charge $500? I mean, where do they start?

Whitney:

That is definitely a little bit trickier. It all depends on your experience. The style that you’re doing and your quality, naturally. Obviously quality is important, but you do have to price yourself competitively still. I still believe that these kinds of discussions are best done in private. So I would suggest reaching out, maybe personally, to some friends you have within the blogging community. Talk to them, gauge your experience level, and then maybe make a decision based on all of that information. You always want to take into account what your time is worth. So, if doing it at that price is worth the time, the energy, the stress, then go for it. But at the end of the day, you have to be happy with your decision. If you’re not happy with it, you’re going to have a bad experience. Ultimately you’re going to resent making those videos and the quality of those videos might suffer. So really, you have to talk to people and maybe even talk to people who are in your same pond. I don’t know the word that I’m looking for. Like you’re saying expertise level, experience level, and see what they suggest as well.

Megan:

It’s kind of a gut feeling thing. Pricing is really personal and it’s something you have to really get in touch with yourself about because at the end of the day, it comes down to what you feel good about. We’ve all done those projects where we undercharged. Well, I’ve done so many and you’re in the middle of it and you’re at the end of it. Oh my gosh, I cannot believe I just spent all that energy and time getting this much money back. I’ve done that so many times in my life. So if you’re feeling that way, even getting started with a project,, you’re not charging enough. So you need to feel like when I get to the end of this project, I’m going to feel good about earning that much money. I feel like there’s no cut and dried answer. You have to just get in touch with your inner self and what is going to feel good for you? That could be $25, like I said. It could go up to $500 or more, but it’s not something that anyone can tell you. I liked your recommendation just to look around, ask around, ask what other people are doing and charging and then create your own pricing really.

Whitney:

Definitely. I have had experiences like you have shared where you do it and you just resent it the whole time and you’re grumpy about it.

Megan:

Oh my gosh. Yes. There’s nothing worse than that too. I used to do portrait photography and I was always way too nice. Looking back, I’m like, why did I do this? But I would give everyone discounts because I wanted business. Everybody. I was like, I’ll take a hundred dollars off. It was so ridiculous. The whole time I was resentful, I’m not making enough money. Well, it was my fault. It wasn’t their fault. I told him to give me less money. So it was a huge lesson to learn. Now I just feel like any projects I go into, I need to feel like, yes, I am worth that. This is the money that I need to earn in order to make this work worth it.

Whitney:

You know, my husband is really good at this. I tend to want to make a decision quickly. Someone sent me an email. I need to respond right away. Depending on the topic of the email, then I would. But when it’s as far as your business and pricing and getting a good idea of what your services are worth, you need to sit on it for a little bit and make sure you feel about it. Having a good gut feeling about it, like you had mentioned a few minutes ago. I think that’s really important.

Megan:

I love that you sit with it. I’m the same way. I will be like, oh, I need to decide this in an hour. My husband too is the same. He’ll be like, well, why can’t you just think about it for a little bit? Well, I need to decide now, but you don’t really. You can sit with it for a day and see how it feels. So that is so great. I hope that helps somebody just to think through pricing, if they’re wanting to do video or photos for other bloggers. Let’s talk about work-life balance. Just how you juggle everything. I know that you have a family and you’re busy. You’ve got a busy business and a busy life. So what are your best tips for managing all of that?

Whitney:

Like you mentioned, yes, I do have kids. I’m actually expecting my third very soon.

Megan:

Oh my gosh. Congratulations!

Whitney:

Thank you. My husband doesn’t help with my stuff. I know some people are really blessed to have other families supporting their business and their blogging journey and that’s so awesome. But as far as juggling and balancing life, I feel like I need to give a little bit of background. So growing up, my mom was always there and always very supportive. She attended every single sporting event or school thing that myself or my four other siblings had, and this meant a lot to me. So having that has really helped me make a decision for how I want to be. So I have decided that I want to be very present in my children’s lives. So having that be an active decision that I’ve made, that changes how I have approached my juggling and balancing life. We talked about having artificial light and how that has helped because doing that has allowed me to work when it’s convenient and when I can be most efficient.

Whitney:

I actually have my youngest son, he will go to preschool a couple of times a week. So when he does, I always have a specific plan and schedule in place. So sometimes I’ll even time block, not always, but if I do, I will always give myself some extra space and time for whatever may come up. You have to be flexible, right? Especially when you’re a mom. But having a plan and being intentional with the tasks that I want to accomplish in a specific timeframe really helps. Another thing is just working when it’s efficient for me. When I can be the most efficient. So sometimes I would wake up before my kids would wake up and photograph a recipe. Obviously not everyone can do that, but that has been something that I do because I want to be with my kids. I don’t want to be completely torn photographing in the middle of the afternoon and they’re yelling at me that they need me.

Megan:

The artificial lighting helps with that because otherwise you wouldn’t be able to get up whenever you want and photograph. You’d have to wait for the sun to be perfect. So that’s really helpful.

Whitney:

It’s totally helpful. So that’s been a great tool. I consider artificial light a tool that helps me achieve work-life balance.

Megan:

Absolutely. I’ve never looked at it like that, but I love that perspective and I 100% respect you and the way that you prioritize your kids and your family time. I love that. It sounds like you and I work very similarly in that we have a plan for when we’re going to work. Then we’re super intentional about the time we have and the work we do. I am the same way. Every day I have a plan for the next day. I know when my boys are at school and I make the absolute most of every minute of those days, even if I feel like crap. I sit down and I work until they’re home. Then, they’re older. It sounds like they’re a little bit older than your kids, but I still want to make time for them.They are my priority as well.

That way I know when it’s three o’clock in their home, I can get some work done, but my priority is to sit and make sure their homework is done and to talk to them about their day. That makes me feel good. It’s not always easy, right, Whitney, going through the day during those stretches, when we need to be super efficient and productive, it’s hard. I mean, it’s not an easy thing, but that motivates me to just get through those times. I have to keep working and I have to work as hard as I can because when they’re home, I want to be there for them.

Whitney:

Totally. I love that you do that too. That’s been my mindset and goal as well when they’re gone. Work hard and as fast as you can. Another thing for me, is I don’t multitask frequently when I’m doing my work. So when I say that I used to a year ago, maybe I would have my phone and I would watch a show while I’m editing pictures or editing a video. My husband was the one that was confused why I was doing that. Multitasking is not efficient. It takes so much longer. I stopped. Guess what? He was so right. When you can just focus on the task at hand, you get it done a lot quicker. So that’s another thing that I have adopted. When I work, I just work and I really try to limit any distractions. I’ve really kind of cut off that time so that I can be as efficient as possible in that short timeframe.

Megan:

It takes energy to absorb information. I’ve learned that too over the years that I can’t be as efficient as possible when I am absorbing something else while I’m working. It actually depletes me much more quickly. So it’s strategic I think, to work and just work. You’re preserving energy. You’re preserving brain space for the important stuff. Your kids, later, by doing that. So I love that. Multitasking is a silent killer of our business.

Whitney:

It can be, definitely. At least for me. I know some people can really thrive off of it. So that may not be advice for everyone.

Megan:

I mean, there is a time and place for multitasking. When I’m getting dinner ready, I try to do all the things, making lunch for the next day for the boyS. There’s a time and place for multitasking, but when you’re working, I feel like you need to focus on your work as much as possible, just so that you can be done whenever you want to be done.

Whitney:

Yeah, exactly. I agree.

Megan:

I would love to talk to you about this concept of time basically expanding to fill the time you will offer it. So the whole concept of Parkinson’s law, I don’t know if you’ve heard of that, but work expands to fill the time available for its completion. We talked before the interview about this a little bit. You allot so much time and that’s how much you’re going to spend on it.

Whitney:

My husband, I talk about him a lot, right? He’s a great person. I love him. He is just full of all the knowledge, but he loves to refer to blogging, is like a gas. It’s so true. When he had first told me that. when he gave me that imagery, I was like, oh my gosh, it makes complete sense. Blogging is like a gas because it will fill up whatever size container you will give it. If you don’t give it a container, it will fill up your entire life. So you have to set boundaries. You have to make sacrifices. I’m sure we all think I can get more page views, traffic and make this more profitable if I do X, Y, and Z. But at some point you have to intentionally decide not to do what everyone else is doing. Basically you’re choosing balance over success. Not that you can’t be successful, you definitely can, but it’s having that boundary and setting those boundaries so that you can be better balanced and have that work-life balance that so many people say they want, but it’s hard to put the brakes on.

Megan:

It is. It’s so tempting. I could get more traffic if I just worked two more hours tonight. Actually what I found is that it’s counterproductive because when you work those two more hours, you’re really not as efficient. Your work time is, for me, like 40%, sometimes less. So then the next day you might be a little bit ahead, but is it worth it enough? Most of the time, the answer is no for me. So I’ve just stopped. I’ve stopped working in the evenings. I used to do that every night, Whitney. I wish I could get those years back, but I used to open my computer when I was hanging out with my husband and I wasted all of that time and I didn’t need to. Now, five o’clock I’m done. My computer goes down. I’m going to be way more efficient tomorrow if I do this.

Whitney:

I have been in that same situation. Even here and there, I definitely struggle because you hear or you know that so many other people are doing so much more than you. If I could just do that, maybe I would have the amount of traffic they do, or I would be just as successful, whatever your train of thought is. But you have to do what’s right for you. That answer may be different for everyone. Obviously the way I approach my work-life balance may not line up with other people’s approach and that’s okay too. But one other thing I was gonna say, so with setting boundaries, I know social media is a big one. So when I am in my working zone, I keep my phone in the other room. There’s a piece of advice that I heard from someone in regards to social media. It was to have a plan of action and be purposeful with your time on any of the platforms that you are using. I’ve loved that because it’s changed the way I approach it. So I don’t go and scroll. I just try to ask what my purpose is for today with this platform? Let me do it, be done with it and not linger longer.

Megan:

So ahead of time, before you go into it, you have a plan. You know how much time you’re going to spend, you know what your goal is. You’re not just wildly going in and scrolling forever.

Whitney:

Yeah, exactly. Yes. That’s it. I try to do that. Am I perfect? No.

Megan:

We all have those days where we don’t intend to, and then something catches our eye and we’re scrolling and we’re like, oh, that’s a nice, fun, new account. I’m going to look at that. Then you catch yourself like, oh, I have to get out of here. Do you have guidelines for how much time you can spend on Instagram and do you do TikTok? How many different platforms do you dip into throughout the day?

Whitney:

Not many because I don’t love social media. I know that I probably should, considering that I have blogging as my job. I know social media is such a big part of it. I don’t have YouTube and I’m okay with that. I realized that I just, that’s not going to be my thing. I don’t have the time to work on that platform or produce content for it. I don’t also don’t do TikTok. I guess I should just say what I do. That is Pinterest and Instagram and a little bit of Facebook. I guess the way, I don’t know if this is a good thing to admit or not, but I have set up my Facebook so that it is strictly business. So when I get on there, the only things I see in the home feed are blogging related.

So I get on there and there’s really no distractions because I only see blogging related things. So I’ll go and drop my link to one of my recipes and maybe a Roundup group. I feel like I’ve really gotten to a good place with my Facebook. As far as Instagram goes. I don’t have a set time. I try to just stay there for a couple minutes, interact, put up an Instagram post and I call it good. I know that’s so basic. I’m not the person to go to if you want social media advice, because I don’t love it. I probably should hire it out to someone, but I don’t know. Something’s holding me back.

Megan:

I think that’s okay. I think that’s good actually. We can all learn from you because that whole FOMO, fear of missing out, people get so caught up in that myself included. I hear that everyone’s on TikTok and killing it over there. So I feel like I should go try it, but then it’s like, I’m giving it 10% of my energy. So is it really worth it? No, it’s not. Because my heart is not in it. So I actually really respect what you do and you say that’s so basic, but I think that’s actually what we should be doing. So many of us are so caught up in social media and it’s draining. It can be exhausting looking through social media.

Whitney:

If you think about it. I mean, we aren’t octopuses with eight arms and legs and we can’t stretch ourselves in so many ways. We have to really decide what our main focus wants to be and for me. I love posting to my website. I just love it. It’s challenging. It’s satisfying. It’s so fulfilling. That has always been and will always be my number one focus, is my website. Because I love it. I don’t love the social media arms and legs, or however you want to refer to it. I don’t love the social media aspect. So I don’t put as much time or energy or effort into it because it’s just not the thing that brings me joy. So for me, I’ve decided to work on my blog. That’ll be my number one priority. If it changes, then it changes. If I grow to love doing Instagram, then maybe I’ll put a whole lot more time and energy into it. But right now that’s kind of where I’m at.

Megan:

If you love a certain part of it, that’s where your energy should go. You shouldn’t have to force the other parts so much. So being basic I think is totally okay, Whitney. I love that you do that. By the way, can I mention, I just pulled up your Instagram, but you have like 12,000 followers and you hate Instagram and social media. That’s amazing. So maybe your lack of focus on it actually brings people in or something. How do you explain that? I mean, that’s a lot of followers.

Whitney:

It hasn’t grown very quickly. So that’s the biggest thing. I haven’t put an emphasis on it to try and build my following. I know that being active on Instagram stories is pretty important to getting that growth. It’s hard for me because here we go to boundaries. I don’t want to share too much of my personal life. There’s work and then there’s my personal life. I don’t want my personal life to intertwine with work life too much. It’s hard. I would love to see the following grow, but to do that, I know you have to, you have to put in a lot of effort and I guess I just haven’t done that unfortunately.

Megan:

Well, good for you. I think this is all just so awesome that you have your priorities straight, you know where you want to spend your time. You love your family and your children and you want to put your focus there and you’ve just figured out a way to make that work and also get your work done and be efficient with your work.

Whitney:

It may not be a common opinion, but yeah, that’s kind of the way I have approached working and my personal life.

Megan:

Once you can figure out that balance, I mean, it’s never figured out, right? I mean, we’re always tweaking and working, but once you can get a handle on it, things get so much easier. It’s your work and your life, everything’s working with you instead of, oh, I never have the time for my family or I never have time for work. So if you can just figure it out a little bit, this magic opens up in what you can accomplish and how you can spend your time.

Whitney:

The hardest thing for me is I tend to be a workaholic and I want to do more, more and more. The hardest thing for me is cutting back. So if I could post like once a day, that would be so cool. I would love to, but it’s just not in the cards. If I did that, everything would completely go out of whack. So it does come with a lot of sacrifice and you have to be okay with that, but you also will realize that it’s a good trade off. You’re not losing because you’re actually gaining in the end.

Megan:

So true. I love those words. Oh my goodness. You do have to be a little bit disciplined with what you want to do, because I’m the same way. I will say, it’d be so cool if I could do one post a day, like you said, or publish one episode a day,.I’ve had those thoughts and I’m like, no, Megan, step off. You’ve got to reign it in and you can’t do it all. So you do have to be really strict with yourself as far as what your boundaries are. Whitney, if there’s one takeaway that you could impart to food bloggers along the lines of everything we’ve talked about with work-life balance, what would it be?

Whitney:

Blogging is like a gas and it will fill whatever size container you give it. If you don’t give it a container, it will fill up your life. So if you are looking for a better work-life balance, think of that and really sit down and decide how you could make that balance work, whether that’s taking up artificial light rather than using natural light so that you can work at more convenient or efficient times of the day. That’s a great tool. So I guess that would be my short takeaway.

Megan:

I love it. Thank you so much. Thank you for being here. This was so fun. What a fun chat. This is right up my alley. Something that I think is so important to talk about in our world. There’s so much information in our worlds. We can absorb all the SEO and the Pinterest and the strategic social media things. There’s all the things that we can learn, but almost more importantly than any of that, is this topic. Figuring out how to balance and take care of ourselves and prioritize the right way and focus on the people we love. We need to be putting our emphasis here even more than the SEO strategies. You mentioned that you had a favorite quote that you wanted to share. So we want to hear it.

Whitney:

So this is something that I also think about quite frequently. It’s a quote that my husband always says, and that is, “Sometimes money costs too much.” This really helps me keep things in perspective, especially going along with the things that we talked about today. But I know sometimes today it feels like the world is maybe overly money hungry and it can seem like the end goal is the accumulation of money. So this quote helps them realize that money is not the end goal. It’s not the end point. Money is a tool. Because it’s just a tool, you want to make sure you’re not giving up things you care about most for a piece of green paper, essentially

Megan:

Love it. What a great way to end. Thank you. I think I need to meet your husband and he sounds like such a wise man.

Whitney:

He really is. You should have interviewed him.

Megan:

Next time. Tell him he’s up next. We’ll put together a show notes page for you, Whitney, and just put all the takeaways in it. There’ve been so many great ones. If anyone wants to go peek at those, you can go to eatblogtalk.com/saltandbaker. Whitney, tell everyone where they can find you online.

Whitney:

So I blog saltandbaker.com and that’s really my big go-to there. You can find me, you can get in touch with me, send me an email if you have any questions. Obviously I’m on social media on instagram saltandbaker. That’s about it. That’s kind of what I do. I’m not all over the internet. Just a couple of places.

Megan:

Oh, I love it. That’s perfect. Well, thank you again so much for being here with me. It was a pleasure to have this conversation with you and thank you for listening today, food bloggers. I will see you next time.

Outro:

We’re glad you could join us on this episode of Eat Blog Talk. For more resources based on today’s discussion, as well as show notes and an opportunity to be on a future episode of the show, be sure to head to eatblogtalk.com. If you feel that hunger for information, we’ll be here to feed you on Eat Blog Talk.


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Pinterest image for episode 214 use artificial lighting as a tool to balance work life.

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Megan
Megan

Megan started her food blog Pip and Ebby in 2010 and food blogging has been her full-time career since 2013. Her passion for blogging has grown into an intense desire to help fellow food bloggers find the information, insight, and community they need in order to find success.

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