In our world today, people are primarily driven by the desire to be successful. Whether that means being wealthy, famous, beautiful, intelligent, respected, or however an individual personally defines “success” in their life, it can start to feel like we’re all running a race that has no clear end mark.
The problem with measuring success is that it’s all relative. My definition of success is starkly different from someone else’s. On top of that, the bar for success is constantly being upped, whether by ourselves or the society in which we live in. Even after we “succeed” and reach our set goals, there’s still this longing to do more, achieve more, and be more.
After launching my blog last year in May of 2016, I honestly didn’t expect or anticipate for it to grow and take off. After a month of blogging as a mere hobby, I was contacted by brands who were interested in my potential. I explained to them that frankly, I had just started blogging, and that I was very vocal and blunt about my Christian faith. Still, brands continued to reach out to me via e-mail with the intent of collaborating together. Gradually, those sponsorship opportunities transitioned into paid posts, long-term contracts, and free products being shipped to my doorstep.
Honestly speaking, it is extremely difficult to “make it” in the blogging world, because it’s become such a saturated industry where everyone and anyone with a camera, Instagram account, and personal website labels themselves as a blogger and influencer. However, in reality, blogging requires much more work and effort. To be taken seriously, you must produce high-quality content, maintain a legitimate website with its own domain, build a strong Instagram following, direct traffic to your blog, and ultimately, differentiate yourself from a sea of other bloggers.
On top of that, there are several tiers and levels of bloggers. There are those who pursue it as a hobby in hopes for it to grow into something more, those who get paid to blog part-time, those who blog full-time but are not necessarily public figures, and of course, those who blog for a living to the point where they become celebrity-like figures, and are nationally recognized and looked up to by other aspiring bloggers.
But as I’m approaching my one-year “bloggerversary” in two weeks, I’ve been reflecting on my own definition of success as a blogger. And to be frank, it has nothing to do with the numbers. I’m not oblivious or naive. I’m aware of how important it is quantify my following, readership, and content through numbers, but I’ve come to realize that all of that doesn’t mean a thing to me without the very reason why I started this blog in the first place. And that reason is to share my faith in Jesus Christ in an authentic and meaningful way.
Truthfully, it’s not my goal to become a big-time, famous blogger. But I do strive to be someone who genuinely points back to Jesus in all that I do.
To be influential for the sake of Christ is very different from pursuing fame for our own sake. I don’t think John Piper, Francis Chan, Tim Keller, or other reputable Christian leaders ever went in with the attitude of “I want to be famous.” I believe that they followed their God-given calling, which was ministry- and that God entrusted them and blessed their ministry as they displayed their faithfulness to Him.
Everyone’s calling is different. In the same way that God may call some of His people to become public figures, He also calls others to be lights within the corporate workplace. Or as stay-at-home moms. Or as missionaries. There are no limits as to how He calls us, but there is definitely wisdom in being discerning and prayerful, so that we don’t pursue our own selfish ambitions claiming that it’s for God, when in reality, it’s for us.
All in all, wherever God calls me to serve, I pray that I would always have the heart of a humble servant. Whether I continue my journey as a Christian Lifestyle Blogger in the years to come or not, my mission is to help make disciples of Christ however God calls me to. And it’s my prayer that if you’re reading this post, that you will too.
No amount of fame, wealth, success, beauty, or recognition from others will complete us. Even philanthropy and giving to the poor is a futile pursuit without an eternal perspective in mind. The answer to our constant seeking of something more isn’t something that can be fulfilled by our ambitions or worldly pursuits. The voids and emptiness we feel in our hearts can’t be filled by things, or even other people.
That God-sized hole was meant to be filled by God alone. And the first step we can take out of this endless cycle of running a rat race with no clear end goal, is to recognize how futile and fleeting our own selfish pursuits are, in order to understand and accept that we were created by a God who loves us deeply and cares for us. Following His ways and obeying His commands is truly for our benefit, not our loss.
Announcements & Updates:
I recently collaborated with Hair Designs by Mona for my latest balayage summer look. If you live in the Dallas area, I would highly recommend booking an appointment with her. She’s by far one of the best hairstylists and colorists I’ve ever worked with in the DFW area. Not to mention, she’s a beautiful soul, inside and out. Here’s a picture of my finished look below!
I’m currently taking a break from filming and editing videos for my YouTube channel. I explain more about why I decided to step on the breaks in my latest interview with YouTuber HelloHannahCho. You can watch that video and more at youtube.com/HannahChoi.