You blog at Cyn City and work as a digital consultant - how do you keep a work-life balance in a hectic city whilst juggling multiple roles?
Very good question. This is actually where I got my inspiration for my blog - how to balance working long hours while also having fun, exploring new cities, trying new foods and keeping healthy. My blog is my way of channeling my balance and therefore my passions and interests outside of work support my blog in terms of finding content and relevance and keeping it creative.
I love style: I pick up style magazines, peruse Pinterest and get up early each day to indulge in putting together an outfit based on the weather. Like clockwork my neighbours will see me pop my head out of my window at 7.40am to check the forecast and also see if the London general consensus is that you need a jacket #CyntraIsWatchingYou.
I love to cook: therefore I will go and listen to talks from new and upcoming chefs, go to new restaurants for brunches/dinners to be inspired and get copies of new cookbooks that come out. In that way I am always able to support my Instagram feed order with images.
I love balance: I believe that exercise can usually solve most problems. If I have had a hard day and the sunshine is out you will find me walking home from Soho with my favourite playlist on to let go of the day. I practice Pilates and will take time each week to keep sane. I also indulge with Rosé in the sunshine with pals when I just need to unwind.
All of the above keeps my mind balanced and my creative juices flowing.
What are your top tips for those looking to start their own lifestyle / wellness platform?
1) Ask questions and reach out to people already doing it. The network of other blogger friends I have is great and we always support each other.
2) Get a really good website designer who knows a thing or two about SEO.
3) Be authentic - it is very easy to see someone doing well and be like "yeah I want to do that" but unless it comes from the heart it will be transparent and you will lose interest.
What has been your biggest challenge since setting up Cyn City, and how have you overcome it?
Photography. Lifestyle platforms must be visually stimulating - it is what makes people come back for more. I have never been taught how to take pictures or edit for that matter and teaching myself has been a process of trials and fails but slowly I am getting there. The way I have over come it is by going to as many photography workshops as possible and YouTube videos - they really are so helpful.
Instagram: Taking pictures of myself. I hate it. I get so cringed out by having my photo taken and have done since a child. I would either go cross-eyed or stick my tongue out as a kid and now that has transpired to me always wearing sunglasses or going for a pout. The way I have overcome this - well I haven't - but it's just taking a breath and not being overly analytical when I post the photo.
How do you prefer to work with brands?
I only work with brands I like. Whether it is sponsored/ paid or on a gift basis - I will only represent brands I truly use or enjoy. I have been contacted in the past and been offered large amounts to put my face to some chemicals or pills which are supposed to make you magically: slimmer, prettier, sportier or a unicorn (I jest) but I feel that to truly represent myself and be authentic I only work with people or brands which I believe in.
By having this mantra, I have met some incredible people and brands and have stayed friendly building my network. It is lovely to see brands growing from strength to strength. I will quite often feature a product on my website from a brand I like just to show love and support when un-requested. As I said, Cyn City is my passion.
Do you have any tips you can share on how to build an authentic social media following in the wellness world?
Network, hashtag, comment and like within your niche. Never be afraid to ask for a follow back when you meet people. Comment on pictures - you will be surprised at how even the biggest bloggers out there will respond to you - which may lead to people click on your Instagram, which then may take them to your blog and there you have it - you have already grown your following.
Get out to wellness events and network. I have met some truly inspiring people by doing this. I have met, chatted and been followed by people who only had 3k followers at an event and now have grown to have 1.9million and love #midgettrees (no name dropping here).
Hashtag and check the hashtags you use to like others within your niche. I will always have a look at people who follow and comment on my pictures who found me through a hashtag and I will follow them back if I like their content.
If you do you and it makes you happy people will naturally align to that. Keep at it and stay positive, and of course, balanced.