fashion illustration

MCO Turns 5! | Day 3 Giveaway | Highs & Lows…

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Catch up on day 1 and day 2 if you’re new here and wondering what this is all about. If you’re returning, welcome back to my 5 days of giveaways to celebrate my 5 years of running this website!

There have been a lot of highs and lows these past 5 years. Though thankfully I can say there have been more highs! But let’s start with the lows so we can end on a good note. 🙂

Lows

  • Stress & overwhelm
    No matter what field you are in, running a business is A LOT of work! And even though growth is something that everyone wants, mo’ growth and mo’ money just equals mo’ problems at times. Though I ultimately believe that my business is in God’s hands and that He’s the owner and I just manage it, it doesn’t mean my brain isn’t swarmed with frightening what ifs and a never ending to-do list. At the end of the day, I’m the boss and problems fall on my shoulders. This leads to a lot of stress and overwhelm. I wish my brain would just clock out at 5pm and I could leave it behind for the day, but it follows me everywhere I go!
  • Running a business while being a mom
    Having a job where I can make money and work on my own schedule in order to stay home with my kids was and is the dream. But I’ll be honest, sometimes it’s my nightmare! It’s incredibly difficult to be all things to everyone. Okay, it’s impossible. Some days I’m going, going, going trying to do it all. Take care of the kids, take care of the house, and oh yeah, keep my business going. To be honest, some of this is self-inflicted and I put unrealistic expectations on myself. So I’m working on that, but working from home can be extremely hard at times.
  • Analytic code malfunctioning/tech problems
    There was one time where my analytic code which tracks my visitors stopped working, but I didn’t know it was malfunctioning at the time. Basically it was saying that barely anyone was going to my blog. This was a very big low for me because I felt so defeated. I spent years working at this and giving it my best. I seriously considered stopping. I kept going, but for about a month I was filled with a lot of self doubt. On the note of coding problems, anytime there is a tech problem it’s my low. They are the biggest headaches for me and though I’ve upgraded tech services over time, you can never escape these!
  • Taking pictures in less than desirable conditions
    I love to take pictures, but for the first 4 years, taking outfit pictures for my blog was very hard and so not fun. Our first home didn’t have any good picture spots so 99% of photos were taken around our town. This means we had to stuff our tiny car to the brim with clothes and take pictures rain or shine, 90 degrees or 20 degrees. It was frustrating and tiring. Then Will came along and it got even harder. Except we wouldn’t take pictures in bad temps or bad weather, of course! But for 4+ years we trucked ourselves around town to take pictures and it was always a whole day stressful ordeal. Thankfully, we’ve set up our current house to be better for photos so it’s a lot easier now.
  • Self-doubt, comparision, & unnecesary negativity
    Self-doubt, comparison, trolls, and imposter syndrome can get you no matter what job or lifestyle you have. This was very hard for me in the beginning because it’s so not fun seeing others soar past you when you feel like you’re giving it your all. Plus, nothing can kill a good mood quite like a hateful comment can. I still struggle with all of these things now, but not as much, thankfully. Dwelling on these feelings never help.

I could sum up the hardest parts of my journey in those lows, but that’s not to say I’m not incredibly thankful when you look at the big picture. I know many people would love to have financial freedom, work for themselves, start a business, and be creative. I know many women aren’t in the position to do so nor do they have the support from the important people in their life. I know I’m very blessed and I don’t take it for granted, especially when I think about the highs!

Highs

  • Being able to help women
    As cheesy as it may sound, I do feel like I’m doing what God wants me to do and that alone is worth it all. I know this job could just be for a season and I may be meant to do something else in the future, but being able to talk about fashion in a practical way and inspire women is the biggest high out of this whole thing.
  • Getting accepted into Adthrive
    Adthrive is my ad company that manages the ads you see on this blog. They are an elite publishing team and I mentioned before that it was my goal to make passive income and I knew Adthrive would be the key to this. But it takes time to get 100k monthly viewers, which is their threshold. I was feeling a little bummed about how long things were taking me because in my mind, I should have been there like, yesterday. So getting to 100k/monthly was a big milestone for me. And then getting accepted into Adthrive was an even bigger milestone for me. And I’ll never forget the moment when Titus woke me up and asked, “Did you see what you made these past 2 months?” When he showed me I won’t lie, I got a little emotional. This income was a big part of what I’ve been working towards. And I can’t believe how much it’s grown since then! And on that note…
  • Financial blessings
    This business has been a big blessing financially, allowing us to pay off debt (except the house), travel the world, buy and fix up homes, give, and save up a downpayment to finally build a house on land we’ve always dreamed of. I also had a pretty proud moment when I was able to buy an SUV for my family in cash! I come from a single mom household of 6 kids and I married young. “Abudance” was not really in my vocabulary. I don’t have a traditional 4 year college degree and anything I wanted I had to work for. I had no idea that given my “qualifications”, I would be able to grow a 6 figure business. God is good!
blog highlights
awkward pose…I am very pregnant here haha!
  • Being featured in InStyle
    Yes, it was a lifelong dream of mine to be in a magazine one day haha! I can die happy knowing that 13 year old Carolyn got her wish. 🙂 13 year old Carolyn also wanted to be a model. That happened too!
blog highlights
  • “Free” cruise
    This job comes with so many perks and opportunities and Titus and I got the opportunity to take a “free” cruise around the caribbean. Of course, we worked and created content in exchange for it so it wasn’t truly free, but I never had my old grocery store manager offering me a cruise in exchange to cut fruit haha!
  • Going live on TV
    I was so nervous I thought I was going to puke, but being able to do a live segment talking about fashion and my business was a big opportunity. Seeing the words “fashion blogger” under my name on the big screen was a pinch me moment!
blog highs
  • Creating an eBook
    I always wanted to have a product and finally, I was able to make it happen. I was so nervous that it would fail and I held my breath as I put it live on my website. I sold my first copy within 20 minutes!

There have been a lot of other great things about this business, from the brands we worked with to the people we’ve met, but we’d be here all day if I kept going. And I know you’re anxious to hear about today’s prize…

Today’s Prize: Chanel La Creme Hand Cream + Chanel Le Volume De Chanel Mascara

A little bit of luxury can elevate your day-to-day living and what better luxury to do all that elevating with than iconic French brand, Chanel?

I picked these two items because they are the most practical (I sound so old). Slip them in your purse and use them on the go and have a little bit of extravagance for the everyday!

*I used my own products to photograph

How To Enter*

To enter to win today’s prize, comment on this blog post with your answer to the question below + follow me on Instagram + follow me on Pinterest.**

Question: What is your favorite thing about My Chic Obsession?

Happy commenting and good luck!

I’ll see you in tomorrow’s blog post for day 4! I’ll announce the prize for that day and I’m going to take you somewhere special. No, not Paris. It’s time to take you… behind the scenes!

Au revoir!

*Winner will be selected at random, picked from the best quality answers, and chosen by the end of the week. The winner will be notified by 9/13 via the email commented with. If the winner is unable to provide a shipping address by 9/17 then another winner will be chosen.

**Selected winner will be asked to send screenshots to verify

Carolyn Arentson
Carolyn is the founder and creator behind My Chic Obsession. When she's not dreaming up new content, you can find her watching a funny tv show with her husband, raising her two boys, or planning her next trip to Paris.