The Honest Shruth | Shruthi
SHRUTHI | THE HONEST SHRUTH
Shruthi is a lifestyle blogger in Austin, TX.
*edited for length
WHY DID YOU START YOUR BLOG?
So I started my blog because I moved abroad and I figured there was no other time like then to start writing about travels and all the people I would meet, the food I would taste. We moved to London and I knew that London was going to be our central point. We were going to be able to travel from London every month. It was amazing. It was unbelievably incredible. We went to 13 countries in 13 months. That being said, I knew it was the perfect time to start my blog.
WHAT DO YOU COVER IN YOUR BLOG?
So I cover 6 different topics in my blog. On Sundays I write about faith. Mondays I write about relationships that could be romantic or with friends or with yourself. Wednesdays I write about food. Thursdays are thoughts. Fridays are for fashion and style. And then I take Saturdays off. It's good to have a break.
HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH WHAT YOU WANTED TO WRITE ABOUT?
I know that every business always said best practice is to have a niche, have something specific that you're really good at. But if I think about my mind and who I am, there's not like one thing that exclusively comes to mind. I enjoy many things and sure it may be harder to create a brand when you're a lifestyle blog. But if I'm being true to who I am, that's who I am. And so that's why I picked all of those topics. Each of them is something that I really have opinions on.
HAD YOU BEEN WRITING BEFORE?
I was definitely a journal-er whether it was spiritually, I'm always journaling. Or if it was lists for to-dos. I love to write letters to friends. I love the written word. And even things like accounting, I would so much prefer to have it in a book than online. I would say I've always been a fan of the written word. This is a time when I can write and put it up digitally so that more people will read it.
WHAT's YOUR FAVORITE PART?
100% my favorite part is all of the people that I meet. It is so amazing how relationships can be created digitally. And at least initially, digitally. But then you can fulfill those with coffee, lunch or dinner or things like that. I feel like we're in a world where if you always keep your relationships online, you end up being very lonely. So online is a great way to start those relationships and then move into real life relationships.
WHAT'S YOUR LEAST FAVORITE PART ABOUT RUNNING A BUSINESS?
My least favorite part is that...so with a blog, your writing and your photography, you want to say to yourself "oh my worth doesn't come in likes, my worth doesn't come in engagement or comments or shares or people going on my website or all the statistics. You want to say your worth doesn't come there. But from a business perspective, it does. You want people to be engaging, and reading and sharing, and liking, and commenting. So it's an interesting and difficult balance to be like the Lord is sovereign, and my faith in God tells me that the right people will read this. But at the same time if I'm working with a business, I can't tell a business the Lord is sovereign. They're going to say they want to see engagement. So that's been difficult to balance. I definitely have weeks where I say "oh yes God's got this." I'm doing this for His glory so I know that the right people are going to see it. Then I have weeks where I'm saying" what is going on? Why are my impressions like this, my reach, shares..." So that's tough.
WHAT DO YOU THINK MAKES YOUR BLOG DIFFERENT THAN OTHER LIFESTYLE BLOGS IN AUSTIN?
I'd definitely say that I'm different. Each person is different. I never try to be like someone else. I never have. I don't care to be that way because then I'm pushing down who I authentically am if I try to impersonate someone else. And that's why my blog is different. I think people thrive when they find their voice. And I know my voice. My English AP teacher in high school told me once, "when you do speeches, you speak really well. And when you write, you sound like a different person. You lose yourself when you write. You're trying to be too formal, too eloquent." So something I've been doing is I speak my blog posts. I literally speak them. I use voice dictation on my phone and I speak the entire 500-800 words. And then I go back in and edit for grammar and cohesiveness. That's how I found my voice.
IS THERE SOMETHING THAT YOU WISH YOU KNEW BEFORE STARTING YOUR BLOG?
I feel like either I was prepared for it or I learned it. There hasn't been anything that I've truly been...I came from a marketing background so I knew the technical side of it. I think what I would've done more in the beginning is offer it up in prayer. Because when it was monetizing, I was saying "this is just a fun little hobby". During that time, you set habits. And then when it started to monetize, you still have those habits. And then suddenly, you're like I need to start offering this in prayer, not having my identity in it, my value. But it's hard to make that change when you went a really long time without it. That's what I'm going through right now is realizing in every compartment, I need to be offering this up in prayer and not keep it as my little hobby. It's not a hobby anymore. It's just unhealthy to assume it's totally yours. I wish I'd had someone in the beginning who was on the same path as I was spiritually who could've said "hey, this is cool that you're starting this, but even if this goes nowhere, you need to start from day 1 praying about it." I really wish...
WHAT'S THE MOST IMPORTANT LESSON YOU'VE LEARNED?
Not feeling that your worth is connected to your work. Which is not what the world tells you.
WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN 10 YEARS?
Ideally, if I could plan my life, 10 years from now, I'd have my family. It's actually one of the reasons why I started the blog. I knew it could be self-sufficient and if I could get it to the place where income is coming in, and I could be at home with the kids, that's a dream that I've always had. So 10 years from now ideally, I'd be at home with my kids, my blog would be a business, I would love to have a fashion line. And honestly I'd love to write a book. I have a lot of aspirations but I'm not going to rush them.
SO WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO DO FOR INSPIRATION?
For inspiration, I'm definitely a kinesthetic learner/inspiration getter. I'm a big fan of walks. My inspiration comes from my thoughts. So if I'm doing something active with my body, I feel like my brain has time to sift through the millions of thoughts. And I love to add creative things to my life. I love painting. One of my favorite feelings is seeing bright color. A blank canvas with a bright vermillion red stroke with blue. I just love it. I love getting inspiration from color, from nature and actually from conversation too.
HOW DO YOU KEEP YOURSELF ORGANIZED?
That's funny. My desktop is a mess. There's 300 files everywhere. Probably once every few months I organize my files from pictures, to documents, I format titles. My google drive is a mess right now. I need to do an re-organization. Every few months I organize my laptop, my phone, my calendar. I have a google calendar which is like my life. It has 8 calendars on there. It really comes from like days of inspiration to be organized.