I’m getting discouraged you guys. A few years back I said I’d never vlog. Then I decided to give it a try, and I started Its Sonya on YouTube. Guess what? I like it! Vlogging is basically putting words you’d usually have for your blog into a video. Hence the term vlog. I’ve always said that I express myself better in writing than in words, and I still feel that is true of me. There is an art that comes with being able to express yourself verbally and I don’t feel you’re ever too old to try to improve that technique.
Why I’m Discouraged
The whole purpose of this blog and my vlog on YouTube is to help people, black women and girls in particular, to navigate going natural and embrace their natural hair. I want to inspire and encourage people, and the main way you can do this is to speak honestly from your own experiences. To me, one of the most important things you must do is be yourself. I’ve watched thousands of YouTube videos and the personalities are all across the board. There are those who are bubbly and have a lot of energy, there are those who have a lot of personality and are over the top. And there are those who are laid back or, dare I say it – boring. People want to see personality, they want to be entertained. I get that. But that’s not my lane. My lane is to help, educate, inform, encourage, and be a source or information all while keeping things lighthearted. My content mostly contains a lot of helpful information.
Being myself, which is oftentimes laid back and chill, may be hurting me and I get that. Maybe I could or should put some more energy into my videos. I probably put people to sleep because I’m too laid back, LOL! But at the end of the day, when I’m speaking on a specific topic, I hope that’s what they are tuning in for – the information and not a show because I’m not there to put on show.
My numbers have declined, and I have a few theories on that. For one, I no longer have sisterlocks. I’ve combined my locs and now I have what would be deemed microlocs or just plain locs. They aren’t traditional locs yet because they are still too small to be traditional locs. I knew I’d lose subscribers based on that because my journey no longer fits those who followed me because of having sisterlocks.
Second, as I go through my loc journey I continue to discover things about my hair, about how I care for my hair or how others I pay care for my hair. There’s so many unwritten rules about loc care like you should use conditioner on your locs or you shouldn’t because it causes build up, and other things you should or shouldn’t use on your locs. I’ve come to realize that no matter what you put on your hair you are going to experience build up. Also, I’ve come to realize that not everyone is going to agree with your opinions or decisions, and that’s fine. So if someone stops following me because I said something they don’t agree with, that’s perfectly fine by me. I know I’m not everyone’s cup of tea.
Third, I always preach natural remedies first before anything else. I’ve been making my own aloe vera moisturizing spritz/conditioner and using that on my locs. However, since coloring my locs I’ve realized that I needed more than aloe to moisturize and condition my locs. That’s why I used the conditioner I already had in my house and watered it down and then used it on my locs. (This was before I found and purchased Keracare conditioner that is specifically made for color treated hair.) There may be those who feel I’ve been hypocritical when I change my thinking or outlook on things and stop following me based on that. But isn’t that what happens when you learn and grow? You change. Never have I said that no products are good or should be used. There are some good products out there that is worth your coins, but for me, I try to use natural remedies as much as possible. Especially since I have locs now.
My point is not everyone is going to like what you have to say or understand when you’ve had a change of heart about something.
Do I Need To Do More How To Videos?
I’ve never been one to show people how to do things in my videos. I’ve tried a few times but it’s never been something I felt comfortable doing. For one I need better equipment – camera, lighting, tripod, etc. (If that sounded like an excuse it’s because it is an excuse, lol!) A lot of people want or need to see how to make something or do something. They are visual learners and I get that. The most I’ll do in my videos is show you the products I’ve purchased and will use and then I will tell you how to make it or I’ll direct you to where you can go to learn how to make something.
Lately I’ve stepped out of my comfort zone – even though I still don’t have the proper equipment – and I’ve done a few videos on how to make your own hair growth oils. I don’t have exact measurements, but I show you how I make mine. To be honest I really enjoyed doing that because its something that I’m passionate about. I love DIY projects, especially when it comes to making healthy, organic things that can be used on your hair and on your skin. I may do more of these simple videos in the future. That’s another thing – I keep my how to videos as simple as possible because I like simple DIY videos myself.
I’m Not Going to Quit
I’m not going to quit because I realize that my videos may help someone someday. It may not be today, tomorrow, next week or next year. YouTube videos are there forever until you take them down yourself if you were the creator. I’m just in my feelings right now, licking my wounds, lol! I also know that there are things that one must do to get more subscribers or to make your videos stand out more.
*Hair and makeup looking good at all times. This is a problem for me because I’m not one who styles my locs or fuss with my locs. 99% of the time I wear my locs down. I don’t do twist outs or braid outs for curly or wavy locs. They hang the way they hang. I don’t like styling my locs because I don’t want unnecessary tension on them. As far as makeup goes – it’s summer time right now. Actually, even during the winter months you won’t see me with the “beat face” because you just won’t. If the mood hits me to put on makeup I will. If not, you need to get into my natural vibes, LOL!
*Having various beautiful location shots or backgrounds. My favorite place to shoot my videos is my kitchen. You may not realize it because for most of my videos done at home I’m sitting in front of a white wall. Just recently I started sitting in a new location…in front of my fridge, LMBO!!! I’m just lazy y’all. My kitchen is where I get the best light, the most privacy, and it’s just a much easier set up.
*Dressing up. I’ll admit that this is an area I could improve in. When I was working outside of the home before COVID hit, this was an easy thing to do because I had to dress up for work. I would simply keep on my work clothes and my makeup and make my videos. But on the weekends…that’s when I go back to bare face and t-shirts! Again, I know I can improve in this area and I will.
Honestly, I will try to improve in some of the areas. I love makeup, so I’ll try to wear it whenever I decide to film. One thing I will not change is being myself. I can’t put on this character that isn’t me just for followers and likes. I need to learn how to market my channel and my content better. I also need to look at the videos I’ve done that got a lot of response (views and likes) and do more videos like those. I basically made a post complaining about something I can change but am too lazy to do some of the things that I can change. Yup, that about sums up this blog post!